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[Opinion] A 21st Century Wedding

Posted April. 11, 2005 23:41,   


“If there is a term of validity for love, I want it to be for 10,000 years.” That is a soliloquy from the movie “Chungking Express.” For Prince Charles, who married his long time lover last weekend, love’s validity term is as of April, 35 years. It is way more than Cynthia Hazan’s, a professor of psychology at Cornell University, argument of passionate love only lasting 18 to 30 months. The marriage finally took place 13 years after Charles’ secret confession of “I want to become your tampon” was disclosed to the world.

For those who expected “the prince and the princess to live happily ever after,” or remember Princess Diana, who once was chubby when she first got married, but who displayed a sad maturity as she grew old, the wedding might have felt uncomfortable as their fantasy was shattered. Marrying different spouses, scandals, liaisons, and remarrying a divorced woman in her late 50s after bereavement! With a foul character, Prince Charles did not manage to increase his popularity, and so there are quite a few who say that Prince William should be the next King directly.

It is also a tragedy for the Crown Prince to be born at a time of long average life expectancy and a long wait to be the next heir. However, he had a post menopausal wedding, making the old Crown Prince a prince of a 21st century in a post-modern romantic drama. We are at an aging period where average life expectancy is 76 and 81 years for men and women, respectively. In a society where the divorce rate is 166.7 per 1000 people, 20 to 30 years is too long to live alone whether in the middle or in one’s golden age.

Author of “Anatomy of Love,” Helen Fisher, a professor at Rutgers University, said there are three types of love: drug-addition-like lust, compulsive romantic love and long lasting affection. It is no problem if these feelings are toward just one person. However, it is a problem because these feelings can be formed towards different people simultaneously. To fall in the stage of affection, she advises to do fresh things with the partner to increase dopamine excretion. It is a wonder what original things Camilla Parker-Bowles, the final winner to overcome young and pretty Princess Diana, did with Prince Charles.

Kim Sun-duk, Editorial writer, yuri@donga.com