After a hiatus over the summer, I am back to recording and releasing new episodes of Sacred and Profane Love! For all of the podcast’s fans, thank you so much for your patience and encouragement over the long summer. I am planning to release new episodes from now until late May, as many as I can manage in light of an insanely busy writing, teaching, and speaking schedule. So, if you enjoy this humble podcast, be sure to subscribe and to share it with your friends.
In episode 16, “King Lear’s Vision,” I speak with Professor and poet Troy Jollimore about the connections between love and perception. In his recent book, Love’s Vision, Jollimore, drawing on Plato and Iris Murdoch, argues that true love consists in grasping the objective value of the beloved rather than the projection of it. This vision involves the bestowal of patient, loving, and imaginative attention on the objectively valuable qualities the beloved truly possesses. We explore this theme of love’s vision (or lack thereof) in Shakespeare’s darkest and wildest tragedy, King Lear. Reading Lear, we conclude, can help to open our eyes to the fact that we need to get out of our own way—i.e., to put aside our deep insecurities and vices—in order to see and love people for who they really are.
Works referenced in this Episode:
- Stanley Cavell, The Avoidance of Love: A Reading of King Lear. In Must We Mean What We Say? Cambridge University Press, 1976
- Troy Jollimore, Love’s Vision, Princeton University Press, 2011
- Iris Murdoch, “Literature and Philosophy: A Conversation with Bryan Magee” and “Vision and Choice in Morality,” in Existentialists and Mystics, Penguin Books, 1992.
- Plato, The Symposium, in Plato: Complete Works, edited by John M. Cooper, Hackett Publishing, 1997.
- William Shakespeare, King Lear, in The Arden Shakespeare, edited by R.A. Foakes, Thomas Nelson and Sons, Ltd., 1997.