What is love ?

Former Dawson student returns for the Humanities conference

By Anna Frey

Noah Moss Brender, a PhD candidate at Boston University and former Dawson student, took the stage in Conrod’s last Thursday afternoon as part of the Public Life and Critical Thinking Humanities Conference.

His topic was “Love is Not a Feeling,” and covered the dynamics and developmental issues related to the relationships we form with our family, friends, and lovers.

“We all know something about it already, we’ve already experienced love in some way or another,” Brender opened. “I want to take this most familiar thing and make it new and strange for you.”

The audience was made up mostly of students attending for their Humanities class. The event was popular, with most of the chairs in Conrod’s taken up by the crowd.

Brender first discussed the relationship between children and their parents, attempting to relate to his audience the importance of family. “Each of you embodies a particular familial set of values,” he stated, “you can’t really understand another person without understanding their family.”

The second half of his presentation focused on the “good stuff,” of friendship and romantic love, as Brender put it. “We look to these relationships as escapes from our family.”

While much of his speech focused on the abstract notion of “love,” Brender’s basic premise was that those who you love become part of you, as you become part of them. When asked about falling out of love, Brender replied, “your lovers, if you really loved them, will continue to be a part of you even after you break up.”

Amos Bohoussou, a fifth semester Professional Theatre student, attended the conference on his own time. “I enjoyed it, I found it very insightful. He took some stuff I knew, and the topics he discussed were all very interesting.”

The conference had been running since Tuesday, though Bohoussou hadn’t attended any of the other topics. “I always had classes to go to,” he explained.

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