chapter  14
17 Pages

Everyday Eros

Toward a Phenomenology of Erotic Inception
ByJack Marsh

This essay offers a preliminary phenomenology of erotic inception. I show that everyday eros begins in (1) the given lifeworld of Dasein’s socialization, (2) with an affective-elective moment of erotic interest that draws an attracting attention to the interplay of another’s bodily details with their lived alterity; (3) when communication begins between a potential couple, they (4) set off an oscillating process of relation. This oscillation occurs between the euphoria at “the possibilities” made available in the new relationship and a difficult and sometimes painful reckoning with the limits and relative fit of their respective styles, traumas, histories, and aspirations. In the dynamic dance of dating, and in the shared practice of tending-the-ground, couples (5) carry out an implicit assessment of each other as candidates for erotic commitment.