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a man and a woman

The tragic ending of love seems to occur when relationships experience problems and break apart simply because of some sort of outside complication. If a man and a woman were isolated from the harsh realities of the outside world, their relationship would probably last longer and be less engulfed in conflict. Although relationships do not always end when there is some sort of conflict, a strain is put on the love the two have for each other. It is most definitely a tragedy that a couples surroundings and everyday harsh realities play a large role in whether or not their relationship will last. Social standards of the time are a major outside influence on how well a relationship works, and how long a relationship lasts. As Gordimer shows in her short story, Town and Country Lovers, social conventions play a large role in a couple's relationship. Although the two couples in the story do not have relationships of the same scenario, they are both in love with the opposite sex. The two couples, one being from the town and one being from the country, consist of an African woman and a Caucasian man. They have to sneak and lie just to be together. Because of the social conventions of the time, as soon as the law hears about them living together, they are taken to court. Both women make faulty statements to save the men that they love, and their relationship ultimately has to end. Chekhov reveals another example of strain being put on a couple because of social standards in his short story, The Lady with a Pet Dog. The man and woman in this story both are married but fall in love with one another. They were not currently married because of love; they had gotten married because, due to this time period, people were forced to marry another based solely on social standing. This system forced them to create a love for their chosen spouse. Now they both have two relationships on their hands that will probably not work out due to socie...

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