Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Understanding LovePhilosophy, Film, and Fiction$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Susan Wolf and Christopher Grau

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780195384512

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195384512.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 04 December 2020

Projected Love

Projected Love

(p.141) 7 Projected Love
Understanding Love

Rae Langton

Oxford University Press

Langton considers the role of projection in love, in fiction and in the literal projection of film, taking Ian McEwan’s The Innocent—the novel and the film based upon it —as a case study. She distinguishes three kinds of projection, all described by Hume: phenomenological gilding, wishful thinking, and pseudo-empathy. Projection has a distinctive role to play in love when it goes well, and when it goes wrong, as illustrated in some grueling scenes from the novel. Langton argues that the film fails in its depiction of love, where the novel spectacularly succeeds: and that this is because love, as it is projected on screen, must inevitably miss something significant in its attempts to convey love, as perceptually projected on the world by lovers. This ‘something’—how the world ‘lights up’ for lovers—can be better captured by a good novelist, whose empathic skill and imaginative power finds no parallel in film.

Keywords:   projection, love, empathy, wishful thinking, Ian McEwan, The Innocent, Hume

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .