Philosophical Service FinalTopic: Project- Polyamory and MonogamyFor this assignment, you will perform some “philosophical community service.” The service you will provide is demonstrating to some members of your community how to think critically about moral issues using the logical methods we’ve practiced in this class. So, you will model thinking in systematic ways about moral issues, engage some arguments from your audience, and help them evaluate these arguments.Here’s what to do:1. You may do this project on your own, or you may do it in a group of 2-3 students. If you do a group, each member must submit the project on their own: not doing this will result in a zero for any student who doesn’t submit the assignment.2. Pick a “practical” or “applied” topic from the syllabus (not an ethical theory) that we have covered in this course or develop your own with the approval of the instructor. Here are some of the topics we’ve covered: the treatment of disabled newborns, euthanasia and assisted suicide, female genital mutilation, male circumcision, homosexuality, racism in dating, racial preferences in romantic relationships, polyamory and monogamy, abortion, absolute poverty, reparations for slavery, racism, sexism, and speciesism, vegetarianism and the treatment of animals, punishment and the death penalty, drug use and the criminalization of drug use, the ethics of grades and extra credit, and more.3. Develop at least 5 arguments in logically valid form on this topic. You will want to review the video on syllogisms, to remind yourself how to make arguments in valid form: See Video- https://youtu.be/xw8DJQRYWXgRecall that the pattern here is:A is an X.All things that are X are Y.Therefore, A is a Y.OrA is an X.If something is an X, then that something is a Y.Therefore, A is a Y4. Find an audience of at least 3 people, not from this class. This can be three people from “real, in-person” life, or people online, say via Zoom or Skype or the like.5. Present your arguments to this audience. Given them an introduction to what you will do in your presentation. Explain to them what you will do and how you will do it: tell them what arguments are and what makes arguments good and bad and how you can tell (explain – with examples – the concepts of arguments logical validity, soundness, counterexamples). State and explain your five arguments in logically valid form and fully evaluate them as sound or not: explain whether each and every premise is true or false and why. Do not present any “question-begging” arguments, where the premises assume the conclusion; if your audience offers any question-begging arguments, you will need to identify those as question-begging and explain why they are inadequate.6. Get at least 3 (ideally, at least 5) new arguments, or premises, on the same topic from the audience.7. With the audience, formulate these arguments in logically valid form and determine whether they are sound or not: address each and every premise.8. Formulate any conclusions from your discussion and conclude your discussion, reviewing what you did.9. Write up a report on what happened, using the headings below: cut and paste the text below into a document to use. Your final report here should be organized, clear, and easy to read. You should upload it here to submit it.Philosophical “Community Service” Project:Report Form1.       You’re Class:2.       Your name. You may do this on your own or as a small group of 2-3 (see above). If you do a group, please include your group members’ names: (note: each member must submit this report: failing to do this will result in a zero for the assignment for the student who doesn’t submit the report, if he is a member of a group).3.       Your topic:   4.       Summarize the introduction to what you will do in your presentation. You will need to explain to the audience what you will do and how you will do it: you need to explain the methods that you will use to identify and evaluate moral arguments.5.       Present at least 5 arguments on that topic, stated in logically valid form.6.       Evaluate those 5 arguments as sound or not. Fully explain why they are sound or not: by explaining whether each and every premise is true or false (Note: merely stating whether an argument is sound or not does not explain why it is sound or not: explanations of whether each and every premise is true or false and why is needed).7.       Your audience members’ names:8.       Your audience’s reactions to the arguments that you presented and your evaluation of them:9.       The 3-5 arguments from the audience:10.   These arguments stated in logically valid form:11.   Your, and the audience’s, evaluations of these arguments as sound or not:12.   Your conclusions and summary of this activity that you presented to the audience.13.   Your individual or group’s reflections on this experience: what went well? What was interesting? What was surprising? What was challenging? How was this experience, overall?This assignment results in students going all sorts of interesting places (bookstores, coffee shops, restaurants, etc.) to talk with interesting people (sometimes people they know, other times new people), to discuss all sorts of interesting topics. Typically, students appreciate the opportunity to “be the teacher” and confirm that they really learned something in the class, and they find their audiences appreciate learning some new, systematic ways of thinking about moral issues.Here’s a recent final reflection from a student (used with permission) that is representative of a common reflection on the experience:The whole activity went well. I believe that I explained moral arguments very well because the audience was able to understand the basic concepts of moral arguments. It was interesting to hear what arguments the audience would make. I thought it would be challenging for the audience to get the hang of making moral arguments, but it wasn’t hard for them at all. This was a great experience, I really enjoyed it and the audience enjoyed it as well. I really enjoyed being able to show what I have learned in this class. I also like the fact that I was able to benefit others with my knowledge.Note: it is vital that you follow the directions carefully for this assignment. Not following the directions may result in a failing grade for the assignment.
Philosophical Service Final Topic: Project- Polyamory and Monogamy For this assignment, you will perform some “philosophical community service.” The service you will provide is demonstrating to some
PHILOSOPHICAL ETHICS – Almost Everything You Need to Know! www.MakingMo ralProgress.com Two very important questions for thinking about moral issues: 1. WHY THINK THAT?  ‘That’ = the conclusion; ‘Why’ = the premise(s) 2. WHAT DO YOU MEAN?  Need to understand the claims so we can try to figure out whether they are true or false.  Need to be precise : Is someone claiming whatever of  Some ? All ? All possible ? Which ?  Get clear on the meaning s of words. Lots of ethical debat es involve words that need to be carefully defined. Basic concepts about arguments: 1. Argument = a  conclusion  supported by a  premise  or  premises ; premise (s) that support a  conclusion. Moral conclusions: Doing X is morally wrong . (= imper missible; we are obligated to not do). Doing X is morally permissible . (‘Right ’ can mean this, so avoid the word). (Permissible = not wrong ) Doing X is morally obligatory . (‘Right ’ can mean this, so avoid the word). (Obligatory = wrong to not do ). We can be, and should be, precise: doing X in these specific circumstances is wrong, etc. 2. “Logically valid argument ” = an a rgument where, if the premises are true, then the conclusion is true; also the complete or full structure of the reasoning is stated. E.g.: Socrates is a man. Therefore, Socrates is mortal.  Socrates is a man. All men are mortal. Therefore, Socrates is mortal. or Socrates is a man. If someone is a man, then that someone is mortal.  Therefore, Socrates is mortal. That patte rn of logically valid argument is called a  simple syllogism:  A is an X; all X’s are Y ’s; therefore , A is a Y.    Other patterns:   mod us ponens :  If P, then Q; P; therefore Q. Or: If  this  is true, then  that  is true;  this  is true; therefore , that  is true.   modus tollens : If P, then Q; not Q; therefore , not P. Or: If  this  is true, then  that  is true;  that  is not true; therefore , this  is not true. “If a false claim logically follows from P, then P is false. ” E.g., “If only blue -eyed people had the right to life, then ___. But ___, so it’s not true that only blue eyed people have the right to life.” 3.  Sound arguments  = logically v alid argument with true premises and, thus, true conclusions.   In moral arguments, there are often  factual or scientific premises . Are they true or not? Need scientific evidence.  In moral arguments there are also often general  moral principles,  premises that assert that, e.g.,  All actions like X are wrong , If an action has X & Y features, then that action is obligatory , etc.  Evaluate moral principles by (1) seeing if they are morally explanatory and (2) if there are  counterexamples  to them, that is, cases or examples that would show the general premise to be false.  Further concepts: A type of action being  prima facie  wrong , prima facie  permissible,  prima facie  obligatory.  prima facie  wrong  = a type of action that is typically wrong, or wrong unles s extreme circumstances justify doing it.  Why mention this? Some say, “There are exceptions to every rule. ” This might not be true, but even if is, we can identify types of actions that are at least nearly always wrong, nearly always permissible, nearly a lways obligatory.  Begging the question . = assuming a conclusion in a premise, perhaps by restating the conclusion in a premise but in slightly different words; giving a premise that someone would accept only if he or she already accepted the conclusion , thus assuming the conclusion.  Necessary , Sufficient and Necessary & Sufficient Conditions – see other handouts ; Google. Some Other Concerns: 1. The law and ethics.  Response:  Law and morality are different: immoral actions are sometimes legal or not criminal (e.g. ______); the law can  require  immoral actions (e.g. ______); morally permissible actions c an be, a nd sometimes are, illegal (e.g._ ) 2. Religion and ethics:  Many responses  . . ;  least combative response : if a religion, church, religious figure, religious text, God, etc. has claim about what ’s moral, either that source has  reasons  in support of that view or not. If not, i.e., no reasons, th en the view is arbitrary (it ’s “random ”). If there are reasons, then anyone should be able to evaluat e those reasons. Religion needn ’t be an obstacle to moral reasoning, since we can share and evaluate our reasons. 3. “That’s what we do, it ’s our tradition; it ’s what they do, it ’s their practice; it ’s ‘right to them ’ or ‘wrong to them ’; that’s ‘right to us ’ or ‘wrong to us ’. Response:  individuals and communities can be mistaken; they can be wrong. We want to make progress. 4. “I or we like doing that. It ’s pleasu rable; we enjoy doing that. ” Response : morality is more than just you and your pleasures, especially when someone else is or might be harmed. 
Philosophical Service Final Topic: Project- Polyamory and Monogamy For this assignment, you will perform some “philosophical community service.” The service you will provide is demonstrating to some
7/13/2021 A philosopher makes the case for polyamory – Vox https://www.vox.com/conversations/2017/2/23/14684236/monogamy-valentines-day-polyamory-marriage-love 1/11 ” It ’s u nhealt hy to f o rc e p eo p le in to a ch oic e t h at m ight n o t f it t h em .” B y S ean I llin g @ se an illin g se an .illin [email protected] vo x.c o m U pdate d Fe b 1 6 , 2 0 18 , 6 :4 7a m E S T A p hilo so p her m ake s th e c ase f o r p oly a m ory There i s s till a t a b oo a ro und o p en r e la tio nsh ip s i n o ur c u lt u re . P eo p le w ho o p enly p ra c tic e n o nm ono ga m y, i f n o t q uit e o stra c iz e d , a re c e rt a in ly s te re o ty p ed . This i s p art o f t h e r e aso n C arrie J e nkin s, a p hilo so p hy p ro fe sso r a t t h e U niv e rs it y o f B rit is h C olu m bia , h as b eco m e a r e lu cta n t d efe nd er o f p oly a m ory . J e nkin s, w ho se n ew b ook i s c alle d W hat L ove I s : An d W hat It C ould B e , s a ys o ur c o nce p t o f r o m an tic l o ve i s t o o narro w , t o o e xc lu siv e , t o o “ m ono no rm ativ e .”Shutte rs to ck 7/13/2021 A philosopher makes the case for polyamory – Vox https://www.vox.com/conversations/2017/2/23/14684236/monogamy-valentines-day-polyamory-marriage-love 2/11 “ T he f a c t t h at t h e s o cia l c o nstru ct e xc lu d es m e i s n o t a r e aso n t o f e el l ik e I ‘m d oin g so m eth in g w ro ng,” s h e t o ld m e. “ It ‘s a r e aso n t o c h alle nge t h e s o cia l c o nstru ct.” T he s im ple st d efin it io n o f p oly a m ory i s p art ic ip atio n i n m ult ip le l o vin g r e la tio nsh ip s a t t h e sa m e t im e. F o r t h e p ast f o ur y e ars , J e nkin s h as h ad b oth a l o vin g husb an d a n d a l o vin g b oyfr ie nd , a n d e ve ry o ne k n o w s a b out e ve ry o ne e ls e . T here a re n o s e cre ts , n o d ece p tio ns, n o j e alo usie s. B ut, s o cia l s tig m as b ein g w hat t h ey a re , J e nkin s s p ent s e ve ra l y e ars h id in g th is p art o f h er l if e . E ve n i n t h e l ib era l e ncla ve o f a c ad em ia , m ono no rm ativ it y p ers is ts . S o sh e d ecid ed t o w rit e t h is b ook a n d , a s s h e p ut i t , “ s ta rt a c o nve rs a tio n.” I n t h is i n te rv ie w , I t a lk t o J e nkin s a b out w hat s h e h o p es t o a c co m plis h w it h t h is b ook. I a sk h er w hat a p ro p erly e xp an siv e c o nce p t o f l o ve l o oks l ik e , w hy i t ’s a m is ta ke t o r e d uce fo rm s o f l o ve t o s e x, a n d w hat o ur c u lt u re g e ts r igh t — a n d w ro ng — a b out m ono ga m y. S ean I llin g W hat d is tin gu is h es p oly a m ory f r o m o th er f o rm s o f n o nm ono ga m y? C arrie J e n k in s T his i s o ne o f t h o se d if fic u lt d efin it io nal q uestio ns. I c an o nly t e ll y o u w hat i t m ean s t o m e. I t h in k o f i t i n t e rm s o f i t s e ty m olo gy , w hic h m ean s m ult ip le l o ve s. I u se i t f o r m ys e lf b ecau se I’m i n m ore t h an o ne l o vin g re la tio nsh ip . S o n o nm ono ga m y m ore g e nera lly c o uld i n clu d e p eo p le w ho a re i n o ne l o vin g re la tio nsh ip b ut t h ey a ls o h ave o th er s e xu al p art n ers o uts id e of t h at r e la tio nsh ip — p eo p le w ho a re s w in ge rs , f o r e xa m ple . S ean I llin g H ow l o ng have y o u p ra c tic e d p oly a m ory ? C arrie J e n k in s I’v e b een o p enly n o nm ono ga m ous f o r f iv e o r s ix y e ars . O ve r t h e l a st f o ur y e ars , I ’ v e b een in vo lv e d i n s e ve ra l l o ng-te rm s im ult a n eo us r e la tio nsh ip s, a n d s o t h e t e rm p oly a m ory h as fe lt m ore a p pro p ria te . S ean I llin g D o y o u o b je ct t o m ono ga m y o n m ora l o r p hilo so p hic al g ro und s? O r d o y o u j u st p re fe r p oly a m ory ? C arrie J e n k in s 7/13/2021 A philosopher makes the case for polyamory – Vox https://www.vox.com/conversations/2017/2/23/14684236/monogamy-valentines-day-polyamory-marriage-love 3/11 I d on’t o b je ct t o m ono ga m y a t a ll. I j u st d on’t c h o ose i t f o r m ys e lf . I t h in k m ono ga m y i s t h e b est f it f o r a l o t o f p eo p le . I ‘m j u st n o t o ne o f t h o se p eo p le . S ean I llin g S o y o u’r e n o t a n ti- m ono ga m y; y o u’r e j u st p ro -p oly a m ory . C arrie J e n k in s Y e s, e xa c tly . I ‘m n o t a n ti- a n yth in g. I ‘m a rg u in g th at e ve ry b od y s h o uld b e a b le t o d o w hate ve r t h ey w an t. T he p ro b le m i s I d on’t f e el l ik e I ’ m a llo w ed t h is f r e ed om , a t l e ast n o t i n a s o cia lly a c ce p ta b le w ay. S ean I llin g I t a ke i t t h at’s w hy y o u w ro te t h is b ook, b ecau se y o u f e lt l ik e y o u h ad t o c o nce al t h is p art o f yo ur l if e ? C arrie J e n k in s A ctu ally , t h e b ook h as a f a ir ly l a te -s ta ge o p enness. W e w ere a lr e ad y f a ir ly o p en b efo re t h e b ook, b ut w e f e lt t h e n eed t o t a lk a b out t h is , p art ly b ecau se w e f e lt l ik e w e w ould b e ju d ge d i f w e w ere s e en w it h a n o th er p art n er t h at w asn ’t o ur w if e o r h usb an d . W e t h o ugh t p eo p le m igh t a ss u m e w e’r e c h eatin g, a n d w e a ls o t h o ugh t t h at e ve n i f p eo p le k n ew w e w ere n’t c h eatin g, t h ey m igh t h ave a l o t o f s te re o ty p es i n t h eir m in d a b out w hat i t m ean s t o b e i n a n o p en r e la tio nsh ip , a n d s o w e w an te d t o a d dre ss s o m e o f t h e o b je ctio ns w e’v e h eard . W e a ls o w an te d t o m od el s o m eth in g dif fe re nt, s o m eth in g th at l o oke d l e ss l ik e s o m e o f t h e ste re o ty p es, a n d s o m eth in g th at, a s f a r a s w e c o uld t e ll, w as a h ealt h y a lt e rn ativ e . [A ut ho r’s n o te : J e nkin s an d h e r h usb an d p ub lis h ed a n o p en l e tte r in t h e j o ur nal Off T o p ic r e sp ond in g t o t h e m ost c o m mon o b je ctio ns t o p oly am ory .] 7/13/2021 A philosopher makes the case for polyamory – Vox https://www.vox.com/conversations/2017/2/23/14684236/monogamy-valentines-day-polyamory-marriage-love 4/11 S ean I llin g A c o m mon a ss u m ptio n a b out r o m an tic l o ve t h at i t c an o nly e xis t b etw een t w o p art n ers a t o ne t im e. W hat i s f la w ed a b out t h at a ss u m ptio n? 7/13/2021 A philosopher makes the case for polyamory – Vox https://www.vox.com/conversations/2017/2/23/14684236/monogamy-valentines-day-polyamory-marriage-love 5/11 C arrie J e n k in s I a m r e ally i n te re ste d a n d p hilo so p hic ally i n ve ste d i n t h at c la im f o r o bvio us r e aso ns. I h ave a t h eo ry a b out w hat r o m an tic l o ve i s : I t ‘s p art b io lo gi cal, s o t h e b ra in c h em is try a n d eve ry th in g th at’s e vo lv e d i n u s a s a s p ecie s, a n d p art s o cia lly c o nstru cte d . R om an tic l o ve a s a s o cia l c o nstru ct, i n t h is t im e a n d p la c e , s till i n clu d es a s tro ng m ono ga m y c o m ponent. S o i f y o u’r e t h in kin g ab out t h e s o cia l s id e o f r o m an tic l o ve , w hat i t i s r ig h t n o w , t h en t h ere is a s e nse i n w hic h w hat I d o, f o r e xa m ple , i s j u st a b ad f it f o r t h at s o cia l c o nstru ct. T he p eo p le w ho s a y I ‘m n o t r e ally i n l o ve b ecau se I h ave t h at r e la tio nsh ip w it h t w o p eo p le a re h alf w ay r igh t, i n t h e s e nse t h at t h ey a re a c c u ra te ly s a yin g th e s o cia l c o nstru ct e xc lu d es m e. B io lo gi cally s p eak in g, w hate ve r i s g o in g on i n m y b ra in i s t h e t h in g th at r o m an tic l o ve i s s u p pose d t o l o ok l ik e , o r w hat i t l o oks i n o th er p eo p le w ho a re i n m ono ga m ous l o ve . T he fa c t t h at t h e s o cia l c o nstru ct e xc lu d es m e i s n o t a r e aso n — a n d t h is h as b een m y m ost h ard -w on p ie ce o f w is d om — t o f e el l ik e I ‘m d oin g so m eth in g w ro ng. I t ‘s a r e aso n t o c h alle nge t h e s o cia l c o nstru ct. S ean I llin g S o y o u’r e l o okin g to p re se rv e t h is d ic h o to m y o f l o ve a s b oth a s o cia l c o nstru ct a n d a b io lo gi cal i m puls e ? C arrie J e n k in s R om an tic l o ve h as i t s b io lo gi cal s id e, a n d i t h as i t s s o cia lly c o nstru cte d s id e. W hat I ‘m r e ally in te re ste d i n i s h o w c an w e i m pro ve i t a n d i n clu d e b oth h alv e s i n t h e p ic tu re . B ut f o r t h e so cia lly c o nstru cte d s id e, w e h ave a l o t o f c o ntro l o ve r t h at, n o t a n y o ne i n d iv id ual b ut co lle ctiv e ly . B ecau se a s o cia l c o nstru ct m ean s w e c o lle ctiv e ly a re c o nstru ctin g a n d m ain ta in in g [it ] , a n d i t d oes c h an ge o ve r t im e. Y o u c an s e e t h is , f o r e xa m ple , i n t h e m ove to w ard g re ate r i n clu sio n o f s a m e-s e x l o ve i n m y l if e tim e. A nd i n t h e g e nera tio n b efo re t h at, a s im ila r m ove t o w ard t h e i n clu sio n o f i n te rra c ia l l o ve . S o t h is s o cia l c o nstru ct t h at u se d t o e xc lu d e c e rt a in k in d s o f r e la tio nsh ip s h as c o m e t o in clu d e t h em , s o i t ‘s p oss ib le f o r u s t o c h an ge w hat i s o r i s n ‘t i n clu d ed u nd er t h at h ead in g. K no w in g th at w e h ave a s o cia lly c o nstru cte d p heno m eno n o n o ur h an d s i s w hat e m pow ers u s t o c h alle nge a n d c h an ge i t . S ean I llin g 7/13/2021 A philosopher makes the case for polyamory – Vox https://www.vox.com/conversations/2017/2/23/14684236/monogamy-valentines-day-polyamory-marriage-love 6/11 I f w e’r e t a lk in g ab out a s o cia l c o nstru ct, i t m ake s n o s e nse t o t a lk a b out w hat’s “ n atu ra l,” b ut t h ere ’s c e rt a in ly a s c h o ol o f t h o ugh t t h at s a ys m ono ga m y i s p syc h o lo gic ally u nhealt h y b ecau se i t f o rc e s u s t o r e p re ss b io lo gi cal d riv e s. C arrie J e n k in s It ’s u nhealt h y t o f o rc e p eo p le i n to a c h o ic e t h at m igh t n o t f it t h em . Y o u c an t h in k o f t h e m od el o f c o m puls o ry h ete ro se xu alit y , i n w hic h t h e o nly k in d o f s e x t h at’s p erm is s ib le o r th e o nly s e x o ne c an c o nte m pla te i s s tra igh t s e x. W hat’s u nhealt h y t h ere i s s o m e p eo p le a re g o in g to b e f o rc e d t o w ard s o m eth in g th at d oesn ‘t s u it t h em , d oesn ‘t f it t h em , a n d fo rc e d a w ay f r o m w hat w ould a c tu ally b e t h e n atu ra l, h ealt h y l if e f o r t h em . I t ‘s n o t t h at stra igh t s e x i s n ‘t h ealt h y. I t ‘s t h at f o rc in g eve ry o ne i n to o ne b ox i s u nhealt h y. I t h in k t h e s a m e a b out m ono ga m y. S ean I llin g W hat’s y o ur r e sp onse t o p eo p le w ho s a y p oly a m ory i s r e ally a b out s e x, n o t l o ve ? C arrie J e n k in s I c an o nly d esc rib e m y e xp erie nce a n d t h e e xp erie nce s o f o th er p eo p le I k n o w . I a m i n l o ng- te rm , l o vin g re la tio nsh ip s w it h t w o p eo p le , a n d t h ere ‘s s o m uch t o t h ese r e la tio nsh ip s t h at I c an h ard ly b egi n t o d esc rib e t h e k in d s o f v a lu e t h ey b rin g to m y l if e . S ean I llin g C an y o u gi ve m e a n e xa m ple o f w hat y o u m ean h ere ? C arrie J e n k in s S ure . W hen I w as w rit in g m y b ook i n i t s e arly s o rt o f m an usc rip t s ta ge s, I w as h esit a n t t o s h o w i t t o a n yo ne I d id n’t h ave r e ally d eep t ru st w it h . I s h o w ed m y h usb an d , w ho’s a ls o a p hilo so p her, a n d I s a id , h ey, a m I m ak in g an y b ad p hilo so p hic al e rro rs ? H elp m e o ut h ere , ch eck i t a ll t h ro ugh f o r m e. B ecau se w e h ave t h e k in d o f r e la tio nsh ip w e d o, I d id n’t f e el u nco m fo rt a b le s h arin g w it h h im a t a ll. M y b oyfr ie nd i s a w rit e r a n d p oet, a n d h e’s t a u gh t c re ativ e w rit in g fo r m an y y e ars . I w as a b le t o s h are t h e m an usc rip t w it h h im a n d s a y, h ey, i s m y w rit in g re ally b ad , c an y o u h elp m e w it h t h e w rit in g? I n t h e s a m e w ay, i t d id n’t f e el b ad t o s h are w it h h im , b ecau se e ve n th o ugh I k n ew i t w as f u ll o f m is ta ke s a n d p ro b ab ly f u ll o f b ad w rit in g, I l o ve h im a n d t ru st h im . I c o uld s h are w it h h im . 7/13/2021 A philosopher makes the case for polyamory – Vox https://www.vox.com/conversations/2017/2/23/14684236/monogamy-valentines-day-polyamory-marriage-love 7/11 S o I h ave t h at k in d o f r e la tio nsh ip w it h b oth o f t h ese p eo p le , a n d i t p la ys s u ch a h uge r o le i n m y l if e t h at t o s a y t h at i s j u st a b out s e x w ould b e t o m is s t h e p oin t e ntir e ly . Auth o r C arrie J e nkin s. S ean I llin g|Jo nath an J e nkin s I c h ik a w a 7/13/2021 A philosopher makes the case for polyamory – Vox https://www.vox.com/conversations/2017/2/23/14684236/monogamy-valentines-day-polyamory-marriage-love 8/11 W hy d o y o u t h in k p eo p le a re d esp era te t o r e d uce p oly a m ory — o r r e ally a n y f o rm o f l o ve — t o s e x? C arrie J e n k in s I h ave t h o ugh t a b out w hy p eo p le d o t h at. I f y o u c an r e d uce p oly r e la tio nsh ip s — o r s a m e- se x r e la tio nsh ip s, f o r t h at m atte r — t o s e x, i t b eco m es e asie r t o d is m is s t h em a n d n o t h ave to f e el l ik e t h ere ‘s a n yth in g re sp ecta b le t h ere . T hat, u lt im ate ly , i s w hat i t ’s a b out. S ean I llin g C an w e d is e nta n gl e l o ve f r o m s e x? S ho uld w e? C arrie J e n k in s Y e s a n d y e s. F o r a l o t o f p eo p le , l o ve a n d s e x g o a lo ng to ge th er a n d t h at w ork s w ell, j u st a s m ono ga m y w ork s w ell f o r a l o t o f p eo p le . O th er p eo p le a re a se xu al a n d s till f a ll i n r o m an tic lo ve , s o t h at’s o ne k in d o f r e aso n t o d is e nta n gl e t h em . In t h e o th er d ir e ctio n, y o u c an b e h avin g se x w it h s o m eo ne y o u’r e n o t i n l o ve w it h , j u st a h o oku p o r f r ie nd s w it h b enefit s . S ex a n d l o ve c o m e a p art i n b oth d ir e ctio ns. Y o u c an h ave o ne w it h o ut t h e o th er. I t ‘s j u st c o nce p tu ally c o nfu se d i f y o u p re te nd t h ey’r e t h e s a m e. B ut fo r a l o t o f p eo p le t h ey o ve rla p , a n d t h at’s g re at t o o. I t d oesn ‘t m ean t h ey d o f o r e ve ry o ne. S ean I llin g W hat d oes a p ro p erly e xp an siv e c o nce p t o f l o ve l o ok l ik e ? C arrie J e n k in s T hat’s r e ally th e q uestio n, i s n ’t i t ? I ’ v e t a lk e d a b out t w o p oss ib ilit ie s, a n d t h ese a re a b out ro m an tic l o ve . I ‘m n o t t a lk in g ab out l o ve t h at p eo p le f e el f o r t h eir f r ie nd s o r f a m ily o r t h eir k id s o r w hate ve r. I ‘m t a lk in g ab out w hat i s t h e i d eal v e rs io n o f r o m an tic l o ve . O ne p oss ib ilit y t h at I ‘v e t a lk e d a b out i s t h at w e e lim in ate i t . T hat w e s a y r o m an tic is m i s n o t a u se fu l w ay t o d is tin gu is h a c e rt a in k in d o f l o ve . A nd t h ere h ave b een s o m e p hilo so p hers t h at h ave a rg u ed f o r t h at, b ecau se t h ey s a y r o m an tic l o ve i s j u st b ound u p w it h h ete ro no rm ativ it y . I t ‘s b ound u p w it h b ad g e nd er s te re o ty p es. I t ‘s b ound u p w it h a ll k in d s of h is to ric al a sso cia tio ns w it h w om en b ein g pro p ert y a n d gi ve n a w ay b y t h eir f a th ers t o t h eir h usb an d s. A ll t h ese s to rie s w e t h in k o f a s r o m an tic a re f u ll o f p ro b le m atic b ag ga ge . No w, I t h in k r o m an tic l o ve i s s a lv a ge ab le . B ut t h at r e q uir e s b ein g aw are o f t h e n atu re o f lo ve a s i t i s n o w , w hic h i s p art o f t h e r e aso n I ‘m w rit in g th is b ook. T here i s s till a l o t o f 7/13/2021 A philosopher makes the case for polyamory – Vox https://www.vox.com/conversations/2017/2/23/14684236/monogamy-valentines-day-polyamory-marriage-love 9/11 g e nd er s te re o ty p in g asso cia te d w it h r o m an tic l o ve . T here a re s till n o rm ativ e a ss u m ptio ns th at y o u’r e g o in g to g e t m arrie d , h ave b ab ie s, b e m ono ga m ous, a n d b e a p erm an ent, lif e lo ng co up le , a n ucle ar f a m ily . A nd t h at’s a f in e m od el, b ut i t d oesn ‘t w ork f o r e ve ry o ne. S o I t h in k w e n eed t o s te p a w ay f r o m t h e w ays t h at w e u se r o m an tic l o ve t o b ox p eo p le i n . R om an tic l o ve i s n o t o ne t h in g, a n d w e n eed a m od el t h at c ap tu re s t h is . S ean I llin g Y o u m entio ned g e nd er s te re o ty p es j u st n o w , a n d I w ond er i f y o u s e e t h e i n stit u tio n o f m ono ga m y a s e sp ecia lly o p pre ss iv e f o r w om en? C arrie J e n k in s C ert a in ly t h e h is to ric al a sso cia tio ns h ave b een e sp ecia lly o p pre ss iv e t o w om en. S o i f y o u th in k a b out t h e o rigi ns o f m ono ga m ous m arria ge , i n t h e gi vin g aw ay o f w om en f r o m o ne m an t o a n o th er, t h at i s c e rt a in ly o p pre ss iv e . T he f a c t t h at t h ere a re s till e ch o es o f t h is t o d ay i s c e rt a in ly a p ro b le m . T here a re s till a l o t o f g e nd er s te re o ty p es t h at a re a liv e a n d ac tiv e i n c o nte m pora ry m ono ga m ous, h ete ro r e la tio nsh ip s. F o r e xa m ple , i t ‘s s till v e ry s ta tis tic ally u nusu al f o r t h e w if e i n a h ete ro c o up le t o e arn m ore . T here ‘s a ls o s o m e p syc h o lo gi cal e vid ence a b out w om en w ho h ave r o m an tic f a n ta sie s o f b ein g sw ep t u p b y a P rin ce C harm in g fig u re . T hat f a n ta sy, i f t h ey’r e n o t a w are o f i t , i s c o rre la te d w it h h avin g lo w er a m bit io n f o r t h em se lv e s p ers o nally a n d p ro fe ss io nally . S o t h ere i s d efin it e ly a b und le o f c u lt u ra l a sso cia tio ns w it h m ono ga m y t h at a re t h e s o rts o f th in gs I a m r e sis ta n t t o a s a f e m in is t a n d a m t ry in g to p re ss b ac k o n. T hat’s n o t n ece ss a rily b ound u p w it h m ono ga m y p er s e . I t ‘s j u st t h e w ay i t ‘s b een p ra c tic e d . B ut t h ere ‘s a ls o a p ro b le m w it h p atria rc h al m ono ga m y, w hic h i s t h e p ra c tic e o f a ss u m in g th at w om en a re t o b e t h o ugh t o f a s b asic ally a k in d o f p ro p ert y o f t h eir h usb an d s o r i n s o m e w ays a s e co nd ary p art n er i n t h e p art n ers h ip . T hat i s a ls o a p ro b le m , a n d I ‘m n o t ad vo catin g fo r t h at e it h er. T he p ro b le m w it h p atria rc h al p oly g a m y a n d m ono ga m y i s t h e s a m e. I t ‘s n o t t h e m ono ga m y or p oly g a m y — i t ‘s t h e p atria rc h y. S ean I llin g Y o u’r e a n a c ad em ic p hilo so p her w ho h as d ecid ed t o w rit e a c o ntro ve rs ia l b ook a b out a c h arg e d t o p ic f o r a v e ry p ub lic a u d ie nce . W hy d o t h at? 7/13/2021 A philosopher makes the case for polyamory – Vox https://www.vox.com/conversations/2017/2/23/14684236/monogamy-valentines-day-polyamory-marriage-love 10/11 C arrie J e n k in s I w an t t o s ta rt a c o nve rs a tio n. I d on’t c are w heth er e ve ry o ne a g re es w it h w hat I s a y. I j u st w an t p eo p le t o b e t a lk in g ab out t h is . I t h in k t h at’s t h e w ay p ro gre ss g e ts d one. Y o u c an ‘t m ake p ro gre ss b y d ecid in g w hat’s r igh t o r w ro ng an d t h en t e llin g eve ry b od y e ls e . B ut I t h in k w e c an m ake p ro gre ss i f w e g e t m ore p eo p le t h in kin g ab out m ono ga m y, a b out ro m an tic l o ve , a n d w hy i t l o oks t h e w ay i t d oes a n d h o w m uch c o ntro l w e h ave o ve r t h at. I k e ep c o m in g bac k t o t h is i d ea t h at w e h ave s o m uch c o ntro l o ve r w hat l o ve i s , w hat l o ve lo oks l ik e , w hat s to rie s w e t e ll, w hat i s d ep ic te d i n r o m an tic c o m ed ie s, w hat s to rie s a re t o ld i n r o m an ce n ove ls . A ll o f t h ese w ays w e d ete rm in e w hat l o ve i s a re a s o cia l c o nstru ct. W e h ave s o m uch c o ntro l o ve r t h at. T hat m ean s w e a re r e sp onsib le f o r g e tt in g i t r ig h t. I f w e don’t , w e’r e e xc lu d in g peo p le f r o m t h e s o cia l c o nstru ct o f r o m an tic l o ve w it h o ut ju stif ic atio n, a n d t h at m ake s i t d if fic u lt f o r t h em t o l iv e t h e w ay t h ey w an t t o o r t h e w ay th ey n eed t o . W ill y o u s u p port V ox ’s e x pla n ato ry j o urn alis m ? Millio ns t u rn t o V ox t o u nd ers ta n d w hat’s h ap penin g in t h e n ew s. O ur m is s io n h as n eve r b een m ore v it a l t h an i t i s i n t h is m om ent: t o e m pow er t h ro ugh u nd ers ta n d in g. F in an cia l c o ntrib utio ns f r o m o ur r e ad ers a re a c rit ic al p art o f s u p port in g our r e so urc e -in te nsiv e w ork a n d h elp u s k e ep o ur j o urn alis m f r e e f o r a ll. P le ase c o nsid er m ak in g a c o ntr ib utio n to V ox t o d ay f r o m a s l it tle a s $ 3 . 7/13/2021 A philosopher makes the case for polyamory – Vox https://www.vox.com/conversations/2017/2/23/14684236/monogamy-valentines-day-polyamory-marriage-love 11/11




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