Date of Award

Spring 2007

Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Harrison, Stanley

Second Advisor

Prendergast, Thomas

Third Advisor

South, James


It is not possible to provide a layman's rendering of Peirce and Whitehead for all possible audiences within the short scope of this work. This work will take for granted some basic acquaintance with Peirce's and Whitehead's philosophy. Consequently, this is directed to the audience of Peircean and Whiteheadian students or, more generally, students of American philosophy. Second, chapters one through four in particular will take advantage of previous scholarship. l particularly note the work of Donna Orange in her PhD dissertation entitled "The Development of Peirce's Theism" (1980) and John Cobb's ''Whitehead's Doctrine of God," chapter four of his A Christian Natural Theology (1965). However, in both cases, I have felt the necessity to adapt their work for the focus of this work. Third, in the spirit of objective enquiry I want to briefly express my beginning perspectives. l come to this study through my interest in process philosophy and theology which began in the early 1990's after hearing a presentation by Robert Mesle (Professor at Graceland University and author of Process Theology: A Basic Introduction) on process thought and which led to the study of Whitehead at Claremont University in 1997 under the direction of David Griffin. It was evident in those Claremont classes that there were differences of opinion within the process camp between scholarship more closely aligned with either Whitehead or Hartshorne and their followers. Although my studies have kept me closer to Whitehead, this has not been any sort of devotion that ignores the conceptual flaws of his system. I worked for a religious institution for nineteen years. I am therefore, very interested in an understandable and plausible conception of God, which also keeps in balance a honest agnostic questioning. Whether this pursuit ultimately aligns me closer with Whitehead, Peirce, or someone else is of no matter.



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