Modern dating practices

In some societies, the parents or community propose potential partners, and then allow limited dating to determine whether the parties are suited.

In Japan, there is a such type of courtship called Omiai, with similar practices called "Xiangqin" (相親) in the Greater China Area.

A courtship may be an informal and private matter between two people or may be a public affair, or a formal arrangement with family approval.

Traditionally, in the case of a formal engagement, it has been perceived that it is the role of a male to actively "court" or "woo" a female, thus encouraging her to understand him and her receptiveness to a proposal of marriage.

In the earlier 1800s, young adults were expected to court with the intention of finding a marriage partner, rather than for social reasons.

In more traditional forms of Christianity, this concept of courtship has been retained, with John Piper defining courtship and distinguishing this concept from dating, stating that: Courtship ordinarily begins when a single man approaches a single woman by going through the woman's father, and then conducts his relationship with the woman under the authority of her father, family, or church, whichever is most appropriate.

Courtship always has marriage as its direct goal...

Dating, a more modern approach, begins when either the man or the woman initiates a more-than-friends relationship with the other, and then they conduct that relationship outside of any oversight or authority. Christian minister Patricia Bootsma delineates this distinction, writing that in contrast to the modern conception of dating, in "courtship, time together in groups with family or friends is encouraged, and there is oversight by and accountability to parents or mentors".

However, by the Jazz Age of the 1920s, dating for fun was becoming a cultural expectation, and by the 1930s, it was assumed that any popular young person would have lots of dates.

The matchmaker and parents will often exert pressure on the couple to decide whether they want to marry or not after a few dates.

Courtship in the Philippines is one known complex form of courtship.

Ivory French casket with scenes of romances – possibly a courtship gift.

Courtship is the systematic process that one undergoes in order to ensure compatibility with a lifelong partner.

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