This book is an account of the psychology of romantic love in the context of a theory of emotions. The account develops out of studies in brain psychology and the extension to topics in process-philosophy, such as the nature of value and belief, and the central role of feeling in mental process. The approach is subjectivist, that is, from the internal standpoint, and in this respect it differs greatly from the externalist and objectivist trends in modern cognitive science and empiricist philosophy.
Love is the ultimate in value, so that a theory of love is also a theory of the nature of value and its relation to feeling, belief, and to drive and desire. The role of intention, reason, and appraisal is critiqued. The relation to other feelings, such as jealousy, envy, anger, loss and grief is discussed in terms of a general theory of emotion and the basis in a process account of the mind/brain state.
"In this book, Jason Brown does for emotion what he has already done brilliantly for thought and language, imagery and perception. Microgenetic theory, his unique unifying account of mind/brain process, is particularly well-suited to elucidate the edges of ineffability. In Love and Other Emotions Brown applies the theory to those realms where words and conscious thought so often fail us. Only poetry can bring us as close. With mature erudition, wisdom, and compelling logic, Brown shares his profound insights into what must surely be the most mysterious dimension of mind/brain function and human experience. Savour and reflect."
- Stephen E. Levick, MD, Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry , University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine
"The dialectic between the knowing subject and the known object – played out broadly as East vs West – is once again mined by its principal contemporary contributor in this compelling ontology of love. A brilliant psychologist/philosopher in the tradition of William James, Brown elaborates his foundational perspective (“The object of love is in the world, but love begins in the imagination”) with seminal distinctions (“feeling is not something an organism has, it is what an organism is”) and koan-like questions (“Is pain in a dream real pain?”), as he painstakingly navigates a safe passage through the Scylla and Charybdis of love: sentimentality and cynicism."
- Jonathan Bricklin, author of Sciousness
Table of Contents:
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
CHAPTER ONE: Falling in love
CHAPTER TWO: Theory of the emotions
CHAPTER THREE: Love and desire
CHAPTER FOUR: The reconciliation of the emotions: love, envy, and hate
CHAPTER FIVE: Desire for things
CHAPTER SIX: Love and pathology: a note on psychoanalytic theory
CHAPTER SEVEN: Pornography and perversion
CHAPTER EIGHT: Kindness and compassion
CHAPTER NINE: Belief and value
CHAPTER TEN: Philosophy of romantic love