Isabella Biedenharn
February 14, 2016 at 02:05 PM EST

Aziz Ansari’s 2015 book Modern Love is markedly different than readers might have expected from the actor, writer, and comedian. Instead of a book of humorous essays, as many of Ansari’s peers have chosen, he paired up with sociologist Eric Klinenberg and pored over studies of relationship data and the way technology intersects with our search for love. Listen to Ansari read from the audiobook here.

To celebrate Valentine’s Day, Amazon has shared the top Kindle highlights from Modern Love:

  • “As a medium, it’s safe to say, texting facilitates flakiness and rudeness and many other personality traits that would not be expressed in a phone call or an in-person interaction.”
  • “Marriage was an economic institution in which you were given a partnership for life in terms of children and social status and succession and companionship. But now we want our partner to still give us all these things, but in addition I want you to be my best friend and my trusted confidant and my passionate lover to boot, and we live twice as long. So we come to one person, and we basically are asking them to give us what once an entire village used to provide”
  • “There’s something uniquely valuable in everyone, and we’ll be much happier and better off if we invest the time and energy it takes to find it.”
  • “Initially, we are attracted to people by their physical appearance and traits we can quickly recognize. But the things that really make us fall for someone are their deeper, more unique qualities, and usually those only come out during sustained interactions.”
  • “This third woman has created uncertainty, which social psychologists have found can lead to strong romantic attraction.”
  • “It made me wonder whether our ability and desire to interact with strangers is another muscle that risks atrophy in the smartphone world.”
  • “Why do we all say we prefer honesty but rarely give that courtesy to others?”
  • “But our research also convinced me that too many people spend way too much time doing the online part of online dating, not the dating part.”
  • “The couples that did the novel and exciting activities showed a significantly greater increase in relationship quality.”
  • “That’s the thing about the Internet: It doesn’t simply help us find the best thing out there; it has helped to produce the idea that there is a best thing and, if we search hard enough, we can find it. And in turn there are a whole bunch of inferior things that we’d be foolish to choose.”
  • “texting, unlike an in-person conversation, is not a forgiving medium for mistakes.”
  • “Through a series of experiments, Iyengar has demonstrated that an excess of options can lead to indecision and paralysis.”
  • “We each sit alone, staring at this black screen with a whole range of emotions. But in a strange way, we are all doing it together, and we should take solace in the fact that no one has a clue what’s going on.”
  • “Give me belonging, give me identity, give me continuity, but give me transcendence and mystery and awe all in one. Give me comfort, give me edge. Give me novelty, give me familiarity. Give me predictability, give me surprise. And we think it’s a given, and toys and lingerie are going to save us with that.”
  • “Schwartz’s research, and a considerable amount of scholarship from other social scientists too, shows that when we have more options, we are actually less satisfied and sometimes even have a harder time making a choice at all.”
  • “We want something that’s very passionate, or boiling, from the get-go. In the past, people weren’t looking for something boiling; they just needed some water. Once they found it and committed to a life together, they did their best to heat things up. Now, if things aren’t boiling, committing to marriage seems premature.”
  • “Finding someone today is probably more complicated and stressful than it was for previous generations—but you’re also more likely to end up with someone you are really excited about.”
  • “People will go as far as they have to to find a mate, but no farther.”
  • “The brain is the best algorithm,” Fisher argues. “There’s not a dating service on this planet that can do what the human brain can do in terms of finding the right person.”
  • “When you think about people more, this increases their presence in your mind, which ultimately can lead to feelings of attraction. Another idea from social psychology that goes into our texting games is the scarcity principle. Basically, we see something as more desirable when it is less available. When you are texting someone less frequently, you are, in effect, creating a scarcity of you and making yourself more attractive.”

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