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ERIC Number: ED477339
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003-Mar-21
Pages: 20
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Reading and Writing the Romance Novel: An Analysis of Romance Fiction and Its Place in the Community College Classroom.
Neylon, Virginia Lyn
The popular romance novel overlaps other genres in that it shares characteristics of mysteries, thrillers, erotica, adventure, etc.; however, it can be differentiated from those genres by the fact that the central story is not the mystery or adventure but rather the romance between the hero and heroine. The Romance Writers of America organization agrees that the central love story in romance "concerns two people falling in love and struggling to make the relationship work." The marriage of the mode and medium defines the parameters of the popular romance novel. Readers knows that the heroine and hero will suffer through challenges and obstacles to their union, but perhaps the journey and not the destination keeps readers reading. After defining and describing the popular romance novel, this paper considers how these novels affect women writers and readers. The paper provides a historical overview of how a group of women writers for women readers developed in the 17th and 18th centuries in England, when there was a cultural shift in the beliefs surrounding the marital state--although this shift affected the way women and men felt about marriage, it did not increase women's power within marriage. It finds that romance novels illustrate a female ideology where women and men form loving partnerships and work together in mutual wants and desires. It then discusses the place that romance novels (with their accessible language) should hold at the community college level, noting that on one level, romance novels can be used in skill training when assigned as reading, subjected to detailed analysis, and used as a model for writing, and on another level, instructors can use romance novels to teach students about the literary tradition that created the genre. (Contains 18 references.) (NKA)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A