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November 30, 2018
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v2.1 Reference

The Human Person

A Beginner's Thomistic Psychology

The Human Person presents a brief introduction to the human mind, the soul, immortality, and free will. While delving into the thought of Thomas Aquinas, it addresses contemporary topics, such as skepticism, mechanism, animal language research, and determinism. Steven J. Jensen probes the primal questions of human nature. Are human beings free or determined? Is the capacity to reason distinctive to human beings or do animals also have some share of reason? Have animals really been taught to use language?

The Human Person touches on topics that bear upon the very fabric of the universe. Are human beings merely well-ordered collections of chemicals or do they have a soul that gives them life and understanding? Is there any element in human beings that survives death? Can human minds get in touch with the objective world or just forever dwell in the domain of their subjective experiences? The book closes by considering the most fundamental question of all: are human beings merely cosmic accidents with no purpose or is there some meaning to human life?

In this book, beginners of philosophy will learn the wonders of their own nature by studying Aquinas's thought on the human person.

About the Author

Steven J. Jensen is the author of Sin: A Thomistic Psychology; Knowing the Natural Law: From Precepts and Inclinations to Deriving Oughts; Living the Good Life: A Beginner's Thomistic Ethics and Good and Evil Actions: A Journey Through Saint Thomas Aquinas (all CUA Press).


"The Human Person: A Beginner's Thomistic Psychology, by University of St. Thomas, Houston professor Steven J. Jensen is such an invaluable text. In less than three-hundred pages Jensen effectively and accessibly introduces the most foundational concepts of Thomistic philosophical thought."—University Bookman

"This is an important book because it examines an important but complex topic and because it examines that topic in a manner accessible to any reader wishing to have a better understanding of what it is to be a human being. Steven Jensen is unafraid to tackle difficult topics, and his guidance through them is superb. As he recognizes, if we don't know the kind of being we are, we will almost certainly go desperately wrong in numerous ways. The Human Person provides a firm foundation and a protection against many of these errors."—Gary Atkinson, author of Our Search with Socrates for Moral Truth

"Steven Jensen has given us philosophy just as it ought to be: reflection grounded in a rich soil of everyday experience, which is expressed in ordinary language used with nuance and precision and which ascends by accurate reasoning to the noblest truths. The Human Person is a trustworthy trail guide for the path to self-knowledge."—Christopher Blum, The Augustine Institute

"Jensen's introduction to Thomistic psychology comes at a time when we must be reminded not only of who we are but of what we are. The Human Person does that with admirable clarity and erudition, not only by drawing on St. Thomas's profound teaching on human nature, but also by bringing it into fruitful dialogue with contemporary thought. It is a book that should find its way into the classroom and the library of everyone who cares to recover the truth about the human person in an age that has lost its moral bearings."—Giuseppe Butera, Providence College

"Presents Aquinas's account of the human person in an approachable, comprehensive, sound mannerthe scholarship is excellent, well grounded in Aquinas and well informed about the central contemporary disputes and how Aquinas's account would bear on these disputes helpfully."—Tom Cavanaugh, author of Hippocrates' Oath and Asclepius' Snake

The Catholic University of America Press


9780813231525 : the-human-person-jensen
Paperback / softback
296 Pages
$34.95 USD

Other Titles by Steven J. Jensen

Knowing the Natural Law

Steven Jensen
Feb 2020 - The Catholic University of America Press
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From Human Dignity to Natural Law

Richard Berquist, foreword by Steven J. Jensen
Oct 2019 - The Catholic University of America Press
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Steven J. Jensen
Jun 2018 - The Catholic University of America Press
$34.95 USD - Paperback / softback

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