The illusion of intimacy: A Levinasian critique of evolutionary psychology

While acknowledging the psychological experience of intimacy, evolutionary theory postulates proliferation as the underlying grounds for human relationships. Intimacy, according to evolutionary theory, is merely a psychological mechanism whereby sexual selection and parental investment are facilitated. Unfortunately, the assumption of an underlying evolutionary mechanism which governs human relationships including romantic love, jealousy, and parent–child bonds is fraught with problematic consequences. Unlike the evolutionary understanding of intimacy, the philosophy of E. Levinas offers an alternative conceptualization in which human relationships themselves constitute the grounds of intimacy. This alternative conceptualization escapes the problematic consequences of evolutionary theory. Intimacy from this grounding is inextricably tied to the infinite obligation we take on in relation to others. Implications of this conceptualization are explored. 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
Keywords E. Levinas's philosophy of vs evolutionary theory of human intimacy
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1037/h0091184
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Request removal from index
Revision history

Download options

Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 46,223
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library

References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles


Added to PP index

Total views
50 ( #176,725 of 2,285,692 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
4 ( #323,037 of 2,285,692 )

How can I increase my downloads?


My notes

Sign in to use this feature