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Rousseau's Theodicy of Self-Love – Evil, Rationality, and the Drive for Recognition - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Rousseau's Theodicy of Self-Love: Evil, Rationality, and the Drive for Recognition

Frederick Neuhouser


This book studies Rousseau's rich and complex theory of the type of self-love (amour propre) that, for him, marks the central difference between humans and beasts. Amour-propre is the passion that drives human individuals to seek the esteem, approval, admiration, or love — the recognition — of their fellow beings. This book reconstructs Rousseau's understanding of what the drive for recognition is, why it is so problematic, and how its presence opens up far-reaching developmental possibilities for creatures that possess it. One of Rousseau's central theses is that amour-propre in its corrupted ... More

Keywords: amour-propre, passion, recognition, esteem, pride, vanity, selfhood, subjectivity

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2008 Print ISBN-13: 9780199542673
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2009 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199542673.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Frederick Neuhouser, author
Columbia University
Author Webpage

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