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They knew what was "normal." Prior to the 20th century, "normal" was determined within families and local communities, but now a "higher authority," with wide-spread circulation and readership, began to form a national consciousness. With the onset of the sexual revolution the question arose, "Why would a man court and woo a woman when he could gain a chief benefit of marriage, namely sexual gratification, for free with no commitment?" (Friendship "with benefits" is a contemporary example.) Closely related to this is the invention of birth control.So these are four important cultural forces in the early part of the 20th century that assisted in moving our culture from the older courtship system that existed prior to the late 19th century, to a courtship system that includes "dating," which, I will argue in the next article, is much more ambiguous and confusing.I will also talk about dating itself (including the origination of the word If you’ve enjoyed this article, will you consider giving a tax-deductible gift to Boundless right now?
However, between the late 1800s and the first few decades of the 1900s the new system of "dating" added new stages to courtship.Since most young adults will marry, the process employed in finding a husband and wife is still considered courtship.However, an extra layer, what we call "dating," has been added to the process of courting.To be sure, many people remain puzzled that someone would want to find a romantic partner online – 23% of Americans agree with the statement that “people who use online dating sites are desperate” – but in general it is much more culturally acceptable than it was a decade ago.Online dating has jumped among adults under age 25 as well as those in their late 50s and early 60s.