HONS 295 [Honors]

Love, Sex, and Friendship (HONS 295) [Honors] – Fall 2017

Love, Sex, and Friendship is not a class I was expecting to take, nor was it one I was expecting to like, initially. Freshmen are signed up for classes by college staff their first semester, and while they do have some say over which classes they will be taking, some come out of nowhere, like this one did for me. This class was an interdisciplinary special topics honors class — which, to me, at the start of my freshman year, meant absolutely nothing. I didn’t know what to expect when I walked into the class on the first day, but by the time I walked out, I felt that I had learned an incredible amount and had learned to think about love in completely new ways.

Love, Sex, and Friendship covers exactly the topics that it says, but we discussed them in the class in ways I’d never thought about. The class was taught by our honors professor Dr. Adam Blincoe, who has a degree in philosophy. However, a philosophical approach was only one of the ways he approached the class material. Different sections and source materials took theological, psychological, or even literary approaches to discussing various types of love.

One of the approaches that I found the most intriguing was the section of class in which we discussed the Christian approach to love. I am fairly familiar with the standard interpretation of Christianity’s relationship to love, but the reading for this section opened my eyes to a different interpretation. The piece was C.S. Lewis’s The Four Loves, and the way he described love was that there were two different types of love: need-love and gift-love, essentially “taking” and “giving” loves. This is what I wrote my essay (see below) for this section of the class on. In my essay, I answer the question, “Can two people have a healthy relationship with only one of the types of love between them?”. Writing this essay not only helped me to understand the concepts of “need-love” and “gift-love” better, it also helped me to understand the dynamics of different types of relationships we see in around us in our everyday lives.

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This interpretation of love, and all the other varied and intriguing interpretations of love that we discussed in this class, really opened my eyes into thinking about love. We see and feel love everyday in our lives, but how often do we stop and think about what type of love it is? Or why is it happening? Or how does it influence us? I never had before this class, and I am incredibly glad that I had the opportunity to take this class that, at the beginning of the semester, I had no idea what to expect from.