Eros in a Narcissistic Culture

An Analysis Anchored in the Life-World

  • Ralph D. Ellis

Part of the Contributions to Phenomenology book series (CTPH, volume 22)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-ix
  2. Introduction

    1. Ralph D. Ellis
      Pages 1-34
  3. A Phenomenology of the Experience of Eros

    1. Ralph D. Ellis
      Pages 35-70
    2. Ralph D. Ellis
      Pages 71-96
    3. Ralph D. Ellis
      Pages 97-123
  4. Eros in Its Broader Existential and Cultural Context

    1. Ralph D. Ellis
      Pages 165-200
    2. Ralph D. Ellis
      Pages 219-257
  5. Conclusion

    1. Ralph D. Ellis
      Pages 258-274
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 275-286

About this book


The Urgency of Changing Our Thinking about Eros In Atlanta recently, a man broke into the apartment of his former girlfriend and brutally murdered both her and her new lover with an axe. When asked later whether he had considered the consequences of being apprehended and prosecuted, he responded that without his relationship to this particular woman his life had no meaning, and for this reason it made no difference what happened to him. All-too-facile explanations of such events can be devised in terms of neurological imbalances or improper child-rearing practices. But why are suicide, the murder of spouses and lovers, and other crimes of passion so much more prevalent in advanced, urban-industrial cultures, and especially in those where people's value is assessed in terms of socio-economic success and failure? And why do the associated psychic disturbances express themselves so prominently in terms of disruption of attitudes toward love relationships? It cannot be a mere coincidence that the most heinous crimes are crimes of love. I shall suggest here that the most direct way to understand the most prevalent dysfunctions of the modern psyche is to understand the dysfunctions of eros. The reason for this is twofold. First, eros is central tQl the project of defining meaning for conscious beings - for reasons more fundamentally philosophical than anything envisioned by Freud or other drive-reduction theorists.


Nation concept event issue phenomenology

Authors and affiliations

  • Ralph D. Ellis
    • 1
  1. 1.Clark Atlanta UniversityAtlantaUSA

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 1996
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-94-010-7243-4
  • Online ISBN 978-94-009-1661-6
  • Series Print ISSN 0923-9545
  • Buy this book on publisher's site