The Case For Falling In Love: Why We Can't Master the Madness of Love—and Why That's the Best Part

Mari Ruti, Sourcebooks, $21.99 (304p) ISBN 978-1-4022-5080-4
According to Ruti, the leaky boat in the turbulent sea of romance self-help is that men and women are different; in order for women to attract men, these books suggest, women must hide their power, feelings, or desires and manipulate men into new ways of thinking. The Harvard-educated Ruti urges women to ignore this advice and redefine how they look for love, what they look for in love, and even why they look for love. Instead of using strategies based in soft science or "emotional intelligence," Ruti taps sources ranging from Lacan to "Gossip Girl"; women, she argues, have worked too hard in their careers to fall prey to 1950s gender tropes in dating. Women should outright dismiss overtly macho, insecure, or otherwise threatened men. Ruti's approach is both funny and thought-provoking, and she moves effortlessly between intellectual and popular sources to provide an extremely refreshing take on an overdone genre. The author manages to strike a superb balance between writing an excellent book for a genre that she persuasively critiques from a gender studies perspective. (Feb.)
Reviewed on: 02/14/2011
Release date: 02/01/2011
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