Queen's University

Make this a perfect Valentine's Day: Queen's University Professors

2012-02-21

Buying the perfect present

Valentine’s 2012: Traditional vs. Memorable. If you are looking for a Valentine’s gift that makes a lasting impression, School of Business professor John Pliniussen has some advice: skip the roses, French perfume, Danish chocolate, or earrings from Tiffany & Co unless of course you want to be “traditional.”

According to Dr. Pliniussen, research shows gifts that makes memories (such as a trip to a spa) make people happier than receiving a product. “Instead of buying chocolates, you should make the chocolates together. Instead of buying flowers, take a trip to a spa. The chocolates will be eaten and the flowers will fade. It’s so easy to buy a gift card but the research is clear -- experiences are what truly make you happy,” says Dr. Pliniussen. “Receiving a gift provides a moment of happiness, but experiences and memories last forever.”

 But no matter what, do not forget to do something special for your loved ones .

Dr. Pliniussen is only available for phone interviews.

iLove you (smartphones and romance)

Got love? There's an app for that! Media and film professor and digital trends analyst Sidneyeve Matrix can speak to innovations in digital romance---how we're hooking up, breaking off, and stepping out on our romantic partners through Facebook, Twitter, texting, and online dating sites.

Dr. Matrix is an expert in understanding the impact of social trends in digital and mobile media use. She can also discuss how digital intimacy, family bonds, and virtual friendships grow (and wither) via newer technologies including social gaming, geolocational check-ins, and even smartphone apps.

Love for Sale: Chocolate and the Consumerism of St. Valentine’s Day

Although the roots of St. Valentine’s Day date back to the Middle Ages, we are indebted to the Victorians for many of our most popular features of the celebration, including greeting cards, chocolate and other confectionary in heart-shaped boxes.

Less about love and more about money, the material history of the holiday, including the packaging and marketing of St. Valentine’s Day gifts and accessories, corresponds with social, cultural, economic and technological changes of the past two centuries. Heather Evans is available to speak about the history of chocolate, confectionary, and greeting cards, and their roles in the development of this sweet, modern holiday.

Professor Evans is only available for phone interviews.

How to use Jane Austen to brush up your romance skills

Attention men – do you need help finding a date? Queen’s University English professor Robert Morrison says single males looking to attract women should spend a little more time reading Jane Austen novels and less time in the gym.

“Men today can still learn a great deal by reading Jane Austen and what she has to say on love, relationships, the battle of the sexes, hope, promiscuity, courtship, and happiness. Austen wrote some of the most powerful love stories in Western literature, and though 200 years have passed since her novels were published, they still have a remarkable ability to speak to the modern world. Her six novels continue to exert a profound influence on our culture.

Robert Morrison is Queen’s National Scholar and an expert in Romanticism and early nineteenth-century literature. His edition of Austen’s final novel, Persuasion, was recently published by Harvard University Press: http://www.hup.harvard.edu/catalog.php?recid=31301.

To arrange an interview, please contact communication officers Anne Craig at 613-533-2877 or anne.craig@queensu.ca or Michael Onesi at 613.533.6000 ext. 77513 or michael.onesi@queensu.at Queen’s University News and Media Services Department in Kingston, Ont., Canada.

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