Kyla Ebels-Duggan – Love and Agency
Date: 10 mars 2017
Location: Room 422 (2910 Boul. Édouard-Montpetit, métro Université de Montréal)
Event website: http://grin.normativity.ca/2016/07/ateliers-du-grin-2016-17/
Kyla Ebels-Duggan (Northwestern University) – Love and Agency
Abstract: Our ordinary talk reflects a deep tension in the way that we think about love. On the one hand, we regard love, as not just an expression of our agency, but an especially important one. Yet, on the other hand, we also think of love as something that happens to us, in the face of which we are passive and can be powerless. While it’s hard to see how to hold these two ways of thinking of love together, in this paper I argue that we must find some way of doing so. Abandoning the idea that love is something that we do, not just something that we experience, would require significant revision in our practical thinking. But familiar notions of agency sort love as passive rather than active. I conclude that questions about the relationship of our agency to what we love are not superficial, but stem from deep tensions about the relationship between love and reasons. A resolution to these difficulties would provide important insight not only into the character of love, but also the nature of agency, and its relationship to values, reasoning and reasons.