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Antony Kaniaru

Bio: Antony Kaniaru is an academic researcher. The author has contributed to research in topic(s): Rationality & Category mistake. The author has an hindex of 1, co-authored 1 publication(s) receiving 18 citation(s).

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01 Jan 2012
TL;DR: In this article, the authors argue that the belief that there is a polar opposition between body and soul (mind) is a category mistake, and propose an alternative to the rationality-relationality turn by following Karl Barth and argue that most theories of justice are also culpable of marginalizing intellectually impaired individuals.
Abstract: The aim of this thesis is to rethink the question of rationality as the defining mark of what it is to be human in light of profoundly cognitively impaired individuals We attempt to hold a conversation between theologians who traditionally emphasized rationality, and those who stress relationality as the sine qua non of human beings in order to demonstrate that both have traditionally marginalized individuals who are cognitively impaired Finally following Karl Barth, we attempt to retrieve the theme of embodiment to augment relationality in theological anthropology In Part I (chapter 2 and 3) we analyse the historical understanding of the imago Dei from a Christian West perspective We trace the tradition from Joseph Fletcher back to Irenaeus through Aquinas and Augustine, and examine how their notions of the imago Dei have traditionally marginalized intellectually impaired persons By equating the imago with ‘rational souls’, the tradition perpetuates the exclusion and stigmatization of cognitively impaired persons Chapter 3 analyses the rationality-relationality turn, ie, the effort by Christian theology to overcome the traditional overemphasis of rationality Here we engage with Eastern Orthodox theologians John Zizioulas and Christos Yannaras who can be considered paradigmatic examples for a relational anthropology and thus are of particular importance in the popularization of the ‘relational turn’ In Part II (chapter 4, 5 and 6), we offer an alternative to the rationality-relationality turn by following Karl Barth Here we push against a Cartesian dualistic ‘criterion of personhood’, and argue that the belief there is a polar opposition between body and soul (mind) is a category mistake Thus we attempt to retrieve the theme of embodiment in light of profound cognitive impairment In chapter 5, we engage with John Rawls and Martha Nussbaum to show that most theories of justice are also culpable of marginalizing intellectually impaired individuals Here we attempt to show why secular theories of justice do not work, and so finally suggest a theistic grounding of justice Chapter 6 examines the practical issue of care for fellow human beings who are cognitively impaired

18 citations

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TL;DR: The Law of Peoples as discussed by the authors is an ideal normative framework for international law that accommodates a measure of realism and rejects the idea of a world-state, but it is not a model for the realistic utopia sketched in The Law of Nations.
Abstract: The Law of Peoples John Rawls Harvard 1999 John Rawls, the great political philosopher, has turned his reflections to questions of international justice, much as his philosophical ancestor Kant did toward the end of his career. Indeed, Kant's conception of a "pacific federation" of states in Perpetual Peace is Rawls's acknowledged model for the "realistic utopia" sketched in The Law of Peoples, which expands upon his 1993 essay by the same title (without, however, revising its basic argument). Despite differing philosophical constraints and geopolitical conditions, both Kant and Rawls aim to develop an ideal normative framework for international law that accommodates a measure of realism and rejects the idea of a world-state. Unfortunately, in its uncritical acceptance of so-called "decent hierarchical societies" even at the level of ideal theory, the normative claim of Rawls's Law of Peoples is undermined. This philosophical appeasement, meant to secure perpetual peace in our time through a moderately demanding Law of Peoples that liberal and "decent" hierarchical societies alike can endorse, departs fundamentally from Kant's cosmopolitanism. For Kant, the "First Definitive Article of a Perpetual Peace-as opposed to a temporary interruption of hostilities-is that each member state of the foedus pacif cum must have a republican form of government, which is partly founded upon "the principle of legal equality for everyone (as citizens)." By contrast, Rawls weakens his ideal of international justice to buy the assent of hierarchical societies, which by definition lack equality among citizens, at the price of sacrificing a theoretical basis for justifying reforms of the practices and institutions of these hierarchical societies above a minimal level of decency. Rawls's complex argument begins by extending the original position, in which principles of justice for the basic structure of society are chosen under epistemic constraints that ensure fairness, from a single liberal society to what he calls the Society of Liberal Peoples. In a second step, though still within ideal theory, he argues that the substantive principles comprising the Law of Peoples are also acceptable to decent hierarchical societies, which possess decent consultation hierarchies and common good conceptions of justice. Despite being inegalitarian, decent hierarchical societies do respect basic human rights, allow some dissent, and at least consult with representatives of groups whose members are denied full citizenship rights. …

1,084 citations


01 Jan 2002

873 citations

Journal ArticleDOI


442 citations



01 Jan 1933
TL;DR: The Nature and Destiny of Man as mentioned in this paper is a collection of Gifford lectures published by Reinhold Niebuhr in the early nineteen nineties, with a focus on the nature and nature of man.
Abstract: Theologians abroad have been known to express concern at the apparent lack of interest in contemporary American Protestant thought, which Catholics on this side of the ocean display. If there were this lack of interest, the reasons for it would not be hard to find. American Protestants depend so much on German thinkers that one might as well read the Germans, especially since their theological work has a freshness which the Americans never quite seem to achieve. But there are more radical reasons. In the more important works published in America, profound metaphysical speculation is too frequently marred by a pervasive carelessness about the precise definition and meaning of abstract terms. Even fellow Protestant theologians, as one can gather from the reviews of such books, find it necessary to confess that the author's precise meaning in many points escapes them. The prevailing accent upon novelty and originality in speculation does not improve the situation. A cognate difficulty is the immense patience which the Catholic theologian must exercise with the Protestant theologian's misunderstanding and misstatement of Catholic doctrines about which there is no lack of clarity whatsoever. The Catholic knows the great cost, in terms of intellectual discipline, with which the precision and clarity of his theology are achieved and maintained. He finds it difficult to approach with sympathy any work which evades a similar intellectual discipline both in the precision of the author's own thinking and in the meticulous care with which contrary positions are presented. Both of these difficulties are encountered in The Nature and Destiny of Man, in which Professor Reinhold Niebuhr publishes his series of Gifford lectures. Even to Protestants who are more familiar with him, Niebuhr makes hard reading. He is much more difficult for a Catholic. Morever, he not unfrequently, however unwittingly, misstates the Catholic position. Yet it must be recognized that Niebuhr is a man of reputation amongst our Protestant brethren. He is known as the author of a series of books which have stamped him as a thinker "who is going politically to the Left and theologically to the Right." He has been for a number of years professor at Union Theological Seminary in New York. These lectures were given at the University of Edinburgh in a chair which has been occupied by Archbishop Temple and Sir Charles Sherrington, discussing the same subject matter. He was chosen, therefore, to represent American Protestant theology in a very distinguished setting. These facts may justify the present attempt to set forth some of the salient ideas of Professor Niebuhr's two volumes. Because of the difficulty alluded to above, there is a not inconsiderable danger that this review may in some instances fail of perfect accuracy in representing Niebuhr's views. To minimize this danger we shall, so far as possible, let the

228 citations

Journal Article


01 Jan 1999-Thomist

188 citations