Authors
Maria Carl
Seattle University
Abstract
One of St. Thomas Aquinas’s most ingenious, yet underappreciated, philosophical innovations is his synthesis of Plato’s dualism and Aristotle’s hylomorphism in his theory of the human person. Aquinas’s view of the person expresses itself in a number of aspects of his thought. In this paper, I explore how his understanding of the passions is a reflection of his account of the unity of the human person. Just as Aquinas’s view of the person reconciles elements of dualism and hylomorphism, his explanation of the passions steers a middle course between intellectualist and physicalist accounts of the human emotions and resists the reductionism characteristic of these dominant kinds of theories. Because Aquinas depicts the passions as engaging the whole person, I conclude the paper with a brief sketch of the significance of the passions for his moral theory.
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DOI acpaproc20128616
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