Blog 5: Flirting-yay or nay?

Simmel talks about flirtation being the “the kind of sociability that epitomizes the duality between conformity and differentiation…” and that it “alternates between consent and denial”(294). He calls it a kind of play that ends once consent is given or denied. He calls it the lightest and most playful type of interaction and makes it seem like women are very much in charge of the game. Although the man’s attitude has a lot to do with where the game goes and all, depending on if he’s interested or not. My point here is, that Simmel makes flirting seem like a pleasant and innocent interaction of sorts. However, if we take into account Gilman’s ideas, flirtation may not be so innocent. According to Gilman, women were at a young age taught that they have to lure in the best possible husband and that there are a few techniques for that. There is obviously looking as fabulous as possible, but flirtation can indeed be a powerful weapon towards luring that special (rich) prince charming. When looked at it from Gilman’s perspective, flirtation is a rational tool used to acquire something in the end. That something is the rich man, who will become a woman’s husband and with him comes all his wealth and protection and security for the rest of your life. Even today, when flirtation is in session, it is almost never innocent or playful. There is always a goal at the end of this interaction (from women AND men).This idea contrasts sharply with Gimmel’s innocent perspective of flirtation. So, gentlemen, next time you engage in some “innocent flirtation”…BEWARE.


5 responses to “Blog 5: Flirting-yay or nay?

  1. I totally agree with the comparison of these two theorists. I think it was a great idea to compare Simmel’s and Gilman’s ideas about flirting because they both have such different concepts about its purpose. Despite their different viewpoints, I agree with both of them. Both women and men flirt for different reasons. Some people flirt for the purpose of being playful (Simmel), and some people flirt in hopes of attracting a partner to take care of them (Gilman). I think it all depends on the person and the circumstance.

  2. I really enjoyed reading your post, your last sentence enlighted the reading. I have to agree with the previous post from srosenberg123, it all depends on who is flirting and in what circumstances. You can have someone flirt for future sexual encounters, or to find someone that will take care of them, but I do believe in innocent flirtation. Some just do it because it is socially acceptable and something in routine. We all know what flirting is and what it can lead to. People may do it with no intent to harm others and simply use flirtation as a tecgnique to meet someone whether its for good or bad reasons.

  3. i agree in that people who engage in flirting may have underlying motives for doing so,for women today it may be the pursuit of a partner who can take care of them and provide for them which would agree with Gilman’s ideas. Although i think GIlman would argue the point that it would be socially unacceptable for women to initiate any sort of flirtation with a man because it would be deviant from the norms women are supposed to follow. Since women were considered unequal in comparison to men they would be faced with a lot of negative feedback for their actions.

  4. I think the reason behind why individuals flirt, is to always get something out of it at the end. Individuals flirt because they maybe find that other person attractive, or just because they want to establish a close relationship. Most importatly, I think people flirt to fulfill pleasure and satisfaction at the end.

  5. “So, gentlemen, next time you engage in some “innocent flirtation”…BEWARE.” – Great read, especially the last line. I love how it is directed towards men. To me it seems you are more in favor for Gilman’s idea about flirtation and so am I. The times have passed when flirting was just for fun, it is no longer an innocent gesture. When many people flirt now they have a specific goal and use certain “ways” to obtain their goal.

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