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Gathering Interest
Moral Theologians Collection (10 vols.)
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Overview

The Moral Theologians Collection contains 10 texts on prominent and lesser-known moral theologians who have significantly impacted the field of moral theology. These texts draw heavily from the writings and teachings of these theologians to reveal their contemporary applications. The collection explores the theology of Pope John Paul II, Josef Fuchs, John Cuthbert Ford, Ignacio Ellacuría, H. Richard Niebuhr, and others.

The Moral Traditions Series by Georgetown University Press places contemporary moral issues in conversation with theologians to engage the church with the world. The texts included in this collection explore the moral traditions of the church and bring historical views into new light. The Logos edition of the Moral Traditions Series is comprised of five collections: Moral Perspectives on Feminism (3 vols.), Moral Perspectives on Sex, Family, and Bioethics (7 vols.), Fundamental Issues in Moral Theology (17 vols.), Moral Theologians Collection (10 vols.), and Moral Perspectives on Society and Politics (11 vols.).

In the Logos editions, these valuable volumes are enhanced by amazing functionality. Scripture citations link directly to English translations, and important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your digital library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. Take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.

Save 20% on the complete Moral Traditions Series when you order the Georgetown University Press Moral Traditions Series Bundle (48 vols.). Get more resources and more savings when you bundle.

Key Features

  • Examines significant moral theologians
  • Provides an overview of the history of moral theology
  • Applies moral theologies of the past to contemporary contexts

Individual Titles

American Protestant Ethics and the Legacy of H. Richard Niebuhr

  • Author: William Werpehowski
  • Series Editor: James F. Keenan
  • Series: Moral Traditions Series
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press
  • Publication Date: 2002
  • Pages: 272

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5| 6 | 7

In this careful analysis and evaluation of the monumental influence of Niebuhr, Werpehowski traces four streams of thought flowing from Niebuhr’s theology, particularly in relation to ethics. In a tightly knit and comprehensive investigation of the work of four contemporary ethicists, important in their own right—Paul Ramsey, Stanley Hauerwas, James Gustafson, and Kathryn Tanner—Werpehowski explores how the legacy of Niebuhr has impacted their thought and work. He presents a concise analytical criticism of the development of the four ethicist’s construction of ethics in a way that interweaves and puts the four into a dialogue and conversation with Niebuhr and each other.

[A] carefully written and wide-ranging work . . . A great strength of this book is that Werpehowski reads the figures he takes up fairly and insightfully. His interpretations challenge a number of entrenched exegetical stereotypes.

Theology Today

Superior scholarship . . . Perfect for upper-level undergraduate courses on twentieth-century Christian ethics.

—Gilbert Meilaender, author of The Theory and Practice of Virtue and Working: Its Meaning and Its Limits

A scholarly, well-written book involving insightful analysis and perceptive criticism.

—Charles E. Curran, Elizabeth Scurlock University Professor of Human Values, Southern Methodist University

William Werpehowski is a professor in the theology and religious studies department at Villanova University and the director of the Center for Peace and Justice Education. He is the coeditor of The Love Commandments: Essays in Christian Ethics and Moral Philosophy and The Essential Paul Ramsey: A Collection.

Catholic Moral Theology in the United States: A History

  • Author: Charles E. Curran
  • Series Editor: James F. Keenan
  • Series: Moral Traditions Series
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press
  • Publication Date: 2008
  • Pages: 368

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5| 6 | 7

In this magisterial volume Charles E. Curran surveys the historical development of Catholic moral theology in the United States from its 19th century roots to the present day. His perspective is unique: for nearly 50 years, he has been a major influence on the development of the field and has witnessed first-hand the dramatic increase in the number and diversity of moral theologians in the academy and the Church. No one is more qualified to write this first and only comprehensive history of Catholic moral theology in the United States.

Winner of the 2009 First Place Award for Best Book in History in the Catholic Press Association Book Awards

Winner of the 2008 American Publishers Award for Professional and Scholarly Excellence in Theology and Religion

This book and Curran’s work generously deserve the attention of all those Catholics who believe that history matters, and that the church finds its mission in that essential framework given its best expression in Vatican II’s ‘Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World.’ As many have turned away from the promise of the council, Curran has done as much as any American Catholic to keep hope alive.

National Catholic Reporter

Curran covers a tremendous amount of ground in these chapters, over complex and controversial territory . . . [H]e is to be given high marks for the way he summarizes carefully and fairly the theological arguments with which he has disagreed . . . I am grateful for Curran’s scholarly work in this book. As a ‘participant observer,’ Charles Curran has chronicled history fairly and clearly—no small accomplishment for someone whose own voice has been such an important part of the story.

America

The book is a wonderful gift to the church that could come only from one so deeply involved in the very development of the field as both a careful observer of events but also as one of the most significant moral theologians of our time.

Conscience

The sheer breadth of this historical survey of Catholic moral theology in the United States would be daunting to any theologian except Curran, whose synthetic mind and critical grasp of the discipline make possible a succinct analysis of key figures as well as newer scholars.

Religious Studies Review

This volume needs to be in every university and college library. Nothing compares to the breadth and depth of this historical study of United States moral theology. Any who teach in the discipline of theology need to read the book, even if their specialty is not moral theology.

Horizons

This is a highly readable account, written by an expert, and is suitable for undergraduates and the general reader.

Theological Book Review

Charles E. Curran is the Elizabeth Scurlock University Professor of Human Values at Southern Methodist University. He has served as president of three national societies: the American Theological Society, the Catholic Theological Society of America, and the Society of Christian Ethics. He has written or edited more than forty books, including The Origins of Moral Theology in the United States.

John Cuthbert Ford, SJ: Moral Theologian at the End of the Manualist Era

  • Author: Eric Marcelo O. Genilo, SJ
  • Series Editor: James F. Keenan
  • Series: Moral Traditions Series
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press
  • Publication Date: 2007
  • Pages: 240

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5| 6 | 7

Ford is best known for his influential contribution to Catholic teachings on three moral issues. His objection to the Allied practice of obliteration bombing during World War II by drawing a sharp distinction between combatants and noncombatants is still widely studied today. Ford campaigned for alcohol education for both clergy and laity and introduced a pastoral approach for assisting and counseling alcoholics. As a member of the Papal Commission on Population, Family, and Birth Rate during the 1960s, Ford was an unyielding defender of the traditional Catholic teaching on birth control that still reigns today. Eric Genilo leaves the reader with an in-depth portrait of an extraordinary man who dedicated his life to defending the Church and protecting society’s most vulnerable members.

Honorable Mention for the 2008 Book Award for a First Time Author of a Book at the Catholic Press Association Book Awards

John C. Ford, SJ, played a leading role in Catholic moral theology for over thirty years beginning in the late 1930s. Now, thanks to Eric Marcelo O. Genilo, contemporary moral theologians have a judicious, perceptive, in-depth, and balanced critical evaluation of Ford’s work.

—Charles E. Curran, Elizabeth Scurlock University Professor of Human Values, Southern Methodist University

Genilo offers students of Catholic moral theology a sharp diagnosis of the complex mind and method of John Ford as well as a rich survey of the strengths and weaknesses of the larger moral tradition in which he operated . . .

Theological Studies

This work is significant contribution to the history of moral theology. The author has accessed the writings of his chosen subject and has examined them judiciously . . . this book should be required reading for any course in the history of moral theology.

Catholic Historical Review

This is one of the better intellectual histories of one of the major forces in Catholic theology of the twentieth century; a man who set the stage for contemporary moral discourse.

Catholic Library World

Eric Marcelo O. Genilo, SJ, is an assistant professor of moral theology in the Loyola School of Theology at Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines.

John Paul II and the Legacy of Dinitatis Humanae

  • Author: Hermínio Rico, SJ
  • Series Editor: James F. Keenan
  • Series: Moral Traditions Series
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press
  • Publication Date: 2002
  • Pages: 288

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5| 6 | 7

It was by far the most controversial document to emerge from Vatican II—Dignitatis Humanae, or the Declaration on Religious Freedom. Drafted largely by prominent Jesuit theologian John Courtney Murray, it represented a departure from previous Catholic teachings in that it accepted the separation between Church and State and declared religious freedom a fundamental human right. In doing this, it set forth guidelines for the role of the Catholic Church in liberal, secular, and pluralistic societies.

Nearly four decades later, Hermínio Rico examines the continued relevance of this declaration in today’s world, comparing its most paradigmatic interpretations, and proposing a reconsideration of its import for contemporary church-society relationships. He offers a detailed analysis of how Pope John Paul II has appropriated, interpreted, and developed the main themes of the document, and how he has applied them to such contentious modern issues as the fall of c and the rise of secular pluralism. In addition, Rico sets forth his own vision of the future of Dignitatis Humanae, and how the profound themes of the declaration can be applied in years to come to help the church find a way to engage effectively with, and within, pluralistic societies.

Rico has made an important and timely contribution to the issue of religious freedom in general and to the understanding of Vatican II’s Dignitatis Humanae in particular.

Theological Studies

Scholars interested in contemporary Catholic thought on religious freedom and the intellectual contribution of John Courtney Murray will profit greatly from this explanation.

Journal of Religion

A most insightful study . . . Rico’s extremely well researched work helps us think more fruitfully about the significance and ethical implications of pivotal developments for our increasingly pluralistic church and world.

—Thomas Massaro, SJ, professor of moral theology, Jesuit School of Theology in Berkeley, Santa Clara University

Hermínio Rico, SJ, is the editor of the Jesuit cultural monthly journal Brotéria—Cristianismo e Cultura, and a guest lecturer at the Faculdade de Teologia, Universidade Católica Portuguesa, Lisbon.

Josef Fuchs on Natural Law

  • Author: Mark Graham
  • Series Editor: James F. Keenan
  • Series: Moral Traditions Series
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press
  • Publication Date: 2002
  • Pages: 282

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5| 6 | 7

Appointed by Pope John XXIII to the Pontifical Commission on Population, Family, and Birth, Fuchs ultimately found himself disappointed in his three years of service and spent the next thirty years exploring a broad array of issues pivotal to a reconstruction of Roman Catholic natural law theory. This is the first full-length analysis of Fuchs’ efforts.

. . . a very enlightening analysis of the intellectual development of one of the most influential Catholic moral theologians in the last half of the twentieth century.

Theology Today

All persons interested in understanding the dramatic developments in Roman Catholic moral theology during the twentieth century owe a great debt to Mark Graham. [He] has produced an impressive work of theological scholarship. It is an important book in its own right and will serve to keep the legacy of Josef Fuchs alive to all persons engaged in Christian ethical reflection.

Journal of Religion

Mark Graham is an assistant professor of theology and religious studies at Villanova University.

Loyal Dissent: Memoir of a Catholic Theologian

  • Author: Charles E. Curran
  • Series Editor: James F. Keenan
  • Series: Moral Traditions Series
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press
  • Publication Date: 2006
  • Pages: 314

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5| 6 | 7

Loyal Dissent is the candid and inspiring story of a Catholic priest and theologian who, despite being stripped of his right to teach as a Catholic theologian by the Vatican, remains committed to the Catholic Church. Over a nearly fifty-year career, Charles E. Curran has distinguished himself as the most well-known and the most controversial Catholic moral theologian in the United States. On occasion, he has disagreed with official church teachings on subjects such as contraception, homosexuality, divorce, abortion, moral norms, and the role played by the hierarchical teaching office in moral matters. Throughout, however, Curran has remained a committed Catholic, a priest working for the reform of a pilgrim church. His positions, he insists, are always in accord with the best understanding of Catholic theology and always dedicated to the good of the church.

In this poignant and passionate memoir, Curran recounts his remarkable story from his early years as a compliant, pre-Vatican II Catholic through decades of teaching and writing and a transformation that has brought him today to be recognized as a leader of progressive Catholicism throughout the world.

Winner of the 2007 First Place Award for Best Biography at the Catholic Press Association Book Awards

An inspiration. It is the story of a man totally dedicated to his vocation as theologian and priest, one who was treated harshly and unjustly and harbors no slightest touch of bitterness . . . His book is entertaining, enlightening, challenging and hope-filled.

Doctrine & Life

Readers here encounter both an autobiographical work and a reflective memoir chronicling Curran’s evolving moral reasoning. He adroitly confronts established moral tenets with the brilliance of a scholar and the sensitivity of a seasoned pastor.

Library Journal

As this newly released memoir recounts, at a relatively young age Curran became, by choice and circumstance, the most infamous American Catholic theologian of his time.

America

Engrossing, enlightening, salted with humor, poignant, and profoundly inspiring, this memoir recounts the journey of one of the leading theologians of the Catholic Church in this country. Curran has been at the center of historic events. His own account of things, especially the gracious charity with which he views opponents, is stunning. His stories of personal, intellectual, and spiritual choices are linked, quite unselfconsciously, with the mantra ‘for truth and for the good of the church.’ To borrow the title of a best-selling book, this is a heartbreaking work of staggering genius—not just human talent, but the genius of a faith-filled life. A powerful read for anyone who is active in the church today.

Elizabeth A. Johnson, CSJ, distinguished professor of theology, Fordham University

Charles E. Curran is the Elizabeth Scurlock University Professor of Human Values at Southern Methodist University. He has served as president of three national societies: the American Theological Society, the Catholic Theological Society of America, and the Society of Christian Ethics. He has written or edited more than forty books, including The Origins of Moral Theology in the United States.

Overcoming Our Evil: Human Nature and Spiritual Exercises in Xunzi and Augustine

  • Author: Aaron Stalnaker
  • Series Editor: James F. Keenan
  • Series: Moral Traditions Series
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Pages: 352

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5| 6 | 7

Overcoming Our Evil examines and compares the thought and practice of the early Christian Augustine of Hippo, and the early Confucian Xunzi. Both have sophisticated and insightful accounts of spiritual exercises, and both make such ethical work central to their religious thought and practice. Yet to understand the two thinkers’ recommendations for cultivating virtue we must first understand some important differences. Aaron Stalnaker disentangles the competing aspects of Augustine and Xunxi’s ideas of “human nature.” His groundbreaking comparison of their ethical vocabularies also drives a substantive analysis of fundamental issues in moral psychology, especially regarding emotion and the complex idea of “the will,” to examine how our dispositions to feel, think, and act might be slowly transformed over time. The comparison meticulously constructs vivid portraits of both thinkers demonstrating where they connect and where they diverge, making the case that both have been misunderstood and misinterpreted. By shedding light on these seemingly disparate ancient figures in unexpected ways, Stalnaker redirects recent debate regarding practices of personal formation, and exposes the intellectual and political issues involved in the retrieval of “classic” ethical sources in diverse contemporary societies, illuminating a path toward a contemporary understanding of difference.

Honorable Mention for the 2007 Book by a First Time Author Award at the Catholic Press Association Book Awards

This is an essential volume for scholars, students, and academic libraries.

Religious Studies Review

Anyone concerned with moral psychology, moral education, or virtue ethics will find a great deal in Overcoming Our Evil.

Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy

This intellectually inspiring and conceptually uplifting study takes comparative studies to a higher level by providing an intriguing and effective model of inquiry. It fosters a healthy search for and meaningful understanding of diversity of thinking across cultures. Astonishingly varied information and insight capture the reader’s attention and mind, offering numerous and valuable aids to grasping various terms, concepts, and themes in the study of Chinese and Western philosophy. A clear and penetrating writing style also elevates the significance of this work. The book is not merely an intellectual delight to read, but it is also a master work that may serve as a durable scholarly resource, to which one may return time and again for edification and inspiration.

Journal of Chinese Philosophy

Aaron Stalnaker is an associate professor in the Department of Religious Studies at Indiana University. He was awarded his PhD in religious studies from Brown University in 2001. From July 1992 through June 1994 he worked with Volunteers in Asia in the Peoples Republic of China, where he taught English at a technical college in Manchuria.

The Ground Beneath the Cross: The Theology of Ignacio Ellacuría

  • Author: Kevin F. Burke, SJ
  • Series Editor: James F. Keenan
  • Series: Moral Traditions Series
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press
  • Publication Date: 2004
  • Pages: 264

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5| 6 | 7

Ignacio Ellacuría’s writings directly address one of the most vexing issues in theology today: can theologians account for the demands arising from both the particularity of their various social-historical situations and also the universal claims of Christian revelation? Kevin F. Burke provides the first comprehensive analysis of Ellacuría’s thoughts and explains how this inspiring martyr based his theology in a philosophy of historical reality—the “ground beneath the cross”—and interprets the suffering of “the crucified peoples” in the light of Jesus’ crucifixion. Ellacuría thus inserts the theological realities of salvation and transcendence squarely within the course of human events, and he connects these to the Christian mandate to “take the crucified peoples down from their crosses.”

Placing Ellacuría’s thought in the context of historical trends within the Roman Catholic Church, particularly Vatican II and the rise of liberation theology in Latin America, Burke argues that Ellacuría makes a distinctive contribution to contemporary Catholic theology.

A fine comprehensive introduction to the theology of Ignacio Ellacuría . . . richly rewarding.

Theological Studies

The Ground Beneath the Cross is a densely, if carefully, argued and learned book. It should stand the test of time as the standard exposition, in English, of the theology of Ignacio Ellacuría.

Journal of Hispanic-Latino Theology

As Burke’s fine book shows us, Ellacuría demonstrates the continuing promise of liberation theology, and the price of living out its consequences.

—Dean Brackley, SJ, author of Divine Revolution: Salvation and Liberation in Catholic Thought

An outstanding contribution . . . rightfully places Ellacuría as one of the major Christian theologians of the twentieth century.

—Maria Pilar Aquino, associate professor of theology and religious studies, University of San Diego

Kevin F. Burke, SJ is acting president and associate professor of systematic theology at the Weston Jesuit School of Theology at Berkeley.

The Moral Theology of Pope John Paul II

  • Author: Charles E. Curran
  • Series Editor: James F. Keenan
  • Series: Moral Traditions Series
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press
  • Publication Date: 2005
  • Pages: 280

Sample Pages: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5| 6 | 7

Pope John Paul II is the second longest serving pope in history and the longest serving pope of the last century. His presence has thrown a long shadow across our time, and his influence on Catholics and non-Catholics throughout the world is undeniable. Much has been written about this pope, but until now, no one has provided a systematic and thorough analysis of the moral theology that underlies his moral teachings and its astonishing influence. And no one is better positioned to do this than Charles E. Curran, widely recognized as the leading American Catholic moral theologian.

While finding much to admire, Curran is nonetheless fiercely precise in his analysis and rigorously thoughtful in his criticism of much of the methodological aspects of the pope’s moral theology as he examines the pope’ use of scripture, tradition, and previous hierarchical teaching, as well as theological aspects including Christology, eschatology, and the validity of human sources of moral wisdom and knowledge, his use of anthropology, the ethical model, and natural law. Brilliantly constructed and fearlessly argued, this will be the definitive measure of Pope John Paul II’s moral theology for years to come.

Winner of the 2006 Second Place Award for Oustanding Theology Books at the Catholic Press Association Book Awards

A must for American Catholic intellectuals who care about authentic Catholic conversation around what we most deeply value in our tradition.

Horizons

Curran draws on a wealth of knowledge and experience to evaluate John Paul II’s work. He covers complex matters in his distinctive clear and direct style. For all who want a serious, critical analysis in relation to Catholic social tradition and the development of moral theology, this treatment is unsurpassed.

—Lisa Sowle Cahill, J. Donald Monan Professor of Theology, Boston College

No one serious about understanding Catholic social teaching can ignore this work.

—John T. Pawlikowski, professor of social ethics, Catholic Theological Union

A penetrating analysis of the moral theology of one of the dominant religious leaders of our time by one of contemporary Catholicism’s most respected thinkers. Catholics and non-Catholics alike will be impressed by Fr. Curran’s insights and criticisms and by the fair-minded and gracious spirit in which he offers them.

—J. Philip Wogaman

I know of no book that examines so skillfully and carefully the theological and ethical method the pope utilizes in formulating his moral teaching.

Kenneth R. Himes, chair, department of theology, Boston College

Charles E. Curran is the Elizabeth Scurlock University Professor of Human Values at Southern Methodist University. He has served as president of three national societies: the American Theological Society, the Catholic Theological Society of America, and the Society of Christian Ethics. He has written or edited more than forty books, including The Origins of Moral Theology in the United States.

The Origins of Moral Theology in the United States: Three Different Approaches

  • Author: Charles E. Curran
  • Series Editor: James F. Keenan
  • Series: Moral Traditions Series
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press
  • Publication Date: 1997
  • Pages: 336

Charles E. Curran presents the first in-depth analysis of nineteenth-century Catholic moral theology in the United States, focusing on three significant figures—Aloysius Sabetti, Thomas J. Bouquillon, and John B. Hogan—and demonstrating that methodological pluralism and theological diversity existed in the Church even then.

So little attention has been paid to the development of moral theology in this country that these authors are unknown to many scholars. Curran’s book corrects this oversight and proposes that the ferment revealed in their writings offers important lessons for contemporary Catholic moral theology. The Origins of Moral Theology in the United States describes how all three men dealt in different ways with the increasing role of authoritative teachings in moral theology from the Vatican. He also shows how they reflected their American context and the views of their own time on women and sexuality.

A significant contribution to our understanding of the development of both moral theology and modern Roman Catholicism.

Journal of Ecclesiastical History

Charles E. Curran is the Elizabeth Scurlock University Professor of Human Values at Southern Methodist University. He has served as president of three national societies: the American Theological Society, the Catholic Theological Society of America, and the Society of Christian Ethics. He has written or edited more than forty books, including The Origins of Moral Theology in the United States.

Product Details

  • Title: Moral Theologians Collection
  • Series Editor: James F. Keenan
  • Series: Moral Traditions Series
  • Publisher: Georgetown University Press
  • Volumes: 10
  • Pages: 2,996

About James F. Keenan

James F. Keenan has been a Jesuit of the New York Province since 1970 and an ordained priest since 1982. He is a member of the board of directors for the Catholic Theological Society of America, a fellow of the Institute for Advanced Studies in Humanities at the University of Edinburgh, and a fellow of the Center of Theological Inquiry at Princeton. He has published numerous articles in scholarly journals including Theological Studies, Journal of Moral Theology, and the Asian Christian Review. His published books include The Ethics of the Word: Voices in the Catholic Church Today, Moral Wisdom: Lessons and Texts from the Catholic Tradition, and Goodness and Rightness in Thomas Aquinas’s Summa Theologiae.