Ovid's "Art of Love": An essay response

Essay by Prue750College, Undergraduate December 2006

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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...