Beyond Friendship and Eros

Unrecognized Relationships between Men and Women

By John R. Scudder Jr. & Anne H. Bishop

Subjects: Human Relations
Series: SUNY series in the Philosophy of the Social Sciences
Paperback : 9780791451168, 140 pages, July 2001
Hardcover : 9780791451151, 140 pages, July 2001

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Table of contents


1. Why Another Interpretation of Love?

2. Abundant Being and Societal Tensions
Dialogical Love and Abundant Being
Societal Restraint and Misdirection
Struggling with Cultural Misdirection
Must Sex Inhibit Friendship?

3. Dialogical Love: Friends or Lovers
Lewis on the Transformation of Sex by Eros
May on How Sex Is Transformed by Eros
Lewis on Friendship and Eros
May on Friendship and Eros

4. Friendship between Men and Women
Simon on Intergender Friendship
Solomon on the Complementary Relationship of Friendship and Love
Plato and Aristotle on Friendship

5. Reaching for Dialogical Love
Lewis Surprised by Joy
Emerson's Rejection of Fuller's Invitation to Dialogical Love
Mill and Taylor's Reaching for Dialogical Love and Finding Feminism

6. I-Thou, Personal, and We-Relationships
The Personal and Categorical: Buber
The Social and the Personal: Macmurray
We-Relationships: Schutz

7. Why Dialogical Love?



Explores deep intimate personal relationships between men and women.


Culminating a twenty-year personal and scholarly quest, the authors explore the phenomenon of loving relationships (minus the sexual attraction) between men and women. They articulate these relationships as dialogical love in which partners respond to each other's presence personally rather than categorically as friend or lover. In a society where relationships of dialogical love are neither articulated and named nor recognized as acceptable ways of being, they are usually mistaken as affairs or regarded as "just" friend relationships. Since these relationships are spontaneous, free, and open, their meaning is disclosed through examples rather than by traditional definition. Throughout the book, the authors share their own personal relationship, similar relationships of those they interviewed, and relationships from literature and popular movies. Further illuminating interpretations of friendship and love are excerpts from C. S. Lewis, Rollo May, Caroline Simon, and Robert Solomon. Personal relationships are explicated by the work of Martin Buber, John Macmurray, and Alfred Schutz.

At Lynchburg College John R. Scudder Jr. is Professor of Philosophy Emeritus and Anne H. Bishop is Professor of Nursing Emerita. Together they have coauthored a number of books on nursing, including The Practical, Moral, and Personal Sense of Nursing: A Phenomenological Philosophy of Practice, also published by SUNY Press.


"I found this book unique in both its topic and style, its approach refreshing, the content provocative. The authors show what they have learned and how they have learned it. The intellectual importance of their work permeates the work's texture. Those with an interest in the topic of friendship would benefit from reading this book. Were I to see this book at a conference, it is just the sort of book I would purchase to read at the hotel or on the trip home. " — Frances Chaput Waksler, Wheelock College