LOVE: THE RIGHT CHEMISTRY, writing homework help

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Toufexis Love: The Right Chemistry GUIDE TO READING GUIDE TO WRITING THINKING CRITICALLY 111 Anastasia Toufexis Love: The Right Chemistry ANASTASIA TOUFEXIS has been an associate editor of Time, senior editor of Discover, and editor in chief of Psychology Today. She has written on subjects as diverse as medicine, health has won a number of awards for her writing, including a Knight-Wallace Fellowship at the and fitness, law, the environment, education, science, and national and world news. "Toufexis the University of North Carolina, and the School of Visual Arts in New York. As you read, Oceanographic Institution. She has also lectured on science writing at Columbia University, • How would you describe the tone Toufexis adopts in this essay, at least in the begin- ning? How effective do you think this tone was for her original Time magazine readers? How appropriate would it be for a college paper? • Given her purpose and audience, how helpful is the visual in helping readers under- stand her rather technical explanation? Love is a romantic designation for a most ordinary biological —or, shall we say, chemical?-process. A lot of nonsense is talked and written about it. -Greta Garbo to Melvyn Douglas in Ninotchka - 1 Oab 4 .K., let's cut out all this nonsense about romantic love. Let's bring some scientific precision to the party. Let's put love under a microscope. When rigorous people with Ph.D.s after their names do that, what they see is not some silly, senseless thing. No, their probe reveals that love rests firmly on the foundations of evolution, biology and chemistry. What seems on the surface to be irrational, intoxicated behavior is in fact part of nature's master strategy-a vital force that has helped humans survive, thrive and multiply through thousands of years. Says Michael Mills, a psychology professor at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles: "Love is our ancestors love probably first began to blossom or at least that the first cascades of neurochemi- cals began flowing from the brain to the bloodstream to produce goofy grins and sweaty palms as men and women gazed deeply into each other's eyes. When man- kind graduated from scuttling around on all fours to walking on two legs, this change made the whole person visible to fellow human beings for the first time. Sexual organs were in full display, as were other characteristics, from the color of eyes to the span of shoulders. As never before, each individual had a unique allure. When the sparks flew, new ways of making love enabled sex to become a ro- mantic encounter, not just a reproductive act. Although mounting mates from the rear was, and still is, the method favored among most animals, humans began to enjoy face-to-face couplings; both looks and personal attraction became a much greater part of the equation. 5 Romance served the evolutionary pur- pose of pulling males and females into long-term partnership, which was essential to child rearing. On open grasslands, one parent would have a hard-and 3 whispering in our ears." It was on the plains of Africa about 4 million years ago, in the early days of the human species, that the notion of romantic
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