Contingency and Fortune in Aquinas's Ethics

Overview

Bowlin argues that the strength of Aquinas' moral theology is his assumption about our common lot: the good we desire is difficult to know and to will, particularly because of contingencies of various kinds—within ourselves, in the ends and objects we pursue, and in the circumstances of choice. Since contingencies are fortune's effects, Aquinas insists that fortune makes good choice difficult. Bowlin explores Aquinas' treatment of virtue, agency, and happiness in this context, and places him more precisely in the...

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Overview

Bowlin argues that the strength of Aquinas' moral theology is his assumption about our common lot: the good we desire is difficult to know and to will, particularly because of contingencies of various kinds—within ourselves, in the ends and objects we pursue, and in the circumstances of choice. Since contingencies are fortune's effects, Aquinas insists that fortune makes good choice difficult. Bowlin explores Aquinas' treatment of virtue, agency, and happiness in this context, and places him more precisely in the history of ethics, among Aristotle, Augustine, and the Stoics.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...this is a collection that should be in every theological library as well as on the bookshelf of every ecumenist." John T. Ford, Religious Studies Review

"Contingecy and Fortune in Aquinas's Ethics is a superb and masterful study....a challenging, provocative, and engaging book....Few works in Aquinas's ethics have been as expertly researched and as carefully argued as this one. Bowlin argues convincingly for a new reading of how Aquinas understood the virtues. Scholars of Aquinas are indebted to him and, I suspect, will be conversing with him, and learning from him, in the years ahead." Modern Theology

...well worth reading..." Theological Studies

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Product Details

Table of Contents

Preface; List of abbreviations; Introduction; 1. Virtue and difficulty; 2. The contingency of the human good; 3. Natural law and the limits of contingency; 4. Virtue and discontent; 5. Virtue and fortune; Epilogue: hope and happiness; References; Index.

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