Aquinas and Empowerment: Classical Ethics for Ordinary Lives by G. Simon Harak

By G. Simon Harak

Employing the moral techniques of Thomas Aquinas to modern ethical difficulties, this ebook either provides new interpretations of Thomist theology and gives new insights into state-of-the-art puzzling ethical dilemmas. This quantity addresses such modern matters as internalized oppression, specifically because it pertains to girls and African-Americans; feminism and anger; baby abuse; friendship and charity; and eventually, justice and cause. the gathering revives Aquinas as an ethicist who has suitable issues to claim approximately modern issues. those essays illustrate how Thomistic ethics can inspire and empower humans in ethical struggles. because the first publication to exploit Aquinas to discover such matters as baby abuse and oppression, it incorporates a number of techniques to Aquinas' ethics. "Aquinas and Empowerment" is a helpful source for college kids of classical inspiration and modern ethics.

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Extra info for Aquinas and Empowerment: Classical Ethics for Ordinary Lives

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When Cates introduces Audre Lorde into the dialogue, she shows that it is precisely those assumed privileges, with their implied right to dominance, that cause Lorde's anger in the first place. " Cates uses Thomas's analysis to describe Lorde's causes for anger. On the one hand, much of that anger reflects the internalization of a racist and sexist "social yardstick" against which the oppressed could never measure up. To use Kay's image, Egypt continues surreptitiously to enslave "the People" by controlling the way in which they think and feel about themselves and their value.

This perspective will assume that both men and women can acquire habits that become like a second nature. This second nature distorts but does not obliterate basic humanity. This perspective will highlight the effort required to develop new habits and the need for a commitment to gain ever clearer perceptions of reality. Marxists have tended to think of internalized oppression in terms of false consciousness. Some Marxists think that ending false consciousness will be an inevitable (and secondary) by-product of the elimination of fundamental economic exploitation.

A virtue is a good habit, a "characteristic condition relevant to a thing's nature"; vices are bad habits contrary to inherent nature. 19 For Thomas, of course, the flourishing of our nature does not mean satisfaction of our desires as narrowly understood in a capitalist culture. Too often people are misled into believing that satisfaction of any want will lead to fulfillment. Thomas, in contrast, believes that there are truly human desires, and these must be distinguished from acquired tastes.

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