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The Selfhood of the Human Person Paperback

ISBN-13: 978-0813208657 ISBN-10: 0813208653

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--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 313 pages
  • Publisher: Catholic University of America Press (November 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0813208653
  • ISBN-13: 978-0813208657
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #331,381 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

This work is a serious philosophical study full of many rich insights that advance significantly our understanding of the human person. -- Norris Clarke, S.J., Fordham University --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Publisher

Crosby unfolds the mystery of personal uniqueness, shedding new light on the incommunicability and unrepeatability of each human person. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 11, 1998
Format: Paperback
While drawing on an extensive body of scholarship, Crosby's textured analysis of selfhood hews closely to lived experience. It is this experiential orientation that makes Crosby's work accessible to a non-philosophical audience. Crosby also provides an antidote to certain strains of personalist thinking that reduce the person to a "system of relationships." While giving transcendence and relatedness their due (especially in light of such moral phenomena as value response and obligation), Crosby takes pains to anchor relationality in a prior understanding of the person as a unique individual, characterized by self-possession and incommunicability.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Philip Blosser on March 21, 2004
Format: Hardcover
This book by a Catholic phenomenologist marks a milestone in philosophical anthropology. It is probably the most significant original contribution to the field in recent years, from the perspective of phenomenological personalism, to appear in the English language. No less important, it is clearly and accessibly written. Any reader who has languished through the iniquitous translation of Karol Wojtyla's THE ACTING PERSON, or who finds phenomenological approaches frequently impenetrable and mystifying, will be pleasantly surprised by the remarkable clarity and accessibility of Crosby's crisply-written and well-organized presentation. Crosby draws from phenomenology (Scheler, Wojtyla, Edith Stein, and his own mentor, von Hildebrand), personalist sources (Kierkegaard, Newman, Wojtyla again, and Josef Seifert), neo-Thomism (Maritain) and the philosophia perennis, combining many of the same sorts of perspectives one finds in Wojtyla. Readers of Crosby's painstaking phenomenological analysis of human "selfhood" may find portions of his discussion sufficiently penetrating and compelling to induce an eerie sense of having been conducted into the precincts of that profound, mysterious interiority called the "self" as if for the first time.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Aquinas on April 16, 2008
Format: Paperback
This is a brilliant essay on the human person following the personalist/phenomonological line of thought (a philosophical approach taken by our beloved pope John Paul II).

To do this book justive, a single reading does not suffice; it needs several readings, not because it is hard to follow - not at all! Crosby is very readable - I found it very comprehensible and I am not trained in philosophy.

No, it is simply because there is so much in this book; such as the role of immanence and transcendence in the human person - what does it mean to say that persons possess a kind of incommunicablity? When does a person become a person? Am I not a person if I am not conscious? (no!) Do I lose my personhood, if, for example, I go into a coma? (no!) Is an embryo a human person? (yes!) What is it about persons that make them unique or incommunicable? How does incommunicability tie in with man's social dimension? So, what is it that makes me a person? Is it "esse" or being, a concept that has been lost sight of since Descartes. Yes, but not in the narrow scholastic sense, a person is not simply defined by "esse" - I am getting out of my depth here! But, it seems to me it is precisely in the area of subjectivity that personalism has advanced our understanding of personhood.

Let me make some quotes to give the reader an insight into how good a book this is:

"is there in each person essential content that is beyond the distinction between universal form and concrete substance, so that the essential content is not just participated in but rather completely possessed by the person, possessing it in such a way so as to eliminate the possibilty of another person participating in the same essential content.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Michael L. Russo on August 26, 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Dr. Crosby is not easy to comprehend on the first read. There is a lot of value to what he says but it must be read slowly and reread for understanding unless you are already familiar with philosophy topics. This is not a book for the beginner.
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful By James L. Park on August 12, 2010
Format: Paperback
John F. Crosby
The Selfhood of the Human Person
(Washington, DC: Catholic University of America Press, 1996) 313 pages
(Library of Congress call number: BD450.C73 1996)

A professor of philosophy explores the meaning of personhood
within the Roman Catholic tradition.
Most of the characteristics of personhood he identifies
fall within the area of autonomy in
When is a Person? Pre-Persons and Former Persons by the present reviewer.

1. Persons belong to themselves; they cannot be owned by anyone else.
2. Persons are ends in themselves rather than means for others.
3. Persons have the power to transcend their environments,
which gives them freedom.
4. Persons are autonomous; they act for themselves,
using their own internal moral principles.
5. As individuals become more fully persons,
they cannot be replaced as easily
--as they can be as consumers, employees, or soldiers.
6. Persons are irreducibly subjective to themselves;
they know themselves from the inside as no one else will ever know them.
7. We continue to exist as persons in sleep
--as proven when we wake up as the same persons we were before.
Thus personhood does not depend on continuous consciousness.
Crosby wants to claim (therefore) that some 'substance' of personhood
is independent of consciousness.
But this seems far too metaphysical for this reader.

This book contributes to the growing literature on personhood,
as one person's intellectual struggle within a normally-rigid tradition.
In the background lurk the questions of abortion for fetuses,
merciful death for former persons,
and the possible existence of the 'soul' after death.

If you would like to explore similar efforts to define persons,
search the Internet for the following phrase:
"Personhood Bibliography".

James Leonard Park, medical ethicist
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