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Episteme

Abstract

In this paper, the author argues for how we might construct an ontology-based theory of being-in love compatible with Sartre’s Being and Nothingness. Since we want to avoid Sartre’s pessimistic conclusions, such a theory would need to include a structure of intersubjectivity, which, though against Sartre’s stated likings, is needed to improve Sartre’s account of love. First of all, Sartre’s ontology and concept of bad faith make the idea of being in love impossible. The insistence on being-for-others is the disease in Sartre’s system, here—the being-with must be allowed its full capacity. To this end, we must first distinguish between “thematic expression of love” and “concrete experience of love”—having either one at any given time would constitute being-in love. The author then elaborates on the new philosophy at play. The author works through the various considerations that lead to the full analysis of the intersubjective love project, which is founded on Sartre’s ontology; disallows Sartre’s worry of bad faith; and presupposes the lovers’ factual separateness.

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