Not Properly a Person

Faith and Philosophy 26 (2):186-204 (2009)
Like Aristotle, Thomas Aquinas holds that the rational soul is the substantial form of the human body. In so doing, he takes himself to be rejecting a Platonic version of substance dualism; his criticisms, however, apply equally to a traditional understanding of Cartesian dualism. Aquinas’s own peculiar brand of dualism is receiving increased attention from contemporary philosophers—especially those attracted to positions that fall between Cartesian substance dualism and reductive materialism. What Aquinas’s own view amounts to, however, is subject to debate. Philosophers (such as J. P. Moreland and Scott Rae) have claimed that ‘Thomistic substance dualism’ (TSD) centers around two beliefs: (1) the rational soul is an immaterial substance, and (2) this immaterial substance is the human person. In this paper, I argue that labeling such an account ‘Thomistic’ proves dangerously misleading—not only does Aquinas himself explicitly deny both of these claims, but he denies them for philosophically significant reasons. Furthermore, I argue that Aquinas’s own position provides an account of human nature both more coherent and philosophically attractive
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.5840/faithphil200926226
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 23,664
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA
Andrew M. Bailey (2015). Animalism. Philosophy Compass 10 (12):867-883.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Jason T. Eberl (2010). Varieties of Dualism. International Philosophical Quarterly 50 (1):39-56.
William Lycan (2009). Giving Dualism its Due. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 87 (4):551-563.
Joungbin Lim (2010). Dualism, Physicalism, and the Passion of the Christ. Proceedings of the Xxii World Congress of Philosophy 45:185-197.
Penelope Mackie (2011). Property Dualism and Substance Dualism. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 111 (1pt1):181-199.
Kevin W. Sharpe (2005). Thomas Aquinas and Nonreductive Physicalism. Proceedings of the American Catholic Philosophical Association 79:217-227.
David S. Oderberg (2005). Hylemorphic Dualism. Social Philosophy and Policy 22 (2):70-99.
Dean Zimmerman (2010). From Property Dualism to Substance Dualism. Aristotelian Society Supplementary Volume 84 (1):119 - 150.

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

46 ( #104,317 of 1,902,892 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

4 ( #219,519 of 1,902,892 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.