Romance and love are in a state of crisis: Statistically speaking, young women today are living romantic lives of all kinds—but they’re still feeling bogged down by social, cultural, economic, and familial pressures to love in a certain way. Young women in the modern world have greater flexibility than ever when it comes to who we choose to love and how we choose to love them; but while social circumstances may have changed since our parents’ generation, certain life expectations remain. In Outdated, Samhita Mukhopadhyay addresses the difficulty of negotiating loving relationships within the borderlands of race, culture, class, and sexuality—and of holding true to our convictions and maintaining our independence while we do it.
Outdated analyzes how different forms of media, cultural norms, family pressure, and even laws, are produced to scare women into believing that if they don’t devote themselves to finding a man, they’ll be doomed to a life of loneliness and shame. Using interviews with young women that are living around, between, within, and outside of the romantic industrial complex, Mukhopadhyay weaves a narrative of the alternative ways that women today have elected to live their lives, and in doing so offers a fresh, feminist look at an old topic: How do diverse, independent young women date happily and successfully—and outside of the box?