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Article References

ORTIZ-MILLAN, Gustavo. Love and rationality: on some possible rational effects of love. Kriterion [online]. 2008, vol.4Selected edition, pp. 0-0. ISSN 0100-512X.

    1 Cf. DAMASIO, Antonio. Descartes' Error. Emotion, Reason, and the Human Brain. New York: Putnam, 1994; [ Links ]

    LEDOUX, Joseph. The Emotional Brain: The Mysterious Underpinnings of Emotional Life. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1996. [ Links ]

    2 ELSTER, Jon. Alchemies of the Mind. Rationality and the Emotions. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1999. p. 1. [ Links ]

    3 TENNOV, Dorothy. Love and Limerence, The Experience of Being in Love. 2nd ed. Lanham-New York: Scarborough House, 1999. p. 105. [ Links ]

    4 However, emotions are not exclusively constituted by cognitive states, they have specific characteristics that help us to distinguish them from beliefs, or from desires: qualitative feel, physiological arousal and expressions, valence on the pleasure-pain dimension, and characteristic action tendencies. See Alchemies of the Mind (pp. 246 ff) for a broader characterization of emotions in these terms; [ Links ]

    see also ELSTER. Strong Feelings. Emotion, Addiction, and Human Behavior. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 1999, p. 26 ff. [ Links ]

    5 However, D.W. Hamlyn has argued that love is compatible with any kind of beliefs, whether negative or positive. See: HAMLYN. The Phenomena of Love and Hate. In: Perception, Learning and the Self. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1983. [ Links ]

    Compare also with what Harry Frankfurt tells us: "Love may be brought about – in ways that are poorly understood – by a disparate variety of natural causes. It is entirely possible for a person to be caused to love something without noticing its value, or without being at all impressed by its value, or despite recognizing that there really is nothing especially valuable about it. It is even possible for a person to come to love something despite recognizing that its inherent nature is actually and utterly bad. That sort of love is doubtless a misfortune. Still, such things happen." (FRANKFURT, The Reasons of Love, Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2004, p. 38). [ Links ]

    6 Love, and emotions in general, are not subject to our desires in such a way that we can decide to be in an emotional state at will. "Love is like a fever that comes and goes quite independently of the will," says Stendhal in his book on love (Love. Trans. G. and S. Sale. London: Penguin, 1975, p. 51). [ Links ]

    For an extended discussion about the non-voluntary character of emotions, see ELSTER. Alchemies of the Mind, p. 306 ff. [ Links ]

    7 Tennov includes also the desires to be where the loved person is likely to be, the desire to talk about the loved person, and to be alone thinking about the beloved (op. cit., p. 121). Another characterization of the action tendencies of love is given by Gabriele Taylor: "If x loves y, then x wants to benefit and be with y, etc., and has these wants (or at least some of them), because he believes y has some determinate characteristics y in virtue of which he thinks it is worth while to benefit and be with y. He regards satisfaction of these wants as an end and not as a means towards some other end." (TAYLOR, Love. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 76 [1975-1976], p. 157. [ Links ]

    ) See also FRANKFURT. The Reasons of Love. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2004. [ Links ]

    8 BOCCACCIO. The Decameron, fifth day, first story. Trans. G. H. McWilliam. London: Penguin, 1972. [ Links ]

    9 FRANKFURT, Harry. Autonomy, Necessity, and Love. In: Necessity, Volition, and Love. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1999. p. 138. [ Links ]

    11 For more on the commitment model of accounting for rational action see FRANK, Robert Passions within Reason. The Strategic Role of Emotions. New York-London: Norton, 1988; [ Links ]

    see also GREENSPAN, Patricia. Emotional Strategies and Rationality. Ethics 110 (2000). [ Links ]

    12 DE SOUSA, Ronald. The Rationality of Emotions. In: RORTY, A. (Ed.). Explaining Emotions. Berkeley/LA: University of California Press, 1980. p. 138. [ Links ]

    An empirical rule used in research on communication is that 90% or more of an emotional message is non-verbal. For the non-intentional and non-verbal aspects of communication, see GOLEMAN, Daniel. Emotional Intelligence. New York: Bantam, 1995. chap. 7. [ Links ]

    14 OVID. The Art of Loving. Trans. A. S. Kline. Book II, 493-502. [ Links ]

    15 Jon ELSTER. Rationality, Emotions, and Social Norms. Synthese 98 (1994), p. 34. [ Links ]

    16 Probably the most basic form of involvement of emotions in the formation of knowledge is what people refer to as "passion of knowledge." Not only desire is involved in wanting to discover truth in scientific and other contexts, but also a form of literal passion for knowledge. I interpret this passion not as one, but as a myriad of emotions that are usually implicated in processes of formation of knowledge: hope for the discovery of truth, disgust at fallacious arguments, surprise when something happens that conflicts with prior theoretical expectations, etc. There is a diversity of emotions involved in cognitive processes: hope, fear, pride, admiration, joy, contempt, etc. All these emotions, along with several sorts of practical interests, play an important role as practical stimuli for the generation of knowledge. Israel Scheffler shows "how cognitive functioning employs and incorporates diverse emotional elements". (SCHEFFLER. In Praise of the Cognitive Emotions. In Praise of the Cognitive Emotions. New York/London: Routledge, 1991. p. 3). [ Links ]

    18 I found this quote somewhere on the internet, but I was unable to get the reference; however, similar ideas can be found in MURDOCH. The Sovereignty of Good. London: Routledge and Kegan Paul, 1970, [ Links ]

    and her Metaphysics as a Guide to Morals. New York: Penguin, 1993, esp. p. 16-17. [ Links ]

    See also NUSSBAUM, Martha. Love and Vision: Iris Murdoch on Eros and the Individual. In: ANTONACCIO, M.; SCHWEIKER, W. (Ed.). Iris Murdoch and the Search for Human Goodness. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1996. [ Links ]

    19 For more on the effects of love on self-knowledge and self-deception, see VAN FRAASSEN, Bas. The Peculiar Effects of Love and Desire. In: MCLAUGHLIN, B.; RORTY, A. (Ed.). Perspectives on Self-Deception. Berkeley/LA: University of California Press, 1988; [ Links ]

    and NUSSBAUM, Martha. Love's Knowledge. In: Love's Knowledge. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1990. esp. p. 274 ff. [ Links ]

    20 STENDHAL. Romans et Novelles. v. I. Paris: Gallimard, La Pléiade, 1952, p. 287, [ Links ]

    cited in ELSTER. Alchemies of the Mind, p. 129, [ Links ]

    22 There are ways in which our emotions in general, and love in particular, affect and even enhance our perception and our sensory life. This was known by Shakespeare, who tells us that love "adds a precious seeing to the eye: / A lover's eyes will gaze an eagle blind. / A lover's ear will hear the lowest sound." (Love's Labor's Lost act IV, scene 3) In his study on love, Francesco Alberoni also gives us the following description of how love enhances the ways we perceive and attend the world: "At these times, our entire physical and sensory life expands, becomes more intense; we pick up scents we didn't smell before, we perceive colors and lights we don't usually see. And our intellectual life expands too, so that we perceive relations that were previously obscure to us." (ALBERONI. Falling in Love. Trans. Lawrence Venuti. New York: Random House, 1983. p. 12. [ Links ]

    ) Compare to the experiences of the people interviewed by Tennov, op. cit., esp. p. 22. On how emotions may influence, and enhance, some aspects of our sensory life, see NIEDENTHAL, Paula M.; KITAYAMA, Shinobu (Ed.). The Heart's Eye. Emotional Influences in Perception and Attention. San Diego: Academic Press, 1994. [ Links ]

    23 JAMES, William. The Principles of Psychology. v. 1. New York: Henry Holt, 1890. p. 402-403. [ Links ]

    25 The Rationality of Emotion. Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press, 1987, p. 195. [ Links ]

    This position has been called the "search hypothesis of emotion", and it has been criticized by Dylan EVANS. The Search Hypothesis of Emotions. British Journal of the Philosophy of Science 53 (2002), [ Links ]

    26 EMERSON, Ralph Waldo. The Method of Nature. Delivered to the Society of the Adelphi, Waterville College, Me. [ Links ]