Meaning-making Through Love Stories in Cultural Perspectives: Expressions, Rituals and Symbols

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The meaning of love differs across social and cultural contexts. These meanings are often constructed and reconstructed through narrations. Love narrations impact strongly on the identity of individuals across their life span and can include different concepts of love, descriptions of love expressions, symbols and meanings. This chapter presents love narrations from individuals in Japan, the US, South Africa, Israel and Germany. The aim of this chapter is to explore and compare love concepts and narrations of individuals of different cultural, gender, religious and language contexts. The research design followed a qualitative study design, using semi-structured interviews with 21 questions, exploring narrations on love and culture. The chapter presents findings from a study of 22 individuals of different cultural origin. Findings provide new insight into concepts of love, feelings associated with love, expressions of love, rituals of love, love symbols and stories of love. Love contributes strongly to meaning-making in connection with the personal and cultural, as well as the environmental context. Conclusions are drawn and recommendations for future research are given.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Handbook of Love
Subtitle of host publicationTranscultural and Transdisciplinary Perspectives
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages28
ISBN (Electronic)9783030459963
ISBN (Print)9783030459956
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2021


  • Culture
  • Feelings
  • Love
  • Love concepts
  • Love expression
  • Love stories
  • Meaningmaking
  • Narrations
  • Rituals of love
  • Symbols of love

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology
  • General Social Sciences


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