•  50
    Letting go of blame
    with Per-Erik Milam
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research. forthcoming.
    Most philosophers acknowledge ways of overcoming blame, even blame directed at a culpable offender, that are not forgiving. Sometimes continuing to blame a friend for their offensive comment just isn't worth it, so we let go instead. However, despite being a common and widely recognised experience, no one has offered a positive account of letting go. Instead, it tends to be characterised negatively and superficially, usually in order to delineate the boundaries of forgiveness. This paper gives a…Read more
  •  101
    Sexual Jealousy and Sexual Infidelity
    with Natasha McKeever
    In David Boonin (ed.), The Palgrave Handbook of Sexual Ethics. pp. 93-110. 2022.
    In this chapter, Natasha McKeever and Luke Brunning consider (sexual) jealousy in romantic life. They argue that jealousy is best understood as an emotional response to the threatened loss of love or attention, to which one feels deserving, because of a rival. Furthermore, the general value of jealousy can be questioned, and jealousy’s instrumental value needs to be balanced against a range of potential harms. They assess two potential ways of managing jealousy (which are not mutually exclusive)…Read more
  •  125
    Journal of Applied Philosophy 38 (3): 497-517. 2021.
  •  12
    Moral Failure: On the Impossible Demands of Morality, written by Lisa Tessman (review)
    Journal of Moral Philosophy 17 (4): 449-452. 2020.
  •  71
    Oppression, Forgiveness, and Ceasing to Blame
    Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy 14 (2). 2018.
    Wrongdoing is inescapable. We all do wrong and are wronged; and in response we often blame one another. But if blame is a defining feature of our social lives, so is ceasing to blame. We might excuse, justify, or forgive an offender; or simply let the offence go. Each mode of ceasing to blame is a social practice and each has characteristic norms that influence when and how we do it, as well as how it’s received. We argue that how we relinquish blame, and how effective we are, depends on many ci…Read more
  •  247
    The Distinctiveness of Polyamory
    Journal of Applied Philosophy 35 (3): 513-531. 2018.
    Polyamory is a form of consensual non-monogamy. To render it palatable to critics, activists and theorists often accentuate its similarity to monogamy. I argue that this strategy conceals the distinctive character of polyamorous intimacy. A more discriminating account of polyamory helps me answer objections to the lifestyle whilst noting some of its unique pitfalls. I define polyamory, and explain why people pursue this lifestyle. Many think polyamory is an inferior form of intimacy; I describe …Read more
  •  59
    Compersion: An Alternative to Jealousy?
    Journal of the American Philosophical Association 6 (2): 225-245. 2020.
    Compersion is an important concept for non-monogamous people. Often described as jealousy's opposite, compersion labels positive feelings toward the intimacy of a beloved with other people. Since many people think jealousy is ordinary, intransigent, and even appropriate, compersion can seem psychologically and ethically dubious. I make the case for compersion, arguing it focuses on the flourishing of others and is thus not akin to pride, vicarious enjoyment, or masochistic pleasure. People culti…Read more
  •  9
    The Avoidance Approach to Plural Value
    Theoria 66 (160): 53-70. 2019.
    Value monists and value pluralists disagree deeply. Pluralists want to explain why moral life feels frustrating; monists want clear action guidance. If pluralism is true, our actions may be unable to honour irredeemably clashing values. This possibility could prompt pessimism, but the ‘avoidance approach’ to pluralism holds that although values may conflict inherently, we can take pre-emptive action to avoid situations where they would conflict in practice, rather like a child pirouetting to avo…Read more
  •  94
    How complex is your love? The case of romantic compromises and polyamory
    with Aaron Ben-Ze’ev
    Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 48 (1): 98-116. 2018.
    This article highlights a somewhat neglected aspect of love : their complexity. We suggest distinguishing between three major related types of emotional complexity: emotional diversity, emotional ambivalence, and emotional behavior. The notion of emotional complexity has far-reaching implications for understanding emotions and our wellbeing. This is illustrated by examining the notion of emotional complexity in two common yet complex phenomena in the romantic realm: romantic compromises and poly…Read more
  •  32
    Reconsidering the Soteriological Significance of Śūnyavāda
    Contemporary Buddhism (2): 1-15. 2014.
    The doctrine of emptiness (śūnyavāda) is of significant soteriological importance for the Madhyamaka Buddhism. Therefore it is a reasonable prima facie demand that interpretations of emptiness must accord with this fact. This hermeneutic consideration has been taken to present particular problems for Mark Siderits' semantic interpretation of śūnyavāda. This paper examines Siderits' attempted reconciliation of his semantic interpretation of śūnyavāda with its purported soteriological aspects. I q…Read more
  •  180