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Chick Flicks Can Ruin Your Love Life NBC Today Show 24DEC08
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a Scottish university issued an alarming news release warning that romantic comedies "may actually damage your love life."
According to a few enterprising social scientists at Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, romantic comedies can raise unrealistic romantic expectations among fans and may therefore set them up for personal failure and a lifetime of disappointment.
Bjarne Holmes, the lead researcher on the project at the university's Family and Personal Relationships Laboratory, says "Audiences are able to see that movies are not reality. We know this. But there's a little emerging evidence that it still has an impact on our emotional lives."
Holmes isn't arguing that contemporary romantic comedies invented today's outlandish expectations of romantic love. "Such fantasies have been around since antiquity," he says. But that's part of the point. Until recent times, marriage was more a matter of joining families and property than it was about love. Romantic myths, Holmes said, arose in a time when people longed for a personal connection to the lucky fools with whom they would share their short, brutish lives.
Today, however, argued Holmes, when we have the great good fortune to marry for true love, we don't need all those overwrought narratives about finding your soul mates. "The myths have outlived their usefulness," he said.
Check out Time Magazine's "Are Romantic Movies Bad For You?"
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