It's one of those words with which most people are familiar, but have vastly differing opinions of what it means. It summons visions of men women with small tokens of affection and asking their hand in marriage on bended knee.For social scientists, studies of courtship usually look at the process of "mate selection." (Social scientists, among whom I number myself from time to time, will never be accused of being romantics.) For the purpose of this article the , prior to the early 20th century, courtship involved one man and one woman spending intentional time together to get to know each other with the expressed purpose of evaluating the other as a potential husband or wife.
I just wanted to get some Dutch practice because they had been notoriously hard to hang out with as friends!
You generally don't meet someone up for coffee or lunch; you have to propose a time long in advance and understand the Dutch need to be organised; something which contrasts with my preference for spontaneity.
The man and the woman usually were members of the same community, and the courting usually was done in the woman's home in the presence (and under the watchful eye) of her family, most often Mom and brothers.
However, between the late 1800s and the first few decades of the 1900s the new system of "dating" added new stages to courtship.
I had only ever seen it on some American TV shows, and not really thought much about it.
I wasn't interested in actually finding a date though.The programs come in response to the country's population woes.Due primarily to younger generations losing interest in getting married and starting families, the population has actually shrunk by more than 1 million since 2010.When they're done, they follow up with people they find most compatible.If the conversation gets too awkward, a "marriage-promotion committee" will step in to smooth things alone.Dutch culture is different to others I am used to; everyone has been very nice and polite to me, and nobody speaks English to me, but after a brief first conversation they tend to disappear, and there is little hope of seeing them again due to their always packed schedules. Luckily I am finally getting through to some people and starting to socialise properly, hanging out for hours or even almost an entire day, speaking just in Dutch.