Do We Love For Reasons?

Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 102 (1):106-126 (2021)
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Do we love for reasons? It can seem as if we do, since most cases of non‐familial love seem *selective*: coming to love a non‐family‐member often begins with our being drawn to them for what they are like. I argue, however, that we can vindicate love's selectivity, even if we maintain that there are no reasons for love; indeed, that gives us a simpler, and hence better, explanation of love's selectivity. We don't, in short, come to love *for* reasons. That which seemed like evidence for thinking that there are reasons for love, then, turns out to militate against that view: how can these purported reasons be reasons for love, if they don't engender (in virtue of rationalizing) it?

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Yongming Han
Brown University

Citations of this work

The aesthetics of coming to know someone.James H. P. Lewis - 2023 - Philosophical Studies (5-6):1-16.
Love.Bennett W. Helm - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
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Irrational Love: Taking Romeo and Juliet Seriously.Natasha McKeever & Joe Saunders - 2022 - International Journal of Philosophical Studies 30 (3):254-275.

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References found in this work

Reasons and Persons.Derek Parfit - 1984 - Oxford, GB: Oxford University Press.
On What Matters: Two-Volume Set.Derek Parfit - 2011 - New York: Oxford University Press.
The moral problem.Michael Smith - 1994 - Cambridge, Mass., USA: Blackwell.
Utilitarianism.J. S. Mill - 1861 - Oxford University Press UK. Edited by Roger Crisp.
Reasons and Persons.Joseph Margolis - 1986 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 47 (2):311-327.

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