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Reconstructing truth in modern society: John Paul II and the fallibility of Nietzsche

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dc.contributor.advisor Van Niekerk, E. (Prof.) en Welter, Brian en 2009-08-25T11:00:10Z 2009-08-25T11:00:10Z 2009-08-25T11:00:10Z 2007-11-30 en
dc.identifier.citation Welter, Brian (2009) Reconstructing truth in modern society: John Paul II and the fallibility of Nietzsche, University of South Africa, Pretoria, <> en
dc.description.abstract This thesis examines the intellectual environment in which Pope John Paul II's thought operates, especially as it pertains to his writings on the truth. The pontiff's thinking faces open hostility toward Christianity, as exemplified by Friedrich Nietzsche and Michel Foucault. The pope's theology pays attention and builds links to modern thought through its positive engagement with phenomenology and personalism, as well as through its opposition to materialism. Despite these connections, this theology fails to fit well with (post)modern thinking, as it takes a wider view of things in two ways: (1) By offering a spiritual sense of things, it goes beyond thought and takes into account supernatural sources of knowledge, sources which are both a one-time event (the Resurrection of Jesus Christ) and part of the ongoing journey of the Christian community; (2) By boldly referring to traditional, outmoded language, as with the words obedience and humility, with the same level of reverence and fullness of their sense as they were used before the secular-feminist era condemned these virtues. The strange and unique qualities of John Paul II's thinking issues from these two practices. It also arises from his bold ability to engage with modern thought without becoming defensive and without hiding behind the Bible or Catholic piety, though he uses both of these generously. John Paul II offers a clear alternative to the chaos and confusion of post-Enlightenment thought, in both his thought's style and substance. The Holy Father's words cause us to reflect more deeply than those of modern or postmodern thinkers, and call us away from the relativism of Richard Rorty, Foucault, and so many others. The pope's thought succeeds in part because he takes a much wider vista of things, in that he digs more deeply into Western and Christian thought and that he enters this heritage as an inheritor rather than as a skeptical scientist-researcher as in Foucault's case. The pope's thought also succeeds because he assigns spiritual meaning to this journey of Christian and world people. In this sense, his thought is also radically inclusive. en
dc.format.extent 1 online resource (v, 204 leaves)
dc.language.iso en en
dc.subject Personalism en
dc.subject Deconstruction en
dc.subject Postmodernism en
dc.subject Theology en
dc.subject Catholic Church en
dc.subject Truth en
dc.subject Philosophy en
dc.subject Michel Foucault en
dc.subject Friedrich Nietzsche en
dc.subject John Paul II en
dc.subject.ddc 230.2092
dc.subject.lcsh Catholic Church -- Doctrines
dc.subject.lcsh John Paul, II, Pope, 1920-2005 -- Philosophy
dc.subject.lcsh Nietzsche, Friedrich Wilhelm, 1844-1900
dc.subject.lcsh Foucault, Michel, 1926-1984
dc.subject.lcsh Postmodernism -- Religious aspects -- Catholic Church
dc.subject.lcsh Truth -- Religious aspects -- Catholic Church
dc.subject.lcsh Deconstruction -- Religious aspects -- Catholic Church
dc.title Reconstructing truth in modern society: John Paul II and the fallibility of Nietzsche en
dc.type Thesis en
dc.description.department Philosophy, Practical and Systematic Theology en D. Th. (Systematic Theology) en

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