These aspects are affection, respect, recognition, commitment, trust, care, and open and honest communication - rather than the customary forms stemming from gender stereotypes, domination, control, ego and aggression.
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For this reason, the first chapter of her book primarily focuses on what she thinks the definition of love is, which she explains includes components such as care, affection, trust, respect, honesty, communication, and commitment.
Hooks believes love is more of an interactive process.
She focuses on romantic love and believes that in American culture men have been socialized to mistrust the value and power of love while women have been socialized to be loving in most situations – even when their need to receive love goes unmet. First she explains her position and introduces an external work which is primarily about that aspect of love.
Then she provides suggestions on how to reverse our cultural training and become more open to giving and receiving love.
She claims that a standard definition of love must include spiritual growth for one's self and others.
Although she refers to biblical messages, she does not promote religion; on the contrary, she encourages spiritual thinking.
Hooks also points out what she sees to be the roots of the problems regarding modern day love: gender stereotypes, domination, control, ego, and aggression (Nonfiction Book Review).
Hooks also discusses is the way, starting from a very young age, boys and girls are constantly being knocked down and told to fit into the tiny boxes of characteristics that are expected of them.