Ovid's "Art Of Love": An Essay Response

1431 words - 6 pages

The book Art of Love was a crazy ride. There were things that made sense and things that were so far out there I found myself thinking, "How did this guy (and any other man using this book as a guide) EVER get a woman?!" I saw the book as having a very casual perception of love, sex and women. The overall tone of the book connotes that sex is all that matters, it's not the purpose of a relationship to sincerely be with another person, and that women are purely objects.Ovid was a man. He saw things through a man's perspective despite thinking otherwise. In writing this book, I think that Ovid was WAY off with a lot of his advice, however he did manage to get a few things right. Nowadays, I'd say that the "act of wooing" and love-making is adaptive. Our culture has expanded so much that it would be impossible for one man or woman to woo many people in the same exact way. Ovid hit on this point. On page 190 Ovid says, "The characters of women all differ. To capture a thousand hearts demands a thousand devices." This is some of the best advice that I think Ovid had to offer in the book.Another good piece of advice had to do with sex. Ovid points out on pages 212-213 that it's important for the woman to be equally as satisfied in bed as the man is. I think that today sex is still a taboo topic but if it weren't so, this idea would be just as relevant. Women can be just as horny as men and there's no reason that they shouldn't receive the same gratifications as the men get to every single time.Ovid also tells men that in order to keep the woman they've wooed they need to be smart as well as handsome. On page 194 he says, "To be loved you must show yourself lovable - something good looks alone can never achieve... [to] keep your girl, it's best you have gifts of the mind in addition to physical charms." This is probably the best advice. He tells men that it's important to keep educating themselves because it's something women can be attracted to if looks go away with age.Some other good pieces of advice included the following ideas: don't have incest, don't give drugs to women when seducing them, be polite, be a gentleman, be early, give compliments, don't get jealous, be private about sex, age shouldn't matter and sometimes older women are better (at least in bed) and finally, don't point out flaws.Now we can get into all the wrong advice that Ovid had to offer. You have to wonder how Ovid got all of these ideas. I mean, what makes him such an expert?! Is it just the fact that he's had sex with lots of women? To be crude, who's to say that it's not just because he had a large penis? Sometimes that's all a woman needs, but that doesn't make him an expert on how to truly get a woman to fall in love. Ovid viewed women as objects...basically just something to fuck. I mean he was willing to give the men advice on how to get (or get with, rather) women, but the only advice he gave to women was how to be good to the men (i.e. how to dress, act, etc.). There...

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