Eros and Anxiety

Synthese 202 (200):1-20 (2023)
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L.A. Paul argues that “transformative experiences” challenge our hopes to live up to an ideal that she believes is upheld within western, wealthy cultures. If these experiences reveal information to us about the world and ourselves that is in principle unavailable to us before we undergo them, it seems that there is no hope for us to be rational, authentic and autonomous masters of our own lives. Supposing that Paul is right about this, how concerned should we be? Here, I challenge the ideal of "rational mastery" that guides Paul’s project, and which must be granted in order to motivate the philosophical challenge purportedly generated by experiences that drastically change who we are and what we know.

Author's Profile

Vida Yao
University of California, Los Angeles


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