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Mirror, Mirror: The Uses and Abuses of Self-Love

Wednesday 26 March 2014

1 Hour


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Narcissism, vanity, pride and self-esteem are more complex than they might appear and have good and bad sides, says philosophy teacher and bestselling writer Simon Blackburn. He draws on philosophy, psychology, literature, history and popular culture to examine self-love, from the myth of Narcissus to today’s industry in self-esteem. Blackburn looks at what many of the great thinkers, including Aristotle, Cicero, Adam Smith, Kant and Iris Murdoch, have said about self-love, and he considers some of today’s manifestations of self-love such as the ‘selfie’, plastic surgery and the overconfidence of Tony Blair and George W Bush.

Blackburn taught philosophy at the University of Oxford, University of North Carolina and University of Cambridge. He is author of bestselling philosophy books including Think, Being Good, Lust and Truth.