Date of Award

Summer 2017

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Philosophy

First Advisor

Dr. Robert E. Wood

Second Advisor

Fr. James Lehrberger

Third Advisor

Dr. Michael Sharkey

Abstract

This dissertation begins from the guiding notion that Bernard Lonergan and Martin Heidegger, by virtue of their dialogue with the Western philosophic tradition and their attempt to overcome the modern paradigm of knowing and of the human person, and when read together, offer a unique and broad horizon wherein to situate a robust philosophical anthropology, taking the human person as both an intellectual being and as fully situated in a history and culture. The basic thesis is that, taken together, Lonergan and Heidegger offer a framework for getting beyond or sublating the impasses of modern thought. The dissertation first lays out the basis of the claim that Lonergan and Heidegger can be read as responding specifically to the problematic set by modern philosophy. It then presents each thinker’s formulation of that problem. The bulk of the dissertation lays out, as running parallel, some of the central features of each thinker’s master works—Insight and Being and Time—with an eye to allowing their complementarity stand forth. As regards Lonergan, we treat first the notion of insight, followed by the patterns of experience as pre-reflective organizing principles of experience; then we move on to a treatment of history and the place of fully-human knowing in that history, with a discussion of the self-affirmation of the knower. With Heidegger, we begin with a discussion of Being-in-the-world, move through a treatment of historicity and facticity—Dasein’s “thrownness”—and then proceed to a discussion of judgment and the ways in which knowing must be regarded as a founded (or non-primary) mode of access to reality. Finally, we compare both thinkers’ understandings of being in a final chapter, and suggest that these understandings of being are an essential part of both thinkers’ understandings of the human person. The dissertation concludes with a brief assessment of the possible avenues of further investigation, with a special emphasis on the possible development of a philosophical anthropology taking its bearings from the insights of Lonergan and Heidegger.

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