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The Wheel Theory of Love

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shannon bragiel

on 30 June 2014

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Transcript of The Wheel Theory of Love

Proposed by sociologist Ira Reiss.
The wheel of theory suggests that love is developed and maintained through four stages (Williams, Sawyer & Wahlstrom, 2013).
The four stages could be seen in the film Forrest Gump with the relationship between Forrest and Jenny.
The Wheel Theory
Young Jenny and Forrest
When first meeting a person, a person can develop rapport, which is a feeling of ease to be comfortable with that person.
Generally we are able to communicate better with those who are more similar to us (Williams, Sawyer & Wahlstrom, 2013).
However, some people with different personalities do attract.
Stage 1: Rapport
Forrest and Jenny pray after running from her alcoholic father
Rapport leads to self-revelation, the disclosure of personal feelings (Williams, Sawyer & Wahlstrom, 2013).
Those who are comfortable with each other will confide in each other more about their personal life.
Similarities may affect a person's willingness to confide personal information (Williams, Sawyer & Wahlstrom, 2013).

Stage 2: Self- Revelation
The Wheel Theory of Love
Shannon Bragiel
Mutual Dependency- the sharing of pleasures, ideas, humor and sexual desires (Williams, Sawyer & Wahlstrom, 2013).
The couple starts exhibiting mutual behaviors such as going for walks,going to sleep together or taking trips together.
Stage 3: Mutual Dependency
Forrest and Jenny's wedding with their son, Forrest
Partners make mutual decisions, reinforce each other's goals, offer sympathy and support, and help satisfy deeper needs (Williams, Sawyer & Wahlstrom, 2013).
The relationship consists of a mutual dependence on each other. Love continues to develop as the rapport increases.
As a couple becomes closer, their dependence deepens as they become a unified couple.
Reference Page
Forrest Gump. Dir. Robert Zemeckis. By Eric Roth. Perf. Tom Hanks, Robin Wright, Gary Sinise, Sally Field, and Mykelti Williamson. Paramount Pictures, 1994.

Williams, B., Sawyer, S., & Wahlstrom, C. (2013). Love: The Many Faces. Marriages, Families, Intimate Relationships: A Practical Introduction (). Boston: Pearson/Allyn and Bacon.


Stage 4: Intimacy Need Fulfillment
Jenny and Forrest meet at a young age on the bus to school.
Once they meet they develop a rapport and become inseparable. They become very close to each other and become dependent on the other. Jenny comes from a lower class family and her father abuses her. Forrest comes from a wealthier household with his single mother. They come from different social classes but share the same social values.
Jenny and Forrest become close at a young age. They confide with each other. Forrest is there for Jenny when she goes through the difficulties of experiencing an abusive father and comforts her at night when she sneaks into his room cause she is scared. The two comfort each other through hardships.
Jenny and Forrest don't always have the perfect relationship. She goes off on as a peace activist who gets caught up in drugs. Forrest joins the army and goes to war. He then becomes successful in his future businesses. The two always seem to find their way back to each other. When they find their way back, they always seem to pick up where they left off and become a couple again. Forrest experiences sex for the first time with Jenny.
Forrest and Jenny had a tough relationship with lots of hardships through the span of knowing each other. After cleaning up her act Jenny gets back in touch with Forrest. Forrest discovers her has a child with Jenny and she proposes to Forrest. The two finally get married and live together. The depend on each other to care and raise their son. Forrest offers support to Jenny when she becomes sick from a virus and takes care of her up until her death. Forrest and Jenny have a complex relationship throughout the movie, but their love prevails and they always find their way back to each other. They go through the 4 stages of the wheel of love and as their love developed throughout the stages they learn how much they mean to each other. In the end they end up together and are able to be a happy family for the short being until Jenny;s death.
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