Romance has been theoretically associated with the estrangements created by modern individualism. As demonstrated in courtship stories told by young men from the Murik Lakes in Papua New Guinea, the relationship of Murik culture to modernity has not resulted in narratives that privilege a construction of courtship in which the self merges with the beloved. Desire is not defined in terms of romantic love but is set amid events that are scrupulously fixed in the foregrounds of specific times and exact locations. In these tales, representations of personhood are organized by a Homeric chronotope rather than by a romantic one. Although masculinity in Murik culture has undergone important transformations in the 20th century, its sociology has not given way to the discourse of modern individualism.
- Papua New Guinea
- Sepik River