Laura Kipnis Against Love Analysis

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While people are often able to identify when they feel the emotion love, love itself seems to defy definition. In her essay “Against Love”, Laura Kipnis argues that love cannot exist within the social forms associated with love, such as marriage, monogamy, mutuality, and domesticity. However, in her argument, she fails to offer her definition of love and does not identify love as an emotion. In failing to recognize love as emotion, she reinforces the idea she rejects: that love can only exist in select forms. In actuality, love does not follow any pre-determined guidelines. Love is subjective and can exist in any and all forms. Therefore, Laura Kipnis correctly says that love exists outside of social forms, but she falsely argues that love cannot exist within these constructs.…show more content…
Domesticity involves “companionship, child-rearing convenience, reassuring predictability and many other benefits” according to Kipnis (667). While Kipnis is right to suggest that a happy home does not necessitate love, she never develops her argument against this social form and in fact brings up phrases that weaken her argument. The words “companionship, child-rearing, and predictability” bring to mind the comforts many people associate with love. While domesticity is not a required expression of love, it is commonly expressed through domesticity, for example, mother’s home-cooked meals. Kipnis never cites evidence against domesticity, perhaps because strong evidence exists proving that home life can be an expression for love. Again, love cannot recognize social forms, so saying that love can only exist in conjunction with domesticity is just as wrong as saying it can’t. Kipnis, however, correctly suggests that in the past domesticity has been a destructive expression of love when it reinforces manipulation, which she wrongly identifies as
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