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What are the misconceptions of love shown in Ten Things I Hate About You.

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me1124 | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 3) eNoter

Posted October 25, 2013 at 3:18 AM via web

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What are the misconceptions of love shown in Ten Things I Hate About You.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted October 26, 2013 at 1:14 PM (Answer #1)

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One large misconception about love that the film presents is its predictability.  While it is a great film for acting performances by Stiles and Ledger, the reality is that love is shown to follow an almost cliched path.  There is instant repulsion between Kat and Patrick, followed by the obligatory falling in love through public display, and the "seemingly impromptu, but completely staged" first kiss.  In the end, love is so complex that it does not follow such a clear trajectory.  

Part of being in love involves a certain amout of hurt in that one is accepting another person into their own sense of identity.  This is a disfiguring process that is involved in love and this process is far from clear.  For example, consider what Tony Kushner writes about love:  "It's not always kind to be gentle and soft, there's a genuine violence softness and kindness visit on people."  When he describes the nuances involved in human emotion and in love, there is a lack of clarity present.  This complex and nuanced process is not featured in the film.  Rather, love is shown to be very simplistic and devoid of much in way of intricacies so that in a period of two hours, people get angry, fall out of love, and then reconcile without any notin of past hurt.  In this light, one has to concede that this is not love.  Love is a painful and challenging process because it involves change and evolution.  When Woody Allen ends Annie Hall with the line about how the brother says, "I would [turn him in], but I need the eggs," such a sad complexity in which the human predicament's complex relationship with love is shown is not what is featured at the end of 10 Things I Hate About You.  This is where one can see a definite misperception offered about what love is in the film.

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