Wednesday, October 30, 2019

New from Editiones Scholasticae

Editiones Scholasticae, the publisher of my books Scholastic Metaphysics and Aristotle’s Revenge, informs me that both of them will within a few days be available in eBook versions.  Also new from the publisher is a German translation of my book Philosophy of Mind.  (Previously they had published German translations of The Last Superstition and Five Proofs of the Existence of God.)  Take a look at Editiones Scholasticae’s new webpage for further information, as well as for information about other new releases from the publisher.  You will find both new works by contemporary writers in the Scholastic tradition, and reprints of older and long out of print works in that tradition.  (The original webpage is still online as well.)

Saturday, October 26, 2019

John Paul II in defense of the nation and patriotism

In chapters 11-15 of his last book Memory and Identity, Pope St. John Paul II provides a lucid exposition of the idea of the nation as a natural social institution and of the virtue of patriotism, as these have been understood in traditional natural law theory and Catholic moral theology.  The relevance to current controversies will be obvious.

What is the nation, and what is patriotism?  John Paul begins by noting the connection between the nation and the family, where the former is in a sense an extension of the latter:

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Masculinity and the Marvel movies

Some time back, John Haldane gave a Thomistic Institute talk here in Los Angeles on the theme of evil in the movies and in the movie industry.  During the Q and A (at about the 40 minute mark, and again after the 1:16 mark) the subject of superhero movies came up, and Haldane was critical of their current prevalence.  In developing this criticism, he draws a useful distinction between fantasy and imagination.

Friday, October 11, 2019

Around the web

At The Catholic Thing, Fr. Thomas Weinandy on the studied ambiguity of Pope Francis.  In his new book Conciliar Octet, Fr. Aidan Nichols on the hermeneutic of continuity and Vatican II.

At Medium, philosopher Kathleen Stock on gender theory versus academic freedom in the UK.  At Inside Higher Education, twelve prominent philosophers defend the right to free inquiry on matters of sex and gender. 

Philosopher Daniel A. Kaufman on the “woke” fanatics increasingly infesting academic philosophy, at The Electric Agora.  Richard Marshall interviews Kaufman at 3:16. 

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Transubstantiation and hylemorphism

One of the key themes of the early modern philosophers’ revolt against Scholasticism was a move away from an Aristotelian hylemorphist conception of the nature of physical substance to some variation or other of the mechanical philosophy.  The other day I was asked a very interesting question: Can transubstantiation be formulated in terms of a mechanistic conception of physical substance rather than a hylemorphic one?  My answer was that I would not peremptorily say that it cannot be, but that the suggestion certainly raises serious philosophical and theological problems.