Humanum Books

Prior to the foundation of Humanum Academic Press, the John Paul II Institute published a series of books with Eerdmans Publishing Company under the Humanum imprint.

Love and the Dignity of Human Life: On Nature and Natural Law

What does it mean to love someone? What does the concept of human dignity mean, and what are its consequences? What marks the end of a person’s life? Is personhood more than consciousness? These perplexing questions lurk beneath the surface of everyday life, surfacing only to demand urgent attention in crises.

Renowned German philosopher Robert Spaemann addresses these and other foundational enigmas in three eloquent short essays. Speaking wisdom to controversy, he offers carefully considered, novel approaches to key philosophical and theological questions about the nature of human love (“The Paradoxes of Love”), dignity (“Human Dignity and Human Nature”), and death (“Is Brain Death the Death of a Human Person?”).

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Discovering the Human Person: In Conversation with John Paul II

A longtime friend and student of the late Pope John Paul II, Stanislaw Grygiel in this book reflects on the pope’s life and thought, giving new insight into his character and his vision of beauty as the path that leads us to God.

More than simply biographical information about John Paul II — who was Bishop Karol Wojtyla before he became pope — or a dry academic analysis of his teaching, Discovering the Human Person derives from Grygiel’s extensive firsthand interaction with Wojtyla. Grygiel reflects on the importance of communion as the ground of John Paul II’s life, particularly in response to the communist environment that surrounded him in Poland. He also addresses the pope’s call for a new evangelization, his understanding of marriage and family, and the relationship of those to a genuine, healthy understanding of nation and state.

This volume is available for purchase from Eerdmans.

2015 Catholic Press Association Book Award Winner: Honorable Mention in Theology

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Freedom, Truth, and Human Dignity: The Second Vatican Council's Declaration on Religious Freedom

Pope Paul VI characterized the Second Vatican Council’s Declaration on Religious Freedom — Dignitatis Humanae — as one of the greatest documents of Vatican II. It is also perhaps the most intensely debated document of the Council; both the drafting of the Declaration of Religious Freedom and its reception have been marked by deep disagreements about what this teaching means for the Church.

In this book David Schindler and Nicholas Healy promote a deeper understanding of this important document. In addition to presenting a new translation of the approved text of the Declaration, Freedom, Truth, and Human Dignity makes available for the first time in English the five drafts of the document that were presented to the Council bishops leading up to the final version. The book also includes an original interpretive essay on Dignitatis Humanae by Schindler and an essay on the genesis and redaction history of the text by Healy.

This volume is available from Eerdmans Publishing Company.

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Mystery and Sacrament of Love: A Theology of Marriage and the Family for the New Evangelization

Marriage and the family are at the forefront of the burning questions being debated by civil society and the church today. Cultural changes in our increasingly secularized society have dire consequences in the family sphere, requiring a Christian response that is faithful to the Church’s tradition, says Marc Cardinal Ouellet.

In Mystery and Sacrament of Love Ouellet clearly expounds a theology of marriage and the Catholic Church’s understanding of the sacrament celebrated between spouses and God. Developed with influences from Pope Francis, the theological intuitions of Vatican II, the contributions of Saint John Paul II (the “pope of the family”), and the innovative thought of Hans Urs von Balthasar, Ouellet’s study lays the foundations for a faithful resurgence of well-being for families in our contemporary day and age.

This volume is now available from Eerdmans.

2016 Catholic Press Association Book Award Winner: Third Place in Marriage Category.

Mystery and sacrement of love

Torn Asunder: Children, the Myth of the Good Divorce, and the Recovery of Origins

This book examines anew the nature and meaning of marriage from the standpoint of what adult children of divorce have actually experienced. After decades of talk about the rights of adults to get a divorce and the benefits for children of an amicable split between parents (a so-called “good divorce”), these authors—theologians, philosophers, political scientists, lawyers, psychologists, sociologists, and cultural critics—effectively unsettle conventional opinion.

Richard P. Fitzgibbons, Jeanne Heffernan Schindler, Elizabeth Kantor, Nathan Schlueter, Margaret R. Laracy, Andrew J. Sodergren, Lisa Lickona, Antonio López, Paul Sullins, Ryan C. MacPherson, Vicki Thorn, Elizabeth Marquardt, Sr. M. Maximilia Um, Margaret Harper McCarthy, Gintautas Vaitoska, Andrew Root.

This volume is now available from Eerdmans.

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