From Front Porch to Back Seat: Courtship in Twentieth-century America - Introduction Summary & Analysis

Beth L. Bailey
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Introduction Summary and Analysis

In 1978, author Beth Bailey was a senior in college. She appeared on the Phil Donahue show to defend coed dorms. Her insular college experience left her wondering how anyone could oppose it. The controversy she encountered, she now realizes, was not really about coed dorms but the transformation of dating. Many regretted the collapse of dating and romance but Beth and her fellow discussants said that love was more than mere mystery and romance and that intimacy could come first. Her parents' generation ultimately accepted Bailey's view.

However, the two forms of human connection, courtship and immediate intimacy, reflected different understandings of values. While the latter system won out, many criticized it for making sex meaningless and producing a lack of commitment, generating teen pregnancy and spreading STDs. Many idealized the past as a result, mostly on the right but often...

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This section contains 624 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the From Front Porch to Back Seat: Courtship in Twentieth-century America Study Guide
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