David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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This review article, now published in the National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly, Spring 2009, focuses on several themes in the two volumes, posthumously selected, edited and published by a daughter and son-in-law, of G.E.M. Anscombe’s philosophical and philosophical/theological essays. Of first importance is her philosophical explication and defence of the spirituality of human life, as manifested in even the simplest act such as pointing to something as an example of colour rather than of shape. With that is connected her defence of freedom of choice in face of scientistic doubts. Then there is the question of the proper interpretation of her famous thesis about the dependence of the moral ought on divine law; and the question whether or how she applied her epoch-making explication of intention in her own treatment of moral questions. The review also discusses the progress of her thought about contraception to an understanding of the relation between sex and the good of marriage itself; and her thoughts about the rational preambles to religious faith.
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