Philosophia 45 (4):1765-1784 (2017)

Sara Protasi
University of Puget Sound
Can we love and envy the same person at the same time? There is an overwhelming, cross-cultural and cross-disciplinary, consensus that love and envy are deeply incompatible. In this paper, I challenge this consensus, and focus in particular on the normative thesis that true love should be void of envy proper. I first propose an indirect argument. Because love and envy thrive in the same psychological conditions, it is not unlikely to feel envy toward the beloved. If we want ideals that do not go against our psychological propensities, then we should not aim for a love that is wholly void of envy. I then propose a direct argument, in defense of two positive ideals. I argue that a certain kind of envy—emulative envy—can be beneficial to the loving relationship; in turn, a certain kind of love—wise love— which accepts the presence of envy, can be beneficial to our lives. Thus, that love and envy are so linked in our psychology is not something that we should merely tolerate, but wholeheartedly embrace.
Keywords love  envy  emulative envy  admiration  Aristotle  Rousseau
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DOI 10.1007/s11406-017-9863-7
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References found in this work BETA

The Metaphysics of Morals.Immanuel Kant - 1797/1996 - Cambridge University Press.
Love as Valuing a Relationship.Niko Kolodny - 2003 - Philosophical Review 112 (2):135-189.
Loving People for Who They Are (Even When They Don't Love You Back).Sara Protasi - 2016 - European Journal of Philosophy 24 (1):214-234.
Varieties of Envy.Sara Protasi - 2016 - Philosophical Psychology 29 (4):535-549.

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Citations of this work BETA

Happy Self-Surrender and Unhappy Self-Assertion: A Comparison Between Admiration and Emulative Envy.Sara Protasi - 2019 - In Alfred Archer & Andre Grahlé (eds.), The Moral Psychology of Admiration. New York: Rowman & Little International. pp. 45-60.
Envy's Non-Innocent Victims.Iskra Fileva - 2019 - Journal of Philosophy of Emotion 1 (1):1-22.

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