A Book About Love

Jon­ah Lehrer
  • From the Publisher
June 29, 2016

Weav­ing togeth­er sci­en­tif­ic stud­ies from clin­i­cal psy­chol­o­gists, lon­gi­tu­di­nal stud­ies of health and hap­pi­ness, his­tor­i­cal accounts and lit­er­ary depic­tions, child-rear­ing man­u­als, and the lan­guage of online dat­ing sites, Jon­ah Lehrer’s A Book About Love plumbs the most mys­te­ri­ous, most for­ma­tive, most impor­tant impulse gov­ern­ing our lives.

Love con­fus­es and com­pels us — and it can destroy and define us. It has inspired our great­est poet­ry, defined our soci­eties and our beliefs, and gov­erns our biol­o­gy. From the way infants attach to their par­ents, to the way we fall in love with anoth­er per­son, to the way some find a love for God or their pets, to the way we remem­ber and mourn love after it ends, this book focus­es on research that attempts, even in glanc­ing ways, to deal with the long-term and the every­day. The most dan­ger­ous myth of love is that it’s easy, that we fall into the feel­ing and then the feel­ing takes care of itself. While we can eas­i­ly mea­sure the dopamine that caus­es the ini­tial feel­ings of falling” in love, the part­ner­ships and devo­tions that last decades or longer remain a mys­tery. This book is about that mys­tery. Love, Lehrer argues, is not built sole­ly on over­whelm­ing pas­sion, but, fas­ci­nat­ing­ly, on a set of skills to be cul­ti­vat­ed over a lifetime.

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