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Durham University

The Department of Philosophy


Publication details for Dr Joe Saunders

Saunders, Joe (2018). Taking love seriously: McTaggart, absolute reality and chemistry. British Journal for the History of Philosophy 26(4): 719-737.

Author(s) from Durham


McTaggart takes love seriously. He rejects rival accounts that look to reduce love to pleasure, moral approbation or a fitting response to someone’s qualities. In addition, he thinks that love reveals something about the structure of the universe, and that in absolute reality, we could all love each other. In this paper, I follow McTaggart in his rejection of rival accounts of love, but distance myself from his own account of love in absolute reality. I argue that in claiming that we could all love each other, he fails to adequately account for an important part of the phenomena of love, namely chemistry.