This course will focus on the question of the role of physicality in the constitution and meaning of human action. Is action constituted only in rational deliberation? Do the body and its structures play a role? What is really expressed in relation to reality and human destiny by action? How do we experience the body in action? Readings and discussion will center on the conditions and structure of human action, changing conceptions of the body, and the continuities and discontinuities between various theories. Texts will include selections from Aquinas, Blondel, Freud, Merleau-Ponty, Anscombe, Irigaray, and Butler.
Action, Object, and the Body
Maurice Blondel, Action (1893): Essay on a Critique of Life and a Science of Practice.
G.E.M. Anscombe, Intention.
Maurice Meleau-Ponty, Nature: Course Notes from the College de France.
Luce Irigaray, An Ethics of Sexual Difference.
Judith Butler, Bodies That Matter: On the Discursive Limits of Sex.
David S. Crawford
Associate Professor of Moral Theology and Family Law
Dr. Crawford’s teaching spans the areas of moral theology and philosophical ethics, the theological and philosophical anthropology of marriage and family, and legal and political philosophy. His publications address human action, natural law, homosexuality, “gender identity,” and the anthropological implications of modern civil law.Learn More