ABC Radio National’s The Philosopher’s Zone just had an edition on how philosophers through the ages have made sense of that most intense of human emotions, love.
I particularly liked the discussion about the significance of love in the Frankenstein books and films:
I think what you’re raising there is this really interesting issue of how difference and sameness affects the love relation as well, and in the book I reflect on that quite a bit in different ways. But it’s the creature’s difference, his monstrosity that frightens people and undermines the possibility of love.
But I wonder also whether this sense that love works better between people who have a lot in common also undermines the possibility of the sort of adventure of discovering otherness, or discovering difference, and this is something that Nietzsche talks about and I bring Nietzsche together with the Frankenstein story because Nietzsche has really interesting little reflections on both love and friendship.
But what he seems to be indicating is that for him, a more genuine or authentic love would involve a search for the beyond, you know, beyond our own experience, so that we’d be challenged by the difference of the other. So this is something that I wanted to point out in that chapter as well.
Link to audio and transcript of TPZ on love.