Date of Award

Fall 2005

Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Copeland, M. S.

Second Advisor

Tallon, Andrew

Third Advisor

Carey, Patrick


The aim of this dissertation is to investigate the arguably radical claim made by John Paul II in his 1981 encyclical Laborem Exercens that human work is the key to the social question. My interest is in unpacking the meaning of this statement through an analysis of the underlying anthropological framework presupposed by John Paul and grounded in his work as the philosopher Karol Wojtyla. I will then question the adequacy of that framework by comparing it to the anthropology of Bernard Lonergan. My intention is to determine which understanding of the human person in the act of self-transcendence provides a more adequate basis for John Paul's clajm, and which allows for a more comprehensive grasp of the role that human work may play in living a Christian life.



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