Love in Spite of

Oxford Studies in Normative Ethics 6:241-262 (2016)
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Abstract

Consider two commonly cited requirements of love. The first is that we should love people for who they are. The second is that loving people should involve concern for their well-being. But what happens when an aspect of someone’s identity conflicts with her well-being? In examining this question, I develop an account of loving someone in spite of something. Although there are cases where loving in spite of is merited, I argue that we generally do wrong to love people in spite of who they are, even where it appears that some aspect of their identity is in tension with their well-being.

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Erich Hatala Matthes
Wellesley College

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