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Michael Gorman
Catholic University of America
  1. The Essential and the Accidental.Michael Gorman - 2005 - Ratio 18 (3):276–289.
    The distinction between the essential and the accidental characteristics of a thing should be understood not in modal terms (the received view) nor in definitional terms (Fine’s recent proposal) but as follows: an essential characteristic of a thing is one that is not explained by any other of that thing’s characteristics, and an accidental characteristic of a thing is one that is so explained. Various versions of this proposal can be formulated.
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  2. Christ as Composite According to Aquinas.Michael Gorman - 2000 - Traditio 55:143-157.
    In this paper I explain Thomas Aquinas's view that Christ is a composite person, and then I explain the role of Christ's compositeness in Thomas‘s solutions to a range of Christological problems. On the topics I will be discussing, Thomas‘s views did not change significantly over the course of his career; for the sake of simplicity, then, I will focus on texts from the Summa theologiae, citing parallels in the notes.
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  3. Augustine’s Use of Neoplatonism in Confessions VII: A Response to Peter King.Michael Gorman - 2005 - Modern Schoolman 82 (3):227-233.
    A modified version of Michael Gorman's comments on Peter King’s paper at the 2004 Henle Conference. Above all, an account of Augustine’s purposes in discussing Neoplatonism in Confessions VII, showing why Augustine does not tell us certain things we wish he would. In my commentary I will address the following topics: (i) what it means to speak of the philosophically interesting points in Augustine; (ii) whether Confessions VII is really about the Trinity; (iii) Augustine‘s intentions in Confessions VII; (iv) King‘s (...)
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  4. Independence and Substance.Michael Gorman - 2006 - International Philosophical Quarterly 46 (2):147-159.
    The paper takes up a traditional view that has also been a part of some recent analytic metaphysics, namely, the view that substance is to be understood in terms of independence. Taking as my point of departure some recent remarks by Kit Fine, I propose reviving the Aristotelian-scholastic idea that the sense in which substances are independent is that they are non-inherent, and I do so by developing a broad notion of inherence that is more usable in the context of (...)
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  5. Hugh of Saint Victor.Michael Gorman - 2003 - In Noone Gracia (ed.), The Blackwell Companion to Philosophy in the Middle Ages. Blackwell.
    An overview of Hugh’s thought, focusing on philosophical issues. Specifically it gives a summary of his overall vision; the sources he worked from; his understanding of: the division of the science, biblical interpretation, God, creation, providence and evil, human nature and ethics, salvation; and his spiritual teachings.
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  6. Talking About Intentional Objects.Michael Gorman - 2006 - Dialectica 60 (2):135-144.
    Discusses the old problem of how to characterize apparently intentional states that appear to lack objects. In tandem with critically discussing a recent proposal by Tim Crane, I develop the line of reasoning according to which talking about intentional objects is really a way of talking about intentional states—in particular, it’s a way of talking about their satisfaction-conditions.
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  7. Incarnation.Michael Gorman - 2011 - In Brian Davies & Eleonore Stump (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Aquinas. Oxford University Press.
    According to Christian belief, Jesus Christ is a divine person who became “incarnate,” i.e., who became human. A key event in the second act of the drama of creation and redemption, the incarnation could not have failed to interest Aquinas, and he discusses it in a number of places. A proper understanding of what he thought about it is thus part of any complete understanding of his work. It is, furthermore, a window into his ideas on a variety of other (...)
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  8. Categories and Normativity.Michael Gorman - 2004 - In Sanford Gorman (ed.), Categories. The Catholic University of America Press.
    Anyone who tries to understand categories soon runs into the problem of giving an account of the unity of a category. Call this the “unity problem.” In this essay, I describe a distinctive and under-studied version of the unity problem and discuss how it might be solved. First, I describe various versions of the unity problem. Second, I focus on one version and argue that it is best dealt with by thinking of at least some categories as “norm-constituted,” in a (...)
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  9. On a Thomistic Worry About Scotus's Doctrine of the Esse Christi.Michael Gorman - 2009 - Antonianum 84:719-733.
    According to authoritative Christian teaching, Jesus Christ is a single person existing in two natures, divinity and humanity. In attempting to understand this claim, the high-scholastic theologians often asked whether there was more than one existence in Christ. John Duns Scotus answers the question with a clear and strongly-formulated yes, and Thomists have sometimes suspected that his answer leads in a heretical direction. But before we can ask whether Scotus‘s answer is acceptable or not, we have to come to a (...)
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  10. On Substantial Independence: A Reply to Patrick Toner.Michael Gorman - 2012 - Philosophical Studies 159 (2):293-297.
    Patrick Toner has recently criticized accounts of substance provided by Kit Fine, E. J. Lowe, and the author, accounts which say (to a first approximation) that substances cannot depend on things other than their own parts. On Toner’s analysis, the inclusion of this parts exception results in a disjunctive definition of substance rather than a unified account. In this paper (speaking only for myself, but in a way that would, I believe, support the other authors that Toner discusses), I first (...)
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  11.  94
    Questions Concerning the Existences of Christ.Michael Gorman - 2011 - In Friedman Emery (ed.), Philosophy and Theology in the Long Middle Ages: A Tribute to Stephen F. Brown. Brill.
    According to Christian doctrine as formulated by the Council of Chalcedon (451), Christ is one person (one supposit, one hypostasis) existing in two natures (two essences), human and divine. The human and divine natures are not merged into a third nature, nor are they separated from one another in such a way that the divine nature goes with one person, namely, the Word of God, and the human nature with another person, namely, Jesus of Nazareth. The two natures belong to (...)
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  12. Nagasawa Vs. Nagel: Omnipotence, Pseudo‐Tasks, and a Recent Discussion of Nagel's Doubts About Physicalism1.Michael Gorman - 2005 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 48 (5):436 – 447.
    In his recent "Thomas vs. Thomas: A New Approach to Nagel's Bat Argument", Yujin Nagasawa interprets Thomas Nagel as making a certain argument against physicalism and objects that this argument transgresses a principle, laid down by Thomas Aquinas, according to which inability to perform a pseudo-task does not count against an omnipotence claim. Taking Nagasawa's interpretation of Nagel for granted, I distinguish different kinds of omnipotence claims and different kinds of pseudo-tasks, and on that basis show that Nagasawa's criticism of (...)
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