The Phenomenology of Sex, Love, and Intimacy  book cover
1st Edition

The Phenomenology of Sex, Love, and Intimacy

ISBN 9780815358107
Published February 7, 2019 by Routledge
168 Pages

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USD $46.95

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Book Description

The Phenomenology of Sex, Love, and Intimacy presents a phenomenological exploration of love as it manifests itself through sexual desires and intimate relationships. Setting up a unique dialogue between psychology and philosophy, Susi Ferrarello offers a perspective through which clinicians can inform their practice on diverse issues of human sexuality.

Drawing on Husserl’s phenomenology, Ferrarello’s analysis of love spans a range of disciplines including psychology, theology, biology, epistemology, and axiology, as well as areas related to gender, consent, and political control. Combining Husserlian perspectives on ethics with a focus on lived-experience, this text will deepen therapists’ understanding of love as the subject of interdisciplinary inquiry and enable them to locate questions of sexuality and intimacy within an academic framework.

With key theoretical principles included to allow clinicians to think through and clarify their practice, this book will be a valuable tool for sex therapists, marriage and family therapists, and counselors, as well as psychology and philosophy students alike.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1 -- Practical Intentionality and Gefühlsintentionalität

Chapter 2 -- Sex with and without the ego

Chapter 3 -- Perversions

Chapter 4 -- Introduction to the Phenomenology of Philia

Chapter 5 -- Forced intimacy

Chapter 6 -- Jealousy

Chapter 7 -- Agape

Chapter 8 -- Sexual Normality and Intercorporeality

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Susi Ferrarello is a professor at California State University and Saybrook University, teaching philosophy to graduate students of psychology. She holds a PhD in philosophy from Sorbonne and an MA in Human Rights and Political Science from the University of Bologna.


"The Phenomenology of Sex, Love, and Intimacy is a phenomenological, philosophical analysis rooted in Husserlian thought about various forms of love. Dr. Ferrarello discusses in exquisite detail the layers of intentionality, the ego and intersubjective experience including related themes of desire, corporeality, choice, empathy, consent and intimacy, providing a new view into what can easily be claimed to be among the most important experiences humans have. This is an exceptional text for philosophy students as well as scholars of sexuality and relationships."

Nicolle Zapien, Dean of the Professional School of Psychology and Health and Faculty in the Department of Human Sexuality at California Institute of Integral Studies.

"Interesting, helpful, and of use to a variety of groups from philosophy scholars to clinical professionals who are familiar in advance with the phenomenological language. What seems to me the most significant feature of the text is that it critically provokes the readers to find their place in questioning and reshaping responsibly the social sphere in which they live with respect to the issue of human sexuality."

Khashayar Boroomandjazi, Philosophy PhD, Metapsychology Online Reviews, (Volume 23, Issue 30)