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Love and Friendship

4.18  ·  Rating details ·  142 ratings  ·  9 reviews
The author of the national bestseller The Closing of the American Mind offers a provocative indictment of the devaluing of love and intimacy in today's culture. Allan Bloom explores the language of love from the Bible to Freud, shedding penetrating light on the true nature of our most basic human connections. "(A) rich mine of a book".--New York Daily News.
Paperback, 592 pages
Published 1993 by Simon & Schuster
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George Jensen
Nov 23, 2010 is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
Based on the lives and writings of the ancient authors who influenced our modern times. You can get it as a used book from half.com.

Page 30: Bloom sums up his greater need to write on such a theme:
"But nowhere is this a more urgent task than in matters of eros, the first and best hope of human connectedness in a world where all connectedness has become problematic."

Page 29
"I suggest that we need a generation or two not of theory but of an attempt to discover the real phenomena of eros."

Page 33
"
...more
John Warner
Aug 27, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: romantics
Allan Bloom, with his characteristic combination of brilliance and bombast, laments the death of Eros in the modern world. The culprits are the familiar Straussian bugaboos: a reductionist and materialistic modern science, a relativistic moral climate, and a repulsive consumer culture combine to narrow contemporary man's erotic horizons, and leave him unable to come to grips with the hopes and fears of true intimacy.

Bloom seeks to restore his reader to erotic health by returning to philosophy an
...more
DoctorM
Nov 15, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy, essays
A series of essays on the meaning of Love and (to a lesser degree) Friendship, with Bloom arguing in favour of an Eros that leads lovers and friends to aspire to things higher than themselves and outside themselves. The bridging between individual essays doesn't always work, and the essay on Shakespeare could probably have been left out altogether. Nonetheless... Bloom's writing is elegant and gently provocative, and the essays on Austen and Plato's "Symposium" are wonderfully done. Bloom remind ...more
Brian
Jan 01, 2011 rated it really liked it
Bloom sure read a lot, and he sure put a lot of thought into what he read. This book is extremely dense, not with theory but with observation, context, cross-reference, personal interpretation, and projection. He has strong opinions and, maybe a little bit forced, finds support in the great books. I don't mark up my books much anymore, but this one is full of notes, underlines, paraphrase notes and questions, as well as points of reference to my own life and ideas. The long chapters on Rousseau ...more
Daniel
Aug 19, 2011 rated it really liked it
A fascinating look at the idea of Eros in the classic writings of Renee Descartes, William Shalespeare, and others. Beautiful book.
Russel Henderson
Apr 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed much of the book. Bloom's discussion of Rousseau shined, as he distilled from Emile Rousseau's appreciation of love and of eros as a completion of character. Likewise his survey of Stendhal, Flaubert, Austen and Tolstoy and their esteem of love and eros as described by Rousseau was superb, long enough to be insightful but measured enough to avoid tedium. His survey of Shakespeare, however, seemed forced. Certainly his erudition speaks for itself, but outside of Romeo and Juliet and par ...more
Max Lewy
Apr 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Makes erudition into an art form.
Bekah
Aug 30, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: philosophy
Confession/note: This ended up being another one of those books that I didn't read all the way; in fact, I ended up not reading much of it at all, other than the Introduction ("The Fall of Eros"), which just as fittingly could've been titled "A Reason for Books." Those parts elaborating on the good reasons to read literature I found quite compelling - enough so to send me back to the actual story books themselves, and to leave this hefty tome to other readers more scholarly and ambitious than my ...more
Emmanuel Wallart
Le meilleur livre que j'ai jamais lu. Une réflexion sur la place de la culture, de la littérature, de la philosophie,... bref des humanités dans notre société.
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Allan David Bloom was an American philosopher, essayist and academic. Bloom championed the idea of 'Great Books' education, as did his mentor Leo Strauss. Bloom became famous for his criticism of contemporary American higher education, with his views being expressed in his bestselling 1987 book, The Closing of the American Mind.

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“I suggest that we need a generation or two not of theory but of an attempt to discover the real phenomena of eros.” 2 likes
“I have no desire ... to preach a high-minded and merely edifying version of love” 2 likes
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