In Kim filed for divorce from Kris. Evil Tongue

In
Guillaume de Lorris and Jean de Meun’s French classic, The Romance of the Rose, the personification and symbolism tropes
and the philosophies of obsession and disrespect towards women have impacted
contemporary popular culture. These impacts are seen mainly through the media
because that is the main source of information for people today.

The
characters in The Romance of the Rose impact
how our culture operates on a social level. Throughout the poem, emotions are
personified as real people. In the poem and in contemporary popular culture,
Evil Tongue, Jealousy, and Fear keep us from love.  

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One
of the characters from this poem that we see regularly throughout our culture
is Evil Tongue. In the story plot, Evil Tongue protects the roses from lovers
by his evil speech and spreading rumors and lies about them. He kept the main
character, Guillaume, away from the rose flower he loved by scaring him and
Fair Welcome away with his evil speech. In contemporary popular culture Evil Tongue
also keeps people away from love because they are offended by the evil speech. Sadly,
this evil speech has become a normality in today’s culture. When Evil Tongue is
effective, fights, breakups, and deaths occur. A good example of Evil Tongue
causing a fight to occur is when Amanda Bynes verbally attacked Rihanna in 2013.
Amanda Bynes offended Rihanna by saying, “You look so ugly trying to be white.
Chris Brown beat you because you’re not pretty enough.” Evil Tongue caused a
feud between Amanda and Rihanna. This relationship is still tense because
Amanda wanted to feel superior over Rihanna in that moment. An example of one
of the many breakups Evil Tongue has caused is between Kris Humphries and Kim
Kardashian. After Kim was complaining about their housing situation, Kris
snapped at her saying, “By the time you have kids and they’re in school, no one
will care about you.” Shortly after this evil speech, Kim filed for divorce
from Kris. Evil Tongue kept the two from being able to love each other. Extreme
cases of Evil Tongue, like the suicide of Megan Meier, can lead the victim to
kill themselves. After a guy she liked started sending her cruel messages, “The
world would be a better place without you.” she hung herself in her closet.
Evil Tongue stops people from being able to love one another through his evil
speech.

Another
character from the poem that is a major influence in culture is Jealousy. After
Guillaume kisses the rose, Jealousy imprisoned Fair Welcome and built a huge
castle around all the roses. Jealousy works closely with Evil Tongue in real
life too because when one becomes jealous, they start to say evil things to the
person causing them this feeling. Jealousy is present in many forms of media,
this influences everyone who watches it. Thus, contributing to the characteristics
of our culture. During an episode of Stranger Things, Eleven got jealous when
she saw Mike, her love interest, hanging out with his friend Maxine. When she
saw their interaction, she threw Maxine off her skateboard with her
telekinesis.

Fear
is another character from the poem that is affecting our culture every day. In
the poem, Fear works alongside Jealousy and Evil Tongue to defend the roses
from lovers. Near the end of the poem, Fear defeats Discretion, Boldness and
Security in a fight for the roses. Fear keeps people from doing many things in
life. Most of the time, Fear keeps people from speaking up because they have a
fear of getting hurt. An example of Fear keeping someone from speaking up for
themselves is Kesha. Kesha was afraid to speak up for herself after she was
raped by her record producer, Dr. Luke. Fear kept her from speaking out and
getting help because she was afraid of what he might do to her. There are many
rape accusations just now coming to the surface that are ten to twenty years
old. Many of these rape victims were sexually abused by high-level men and women.
Victims feared that if they spoke out against these people of power, they
wouldn’t be believed and could get hurt from speaking the truth. Fear can also
keep people from loving. In The Romance
of the Rose, Fear kept Guillaume from being able to love the rose through
the use of thorns. Guillaume didn’t want to get hurt by the thorns even though
he longed for the flower. Many people struggle with this dilemma in today’s
culture. They want to love someone, but they don’t want to get hurt by them.
This causes many people to not open up to others due to the fear of getting
hurt.

The
philosophy of obsession is a recurring theme throughout the poem that is also evident
through all aspects of our culture. Guillaume fell deeply in love with a rose
at the beginning of the poem. This obsession with the rose carries on until the
end when he is able to pluck the rose from the garden. His obsession with the
rose caused him great agony and pain because it was all he could think about. Obsession
is becoming an increasing problem with technology use. According to the Common
Sense Census, “Teenagers spend nine hours a day on their phone while tweens
spend six hours a day.” All of this time on their phones is taking a toll on
their sleep, weight, and behavior. UCLA Chancellor Gene Block explained at a
press conference about the negative effects of technology obsession, “Perhaps
the most dramatic impact is the reduction in the amount of sleep. Fifty years
ago, the average adult got eight and a half hours of sleep; now we average less
than seven hours a night. Bright light reduces levels of the hormone melatonin,
which regulates sleep, and decreases leptin, which makes you feel full. At the
same time, bright light increases ghrelin, which makes you feel hungry.” Humans
are becoming so obsessed with technology that their physical health is being
harmed from it. This is also inhibiting their social skills. According to Psych
Central, “In addition, social skills and face to face interactions are damaged
through impersonal communication because the individual is unable to express
body language, tone, voice, touch and facial expressions through text message.”
Technology is the rose of modern times. It is what people are obsessed with and
just like Guillaume it is all they think about. People can’t even safely drive
without going on their phone! Just like in The
Romance of the Rose people disregard Reason because they are so wrapped up
with their rose.

Another
main philosophy that recurs throughout the entire poem is disrespect towards
women. When characters are describing their “rules” of love, the idea that
women are not to be trusted is repeated. When Nature speaks to Genius about
women she says, “Be sure to hold your tongues, for nothing will succeed if they
share your secrets, so proud and overbearing are they, with such biting,
poisonous, hurtful tongues” (de Meun 257). Nature goes on to say that you can
love women, but you can never confide in them. Just like in Jealousy’s case,
the media acts as to influence the population. Damon Young’s statistics prove
this to be true, “The theme that women’s feelings aren’t really to be trusted
by men drives (an estimated) 72.81 percent of the sitcoms we watch, 31.2
percent of the books we read, and 98.9 percent of the conversations men have
with other men about the women in their lives.” Men have a harder time
believing something when a woman tells them versus when a man tells them. They
believe the women’s feelings are false or overreacted on. This disrespect and
lack of trust towards women is present when Guillaume is around the rose
flower. The rose flower symbolizes a woman that Guillaume has fallen madly in
love with. Near the beginning of the poem, Guillaume wants to kiss the flower.
Fair Welcome tells him he cannot kiss the flower because Chastity doesn’t allow
kisses. Instead of obeying her wishes and moving on, he kept pushing until
Venus allowed the kiss to happen. This disrespect towards women is also evident
throughout the main story plot. The rose flower is being protected from
Guillaume, but as in the example before this, Guillaume won’t let it go. He
continues to try and win the love of the rose flower even though it is clear
that is not what she wants. The last example of disrespect towards women in
this literary work is at the very end of the poem. After Venus captures the
castle, Guillaume goes in to find the rose flower. Fair Welcome told Guillaume
he may love the rose as long as he didn’t do anything that was not in the good
will of him or the rose. Guillaume disobeys his wishes when he begins to probe
the flower and pluck at its leaves. Fair Welcome reminds him of the promise and
how his actions were inappropriate, but that does not stop Guillaume. This is
also very evident right now with continuous rape and assault accusations. A
man’s disrespect towards women is most evident when they rape or
inappropriately touch women. Women tell them to stop but the men only do as
they please and disregard what women say. In many of the rape accusations the
women claim they told the men to stop and tried to get away, however, the men
did not listen to their wishes. They continued to rape and touch the women
because it is what they wanted. If men had respect for women, they would
believe and trust them the same as men and would obey their wishes.

This
novel contains many tropes and philosophies that are seen in contemporary
popular culture. The main tropes being the personification of emotions and
characters as humans and the philosophies of obsession and the disrespect
towards women. All of the personified emotions keep people from loving while
the obsession affects their physical and mental state and disrespecting women
hinder how they’re treated. 

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