In 2006, Illouz joined the Center for the Study of Rationality, then headed by Professor Edna Ullman-Margalit.
Her book Why Love Hurts won the best book award of the Alpine Philosophy Society in France.
Looking at a wide sample of movies and advertising images in women’s magazines of the 1930s, Illouz finds that advertising and cinematic culture presented commodities as the vector for emotional experiences and particularly the experience of romance.
, she argues that while love has always had the capacity to hurt, since the advent of modernity it has hurt in new ways as so much more of ourselves is invested in the choice of a partner.
As teenager, I spent many hours listening to this German rock band called "Die Ärzte” and in one of their songs, the main theme goes something like this: “It is not your fault that the world is as it is, yet, it would be your fault if it ...Why does suffering occupy a central place in contemporary identity?How has emotional capitalism transformed our romantic choices and experiences?Illouz finds evidence of this process of emotional capitalism in various social sites: self-help literature, women's magazines, talk shows, support groups, and the Internet dating sites. What are the social consequences of the current preoccupation with emotions?How did the public sphere become saturated with the exposure of private life?The commercialization of love is the ongoing process of infiltration of commercial and economical stimuli in the daily life of lovers and the association of monetary and non-monetary symbols and commodities in the love relationships.The application of Habermas’ theory is helpful to fully understand the discussion of the relationship between the market and love.Since October 2012 she has been President of Bezalel Academy of Art and Design. She received a BA in sociology, communication and literature in Paris, an MA in literature at Paris X, an MA in communication from the Hebrew University, and received her Ph D in communications and cultural studies at the Annenberg School for Communication of the University of Pennsylvania in 1991, where her mentor was Professor Larry Gross, now the head of the Annenberg School of Communications at USC.She has served as a visiting professor at Northwestern University, Princeton University, the School for Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences in Paris (École des hautes études en sciences sociales) and as a fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study, Berlin (Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin).At the beginning of the book, it is examined how romantic love has changed during time also due to the newly expanding mass markets of leisure.This change lead to the creation of a new process called romanticization of commodities, that is a process in which commodities played a crucial role in experiencing emotions such as love or romance.