Robert Lauder

Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



First Advisor

Beatrice Zedler

Second Advisor

Thomas Davitt

Third Advisor

Michael Murray

Fourth Advisor

Paul Byrne

Fifth Advisor

Mark Griesbach


The problem of this dissertation is to answer the question, "What is the meaning of person in George Holmes Howison's philosophy?" The statement of the problem in a simple question is deceptive if it creates the illusion that the question can be answered as simply as it is asked or the problem solved as easily as it is stated. Depending on the position a problem has in relation to a man's whole philosophical outlook, the solution of the problem will demand exposition of more or less of the man's philosophy. Our problem is central to Howison's philosophy. All of Howison's philosophy can be best understood in relation to his concept of person; without an understanding of his concept of person, none of his philosophy is comprehensible. Though Howison's concept of person might be indicated by extracting a description of person from one of Howison's writings, very little of his philosophy of person would be revealed by isolating such a description from the rest of his thought. To grasp Howison's concept of person is to see his notion of person as part of a whole, indeed as the core and center of all of his thinking. To see Howison's concept of person in relation to his philosophy of freedom, morality, death, immortality, eternity, God and community is to begin to grasp both the profundity and uniqueness of Howison's thinking.



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