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Attitudes toward Love: A Reexamination

Author(s): Dennis E. Hinkle and Michael J. Sporakowski


Source: Journal of Marriage and Family, Vol. 37, No. 4, Special Section: Macrosociology of the
Family (Nov., 1975), pp. 764-767
Published by: National Council on Family Relations
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/350827 .
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Attitudes Toward Love: A Reexamination*
DENNIS E. HINKLE
AND
MICHAEL J. SPORAKOWSKI**
VirginiaPolytechnic Institute and State University
The Knox-SporakowskiAttitudes Towards Love scale was subjected to factor analy-
sis. Principal component analysis indicated unidimensionality of the scale. Addition-
al analyses suggested the possibility of three subscales. Labels for the subscales were
assigned. Suggestions for further research with the scale were made.

Knox and Sporakowski (1968) reported on married less than 5 years, and persons
the development and use of a scale which married more than 20 years. The resulting
measured an individual's expressed attitudes scale (Knox, 1971) included 30 items of 40
towards love on a continuum from "Ro- which discriminated at the p < .01 level and
mantic" to "Conjugal." This scale had been were judged by Knox as being most useful.
developed using the "panel of judges" ANALYSIS AND FINDINGS
technique and a high and low quartile
comparison of results as the basis for an item The present study was an attempt to clarify
analysis. Twenty-nine items out of the what the original Knox-Sporakowski scale is
original 200 significantly discriminated be- measuring in hopes of assessing its utility in
tween the groups compared. Original find- future as well as past research. The general
ings indicated that: females were less assumption of this study was that the
romantic in attitudes towards love than Knox-Sporakowski scale is unidimensional,
males; with increasing age both males and but it was also assumed that several
females became less romantic in orientations; intercorrelated subscales exist. Thus factor
and, for males, becoming engaged led to a analysis methodology, specifically, principal
more realistic attitude toward love (females component analysis, was employed to
had similar attitudes whether they were investigate these assumptions. Principal
engaged or not). component analysis was selected as the most
Kanin, Davidson and Scheck (1970) appropriate factor analytic methodology for
discuss male-female differentials in the this investigation since the study was to
experience of heterosexual love, and conclude investigate the total variation of the scale
that labeling "more" or "less romantic" may items without regard to whether the variance
be unwarranted or fruitless. was common or unique.
More recently, Knox (1970) used a scale The subjects used in this investigation were
that included 84 items in measuring attitudes 234 undergraduate students enrolled in
towards love across a wider range of age MHFD 3200, The Individual and Marriage,
groups. He found that: conceptions of love at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State
vary across stages of marriage; and, a University. These students completed the
romantic conception of love is not incompat- original Knox-Sporakowski scale as part of
ible with marriages that have been in the materials used in the section of the course
existence more than 20 years. The compari- dealing with love as a motivation for
sons involved high school seniors, persons marriage. The first step in the data analysis
was the determination of the 29x29 correla-
*Data for this study were compiled between tion matrix for the scale items using
September, 1973, and December, 1974. BMD-03D (correlation with item deletion) to
pairwise delete all missing data (maximum
**Department of Management, Housing and Family
Development, College of Home Economics, Virginia pairs deleted for any scale item -- 7). This
Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, correlation matrix was then used as input to
Virginia 24061. BMD-08M (factor analysis).

764 JOURNAL OF MARRIAGE AND THE FAMILY November 1975


TABLE1. INITIALPRINCIPALCOMPONENTS
ANALYSIS:TRUNCATEDMODEL
Factor
Item 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
1 0.54 --0.08 --0.07 --0.19 --0.04 --0.22 --0.03 --0.21
2 0.38 --0.06 0.45 0.14 --0.37 --0.10 0.32 --0.08
3 0.43 0.04 0.01 --0.23 0.16 0.12 0.42 --0.31
4 0.35 0.07 0.27 0.48 --0.05 --0.22 0.01 --0.27
5 0.27 --0.13 --0.34 0.05 --0.26 --0.22 0.33 0.17
6 0.38 --0.17 --0.30 --0.10 0.40 --0.27 0.16 0.11
7 0.38 0.44 0.26 --0.30 0.01 0.04 --0.13 0.21
8 0.42 0.49 0.05 --0.17 0.23 0.04 0.10 --0.10
9 0.37 0.56 0.06 0.17 --0.12 0.00 --0.15 --0.11
10 0.39 0.40 0.22 0.13 0.08 0.05 --0.17 0.10
11 0.53 --0.41 0.28 --0.27 --0.07 0.16 0.07 0.02
12 0.38 --0.25 0.11 --0.16 0.12 0.53 --0.05 --0.30
13 0.54 0.11 --0.38 --0.34 --0.19 --0.16 --0.26 --0.02
14 0.51 0.33 --0.10 --0.19 0.03 0.05 0.41 0.09
15 0.35 --0.06 --0.37 0.32 --0.20 --0.02 --0.07 --0.37
16 0.61 --0.00 0.05 --0.15 --0.22 --0.22 --0.07 0.08
17 0.33 0.05 0.46 --0.21 0.05 --0.44 --0.18 0.10
18 0.49 0.08 --0.33 0.28 0.18 0.15 0.04 0.19
19 0.39 --0.26 --0.10 0.38 0.30 0.03 0.02 0.13
20 0.54 --0.28 --0.23 --0.05 0.07 --0.03 --0.16 --0.10
21 0.54 -0.10 0.21 0.08 0.15 --0.06 --0.12 --0.37
22 0.53 --0.27 0.13 0.29 0.07 --0.14 --0.14 0.06
23 0.53 --0.05 --0.33 --0.21 --0.35 --0.05 --0.17 0.09
24 0.34 --0.46 0.38 0.00 --0.32 0.17 0.10 0.16
25 0.41 --0.04 --0.26 --0.13 --0.18 0.43 --0.20 -0.10
26 0.41 0.12 --0.21 0.41 --0.12 --0.02 --0.07 0.12
27 0.46 0.44 0.10 0.27 --0.17 0.35 0.13 0.18
28 0.51 --0.38 0.15 0.08 0.18 0.13 --0.14 0.39
29 0.58 0.04 0.04 --0.03 0.43 --0.05 0.07 0.03

In the initial principal components analy- was rotated obliquely since it was determined
sis, eight factors were extracted using as the that the scale appeared to be unidimensional;
criterion eigenvalues greater than 1.0 as the thus, the subscales would necessarily be
cutoff for extraction of factors. The factor intercorrelated. Each of the factor structures
matrix for this initial extraction is found in was then subjected to review by the authors.
Table 1. It was concluded that, as the number of
As can be seen from the results of this factors to be rotated was reduced from seven
analysis, the scale does appear to be to two, the factor structures became more
unidimensional based upon the loadings on logical in defining distant factors, with the
the first factor or the principal component. 29x3 obliquely rotated factor matrix being
The criterion used to come to this conclusion the most logical. The factor pattern matrix is
was a factor loading of .30416 or greater presented in Table 2. As can be seen, 25 of the
which is one-half of the maximum loading on 29 items had high loadings identified with a
the principal component. The exception was unique factor; only items 3, 4, 16 and 29
item five with a factor loading of .27143. This evidenced factorial complexity; these items
29x8 factor matrix was rotated obliquely to had moderate loadings on two or more
determine if at this stage of the analysis a factors. Based upon this analysis and review
simple factor structure existed. No simple of item groupings, the names given to the
structure was evidenced. three factors were as follows:
Additional analyses were performed in an Factor I-Traditional Love-One Person
attempt to investigate the second assumption Factor II-Love Overcomes All
in this study, i.e., several intercorrelated Factor III-Irrationality
subscales exist. In these analyses, the number The matrix of intercorrelations among the
of factors rotated was reduced sequentially three factors is presented in Table 3. It
from seven to two. Each of the factor matrices indicated that there did exist, within the

November 1975 JOURNAL OF MARRIAGE AND THE FAMILY 765


TABLE 2. OBLIQUELY ROTATED FACTOR MATRIX

Factor
Item I II III
1. When you are really in love, you just aren't interested in anyone else. 0.40 0.12 0.26
5. To be in love with someone without marriage is a tragedy. 0.47 ---0.10 --0.02
6. When love hits, you know it. 0.50 ---0.79 0.08
13. Usually there are only one or two people in the world whom you could really
love and could really be happy with. 0.61 0.21 --0.08
15. It is necessary to be in love with the one you marry to be happy. 0.53 --0.02 --0.06
18. Love is regarded as a primary motive for marriage, which is good. 0.54 0.18 --0.04
19. When you love a person, you think of marrying that person. 0.33 --0.11 0.28
20. Somewhere there is an ideal mate for most people. The problem is just
finding that one. 0.54 -0.11 0.28
23. There are probably only a few people that any one person can fall in
love with. 0.59 0.07 0.05
25. Love often comes but once in a lifetime. 0.46 0.06 0.04
26. You can't make yourself love someone; it just comes or it doesn't. 0.39 0.22 --0.03

2. Love doesn't make sense. It just is. --0.20 0.26 0.54


11. When you are in love, you are usually in a daze. 0.09 --0.09 0.71
12. Love at first sight is often the deepest and most enduring type of love. 0.14 --0.05 0.42
17. Parents should not advise their children whom to date; they have forgotten
what it is like to be in love. -0.24 0.30 0.44
21. Jealousy usually varies directly with love; that the more in love you are,
the greater the tendency for you to become jealous. 0.12 0.18 0.47
22. Love is best described as an exciting thing rather than a calm thing. 0.20 --0.00 0.52
24. When you are in love, your judgment is usually not too clear. --0.09 -0.18 0.72
28. Day dreaming usually comes along with being in love. 0.20 --0.10 0.59

3. When you fall head-over-heels-in-love, it's sure to be the real thing. 0.22 0.21 0.19
4. Love isn't anything you can really study; it is too highly emotional to be
subject to scientific observation. -0.06 0.28 0.31
16. When you are separated from the love partner, the rest of the world seems
dull and unsatisfying. 0.28 0.25 0.33
29. When you are in love, you don't have to ask yourself a bunch of questions
about love; you will just know that you are in love. 0.26 0.29 0.28

7. Common interests are really unimportant; as long as each of you is truly in


love, you will adjust. ---0.10 0.63 0.08
8. It doesn't matter if you marry after you have known your partner for only a
short time as long as you know you are in love. 0.10 0.64 --0.08
9. As long as two people love each other, the religious differences they have really
do not matter. 0.07 0.68 --0.14
10. You can love someone even though you do not like any of that person's friends. --0.05 0.59 0.08
14. Regardless of other factors, if you truly love another person, that is enough to
marry that person. 0.32 0.49 --0.04
27. Differences in social class and religion are of small importance in selecting a
marriage partner as compared with love. 0.09 0.62 0.00

unidimensional scale, three correlated yet TABLE 3. FACTOR CORRELATION MATRIX


distinct factors, i.e., verifying the second
I II III
assumption. Subsequent principal compo-
nent analysis excluding items 3, 4, 16 and 29 I 1.00 0.21 0.28
resulted in highly similar factor structures II 1.00 0.24
and intercorrelations of the three factors. 1II 1.00
In the final analysis of this investigation, the unidimensionality of the scale and the
the matrix of intercorrelations among the relative strength of each of the factors in the
three factors served as the input for a principal component. The full model was
second-order principal component analysis. extracted overriding the eigenvalue criterion
The purpose of this analysis was to check on of 1.0 for truncating the model. The

766 JOURNAL OF MARRIAGE AND THE FAMILY November 1975


TABLE 4. SECOND ORDER FACTOR MATRIX TABLE 5. ITEM WEIGHTS

Factors Item Weight Item Weight


I II III 1 0.05 16*
1. 0.74 0.67 ---0.04 2 0.17 17 0.11
2. 0.75 ---0.29 0.59 3* 0.21
3. 0.75 ---0.3'7 0.55 4* .18 0.11
5 0.06.19 20 0.18
6 0.11 21 0.12
7 0.22 22 0.13
second-orderfactormatrixfor the full model 8 0.21 23 0.16
is found in Table 4. The results of this 9 0.22 24 0.27
analysisindicateda furtherstrengtheningof 10
11
0.18
0.25
25
26
0.13
0.17
the assumption that the scale was unidi- 12 0.14 27 0.16
mensional.The data also indicateFactorsII 13 0.16 28 0.18
and III are more intercorrelated with 14 0.13 29*
themselves than with Factor I (see full 15 0.24
model), but all three had equal strengthon *These items loaded on more than one factor. There-
the PrincipalComponent. fore, no weights should be assigned to these items in
using the instrument with the age and educational levels
CONCLUSIONSAND described.
RECOMMENDATIONS
Based upon the results of this investiga- and educational levels, stable weightings
tion, the authors concluded that the should be established through subsequent
assumptionthat the Knox-Sporakowski scale analysis on additional subjects. It is also
was unidimensionalwith several intercor- suggestedthat the fouritemswhichloadedon
relatedsubscaleswas confirmed.Since each more than one of the factors be further
of the factors was shown to have equal exploredand an evaluationmade as to their
strength on the Principal Component, the contributionto the overallscale.
process of scoring the Knox-Sporakowski
scaleshouldbe investigatedfurther.Previous
investigationsassumedequalweightingof the
29 items. The present data suggest that an REFERENCES
item weightingbased upon factor analysisbe
Kanin, E. J., K. R. Davidson, and S. R. Scheck
consideredsince there are differingnumbers 1970 "A research note on male-female differentials in
of items in each of the subscales.If this scale the experience of heterosexual love." The Jour-
wereto be used with a group similarin age nal of Sex Research 6 (February):64-72.
and educationallevel, the followingweight- Knox, D. H.
ings are recommended,based on the present 1970 "Conceptions of love at three developmental
analysis(see Table 5). stages." The Family Coordinator 19 (April):
151-157.
Using these weightingsthree factorscores, 1971 Discussion Guide to accompany A Love Atti-
one for each subscale,can be computed.The tude Inventory. Saluda, N.C.: Family Life
researchercould use either the three factor Publications.
scoresin describingthe subscalesindividually Knox, D. H. and M. J. Sporakowski
or sum the threefactorscoresand use this as 1968 "College students attitudes toward love." Jour-
the total score. However, before such a nal of Marriage and the Family 30 (November):
procedurewould be employedacross all age 638-642.

November1975 JOURNALOF MARRIAGEAND THE FAMILY 767