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By John R. Scudder, Anne H. Bishop

Explores deep intimate own relationships among women and men.

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Extra resources for Beyond Friendship and Eros: Unrecognized Relationships Between Men and Women (S U N Y Series in the Philosophy of the Social Sciences)

Example text

She delights in the presence of both of them, enjoys them ecstatically, lives in a common we-world with them, shares their joys and sorrows, and personally appreciates each of them. These are qualities of dialogical love relationships. Dialogical love is recognized by a qualitative way of being together, not by whether it includes or excludes sex or romantic love. Julieanne obviously loves both men in the same dialogical personal way. In the case of Michael, his acceptance of the primacy of romantic love prevented him from recognizing their personal love, but in the case of George, it did not.

In our society, lover relationships are believed to be the only ones in which men and women can have deep enduring relationships. It is our belief that the deepest love relationships are not sexual or romantic but personal. This deeper love is unrecognized in our culture and therefore often confused with romantic love. Deep personal relationships between the sexes are difficult to cultivate in our society because relationships between the sexes are governed by an updated version of the world in which we grew up.

I think that abuse, in part, comes from thinking of the DIALOGICAL LOVE: FRIENDS OR LOVERS 41 body as something you have. If a body is something you have, it is something you can use. Lewis claims that males use their bodies to dominate females and females use their bodies to be submissive (Lewis 1960, 145). But if a body is not something you have and your sexuality is something you are, then it is possible to engage in personal sexual relationships. You can share your being with another bodily, and they can respond bodily.

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