He said: ‘The idea is we must not leave our love lives to chance.We plan our education, our careers and our finances but we’re still uncomfortable with the idea that we should plan our love lives.With soaring divorce rates and record numbers of single-parent households in the West, researchers suggest it is time to rethink the Western approach to love.Harvard academic Dr Robert Epstein has studied the subject of arranged marriages for eight years, looking at the approaches taken in cultural groups including Indian, Pakistani and Orthodox Jewish.
As America expanded multi-culturally, this custom filtered through as certain ethnic groups sought to preserve cultural and class traditions.
He has interviewed more than 100 couples in arranged marriages to assess their strength of feeling and studied his findings against more than 30 years of research into love in Western and arranged marriages.
His work suggests that feelings of love in love matches begin to fade by as much as a half in 18 months, whereas the love in the arranged marriages tends to grow gradually, surpassing the love in the unarranged marriages at about the five-year mark.
Ten years on, the affection felt by those in arranged marriages is typically twice as strong.
Dr Epstein believes this is because Westerners leave their love lives to chance, or fate, often confusing love with lust, whereas those in other cultures look for more than just passion.