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The Pursuit of Love
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The Pursuit of Love is both delicious and cerebral. Its stars are Freud and Plato and so, delightfully, is as much about the mysterious agitations of sex as it is about the spirituality oflove. Singer is clearly the Stephen Hawking of the metaphysics and history of love. -- Alan Soble, author of The Structure of Love. Written by the foremost authority on the concept of love, this new work is destined to become a classic. -- W. Jackson Bate, University Professor, Harvard University. The Pursuit of Love is a unique achievement in that it demonstrates the relation between love, value, and meaning. It is overall a work of great wisdom that I found to be illuminating and personally enriching. -- Arnold H. Modell, M.D., Professor of Clinical Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School

About the Author

Irving Singer is professor of philosophy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His many books include the three-volume The Nature of Love, as well as Meaning in Life: The Creation of Value; Mozart and Beethoven: The Concept of Love in their Operas; The Goals of Human Sexuality; and Santayana's Aesthetics.

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``Love is freedom in the midst of conditionality,'' declares humanistic philosopher Singer in a wise, lucid, profound meditation on the essential role of love in our lives. Disputing both Freud and Sartre, who believed that all love is at bottom self-love, the MIT professor regards love as the principal means by which we seek affective relations to persons, things or ideals that have value and importance to us. Choosing illustrative examples from literature, opera, film and religion, Singer ( The Nature of Love ) plumbs the diverse manifestations of universal emotion--sexual love, love of self, parental and filial love, friendship, love of pets, of nature, of humanity and God. Although Singer eschews self-help advice, readers may derive practical guidance from his analysis of interdependent love relationships whereby each partner bestows meaning and value on the other without sacrificing autonomy. (May)

"Delicious and cerebral. Its stars are Freud and Plato and so, delightfully, is as much about the mysterious agitations of sex as it is about the spirituality of love. Singer is clearly the Stephen Hawking of the metaphysics and history of love."--Alan Soble, author of 'The Structure of Love' "'The Pursuit of Love' is both delicious and cerebral. Its stars are Freud and Plato and so, delightfully, is as much about the mysterious agitations of sex as it is about the spirituality oflove. Singer is clearly the Stephen Hawking of the metaphysics and history of love."--Alan Soble, author of 'The Structure of Love.' "Written by the foremost authority on the concept of love, this new work is destined to become a classic"--W. Jackson Bate, University Professor, Harvard University.

This book builds on Singer's three-volume The Nature of Love (LJ 5/1/66, LJ 11/15/ 84, LJ 11/15/87) and his Meaning in Life (Free Pr., 1991). In the latter, he held that meaning lies in the gratification and fulfillment we find in pursuing and attaining freely chosen goals. In this volume, he first distinguishes persons, things, and ideals and then, in terms of these concepts, discusses sexual love, parental and filial love, friendship, and love of one's nation, of humankind, of the cosmos, and of God. He analyzes different aspects of love, such as wanting to love vis-à-vis wanting to be loved; the libidinal, erotic, and romantic; love as merging with another person; and love as respecting another person's uniqueness and autonomy. Singer draws on a variety of disciplines to illustrate the concrete content of his carefully stated analyses. Highly recommended for large libraries and scholars in general.-Robert Hoffman, York Coll., CUNY

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