A Personal Love of the Good

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1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

In order to articulate an account of erotic love that does not attempt to transcend its personal features, Robert Solomon and Martha Nussbaum lean on the speeches by Aristophanes and Alcibiades in Plato’s Symposium. This leads them to downplay the sense in which love is not only for another person, but also for the good. Drawing on a distinction between relative and absolute senses of speaking about the good, I mediate between two features of love that at first may seem irreconcilable. The first is the sense in which love is deeply personal in character. The second is the sense in which we in love come to articulate ethical demands. With the help of the Diotimian ascent of love that Socrates presents in his speech, I submit that these two can come together in the realization that our personally conditioned responses in love are transformed to accommodate demands that carry an unconditional meaning.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)977–994
JournalPhilosophia
Volume47
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • love

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