MORAL BELIEVING ANIMALS HUMAN PERSONHOOD AND CULTURE

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Moral Believing Animals

Author : Christian Smith
ISBN : 9780199731978
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 56.38 MB
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What kind of animals are human beings? And how do our visions of the human shape our theories of social action and institutions? In Moral, Believing Animals, Christian Smith advances a creative theory of human persons and culture that offers innovative, challenging answers to these and other fundamental questions in sociological, cultural, and religious theory. Smith suggests that human beings have a peculiar set of capacities and proclivities that distinguishes them significantly from other animals on this planet. Despite the vast differences in humanity between cultures and across history, no matter how differently people narrate their lives and histories, there remains an underlying structure of human personhood that helps to order human culture, history, and narration. Drawing on important recent insights in moral philosophy, epistemology, and narrative studies, Smith argues that humans are animals who have an inescapable moral and spiritual dimension. They cannot avoid a fundamental moral orientation in life and this, says Smith, has profound consequences for how sociology must study human beings.
Category: Philosophy

Moral Believing Animals

Author : Christian Smith
ISBN : 9780199883028
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 90.51 MB
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What kind of animals are human beings? And how do our visions of the human shape our theories of social action and institutions? In Moral, Believing Animals, Christian Smith advances a creative theory of human persons and culture that offers innovative, challenging answers to these and other fundamental questions in sociological, cultural, and religious theory. Smith suggests that human beings have a peculiar set of capacities and proclivities that distinguishes them significantly from other animals on this planet. Despite the vast differences in humanity between cultures and across history, no matter how differently people narrate their lives and histories, there remains an underlying structure of human personhood that helps to order human culture, history, and narration. Drawing on important recent insights in moral philosophy, epistemology, and narrative studies, Smith argues that humans are animals who have an inescapable moral and spiritual dimension. They cannot avoid a fundamental moral orientation in life and this, says Smith, has profound consequences for how sociology must study human beings.
Category: Social Science

Moral Believing Animals

Author : Christian Smith
ISBN : 0195347536
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 47.88 MB
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What kind of animals are human beings? And how do our visions of the human shape our theories of social action and institutions? In Moral, Believing Animals, Christian Smith advances a creative theory of human persons and culture that offers innovative, challenging answers to these and other fundamental questions in sociological, cultural, and religious theory. Smith suggests that human beings have a peculiar set of capacities and proclivities that distinguishes them significantly from other animals on this planet. Despite the vast differences in humanity between cultures and across history, no matter how differently people narrate their lives and histories, there remains an underlying structure of human personhood that helps to order human culture, history, and narration. Drawing on important recent insights in moral philosophy, epistemology, and narrative studies, Smith argues that humans are animals who have an inescapable moral and spiritual dimension. They cannot avoid a fundamental moral orientation in life and this, says Smith, has profound consequences for how sociology must study human beings.
Category: Social Science

What Is A Person

Author : Christian Smith
ISBN : 9780226765945
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 69.96 MB
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The task of understanding human beings, what we ourselves are, our constitution and condition, is a perennial problem in philosophy and related disciplines. Smith argues here that our understanding of human persons is threatened by technological development and capricious academic theories alike, seeking to deny or relativize the personhood of humanity. Smith's book puts a stake in the ground, in defense of a view of the human that is genuinely humanistic in the traditional sense and capable of sustaining with intellectual coherence things like modern human rights and universal benevolence.
Category: Philosophy

To Flourish Or Destruct

Author : Christian Smith
ISBN : 9780226231952
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 62.31 MB
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Christian Smith is a force to conjure with in sociology, both in its empirical forays (studies of youth and religious life) and in its higher reaches of theory, where his work sets out to move culture, morality, and identity to the center of social thought. We published his 2011 book, "What Is a Person?," to critical plaudits and healthy sales. Striking a middle path between extremes of positivist science and relativism, Smith s theory of personhood teased out how we can know what is good in personal and social life, and what sociology can tell us about human rights and dignity. "To Flourish or Destruct "is a sequel. It builds on the earlier book to explore the question of human motivations for action. In arguing for a sociological turn in a more humanist direction, he sets up a scaffolding for a philosophy of moral realism that makes human flourishing (the realization of basic human goods) a centerpiece of social science. Smith s Aristotelian account of flourishing argues that genuinely investing in the flourishing of "other" people is a necessary condition for personal flourishingin short, learning to love others. The guiding assumption is that flourishing is the natural aim of all human life. He then turns to the question of evil (the absence or privation of what is good), with extended consideration of Stalin and Hitler and totalitarianism in general, in contrast to his inventory of basic human goods, motivations, and interests. The title poses the question: will I flourish or will I destruct? On which path is my life moving?"
Category: Philosophy

Souls In Transition

Author : Christian Smith
ISBN : 9780195371796
Genre : Religion
File Size : 41.69 MB
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Based on candid interviews with thousands of young people tracked over a five-year period, this book reveals how the religious practices of the teenagers portrayed in Soul Searching have been strengthened, challenged, and often changed as they have moved into adulthood.
Category: Religion

Resisting Reagan

Author : Christian Smith
ISBN : 0226763331
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 41.73 MB
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A comprehensive analysis of the U.S. Central America peace movement, Resisting Reagan explains why more than one hundred thousand U.S. citizens marched in the streets, illegally housed refugees, traveled to Central American war zones, committed civil disobedience, and hounded their political representatives to contest the Reagan administration's policy of sponsoring wars in Nicaragua and El Salvador. Focusing on the movement's three most important national campaigns—Witness for Peace, Sanctuary, and the Pledge of Resistance—this book demonstrates the centrality of morality as a political motivator, highlights the importance of political opportunities in movement outcomes, and examines the social structuring of insurgent consciousness. Based on extensive surveys, interviews, and research, Resisting Reagan makes significant contributions to our understanding of the formation of individual activist identities, of national movement dynamics, and of religious resources for political activism.
Category: Social Science

Saving America

Author : Robert Wuthnow
ISBN : 0691119260
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 42.7 MB
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On January 29, 2001, President George W. Bush signed an executive order creating the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives. This action marked a key step toward institutionalizing an idea that emerged in the mid-1990s under the Clinton administration--the transfer of some social programs from government control to religious organizations. However, despite an increasingly vocal, ideologically charged national debate--a debate centered on such questions as: What are these organizations doing? How well are they doing it? Should they be supported with tax dollars?--solid answers have been few. In Saving America? Robert Wuthnow provides a wealth of up-to-date information whose absence, until now, has hindered the pursuit of answers. Assembling and analyzing new evidence from research he and others have conducted, he reveals what social support faith-based agencies are capable of providing. Among the many questions he addresses: Are congregations effective vehicles for providing broad-based social programs, or are they best at supporting their own members? How many local congregations have formal programs to assist needy families? How much money do such programs represent? How many specialized faith-based service agencies are there, and which are most effective? Are religious organizations promoting trust, love, and compassion? The answers that emerge demonstrate that American religion is helping needy families and that it is, more broadly, fostering civil society. Yet religion alone cannot save America from the broad problems it faces in providing social services to those who need them most. Elegantly written, Saving America? represents an authoritative and evenhanded benchmark of information for the current--and the coming--debate.
Category: Social Science

An Invitation To Social Theory

Author : David Inglis
ISBN : 9780745665870
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 37.78 MB
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Social theory is a crucial resource for the social sciences. It provides rich insights into how human beings think and act, and how contemporary social life is constructed. But often the key ideas of social theorists are expressed in highly technical and difficult language that can hide more than it reveals. Cutting through the often off-putting writing styles of social theorists, this book demonstrates exactly what social theory is about, clearly presenting the key themes of major social theory from the classical thinkers onwards. Areas covered include Marxism, structuralism, post-structuralism, phenomenology, symbolic interactionism, feminism and structuration theories. Wide-ranging in scope and coverage, the book is concise in presentation and free from jargon. Showing why social theory matters, and why it is of far-reaching social and political importance, the book is ideal for students across the social sciences seeking a clear, crisp mapping of a complex but very rewarding area.
Category: Social Science

The Decline Of The Secular University

Author : C. John Sommerville
ISBN : 0195306953
Genre : Education
File Size : 42.59 MB
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The American university has embraced a thorough secularism that makes it increasingly marginal in a society that is characterized by high levels of religious belief. The very secularization that was supposed to be a liberating influence has resulted in the university's failure to provide leadership in political, cultural, social, and even scientific arenas.In The Decline of the Secular University, C. John Sommerville explores several different ways in which the secular university fails in its mission through its trivialization of religion. He notes how little attention is being given to defining the human, so crucial in all aspects of professional education. He alerts us to problems associated with the prevailing secular distinction between "facts" and "values." He reviews how the elimination of religion hampers the university from understanding our post-Cold War world. Sommerville then shows how a greater awareness of the intellectual resources of religion might stimulate more forthright attention to important matters like our loss of a sense of history, how to problematize secularism, the issue of judging religions, the oddity of academic moralizing, and the strangeness of science at the frontiers.Finally, he invites the reader to imagine a university where religion is not ruled out but rather welcomed as a legitimate voice among others. Sommerville's bracing and provocative arguments are sure to provoke controversy and stimulate discussion both inside and outside the academy.
Category: Education