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Wisdom, Law, and VirtueEssays in Thomistic Ethics$
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Lawrence Dewan

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780823227969

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: March 2011

DOI: 10.5422/fso/9780823227969.001.0001

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ST. Thomas, James Keenan, and the Will

ST. Thomas, James Keenan, and the Will

(p.151) Chapter 9 ST. Thomas, James Keenan, and the Will
Wisdom, Law, and Virtue

Lawrence Dewan

Fordham University Press

James Keenan's book Goodness and Rightness in Thomas Aquinas's Summa Theologiae offers us an occasion to reflect on the conception of the will and its relation to intellect. This book favors a distinction involving the use of the words “goodness” and “rightness.” Whereas classical Christian moral theology has spoken of both persons and their actions as “good” and “bad,” Keenan proposes that one reserve the vocabulary of “goodness” for persons (persons are good if they strive to do the right thing), while speaking of actions as “right” and “wrong.” This chapter discusses Chapters 2 and 3, which are the fundamentals for the reading of Thomas presented in the book. It then expresses an opinion on the proposed distinction between goodness and rightness.

Keywords:   Thomas Aquinas, James Keenan, goodness, rightness, Christian moral theology

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