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* * * Note: If this discussion has piqued your interest and you would like to delve further into the history of courtship and dating, I recommend any of the works by Ken Myers, Beth Bailey, Alan Carlson or Leon Kass cited throughout the article.Perhaps a good place to start would be with the Mars Hill Audio Report, If you’ve enjoyed this article, will you consider giving a tax-deductible gift to Boundless right now?The article went on to say that if, for some reason, you did not have a date on a particular night, you should keep the lights off in your dorm room so no one would know you were home.

Each party must return (or negotiate custody of) jackets, T-shirts, jewelry, CDs, etc. When do we have the DTR (defining the relationship) talk? Realizing how spiritually, psychologically and physically destructive sexual relations are outside of the bond and vow of marriage, many teens and young adults, both men and women, are committing (or re-committing) themselves to chastity. It was my aim in these articles briefly to explain from where our modern courtship and dating practices have come.

I hope this historical review has helped you to understand the courtship practices you have inherited, and can assist you in living more wisely, which is the goal of all Christians.

At the center of this 1950s youth dating culture was the act of "going steady," according to Beth Bailey.

[I]n earlier days going steady had been more like the old-fashioned 'keeping steady company.' It was a step along the path to marriage, even if many steady couples parted company before they reached the altar.

It was not earned directly through talent, looks, personality or importance and involvement in organizations, but by the way these attributes translated into the number and frequency of dates.

These dates had to be highly visible, and with many different people, or they didn't count." Ken Myers summarizes this system, " catchwords hammered home, reinforced from all sides until they became the natural vocabulary.

After World War II the norms within the dating system began to change.

By the late 1940s and early 1950s demographic realities began to sink in: There was a shortage of men.

In 1937, sociologist Willard Waller published a study in the .

His study of Penn State undergraduates detailed a "dating and rating" system based on very clear standards of popularity.

You had to rate in order to date, to date in order to rate.