Oxford University Press (2010)

Abstract
Wandering in Darkness reconciles the existence of an omniscient, omnipotent, perfectly good God with suffering in the world. Eleanore Stump presents the moral psychology and value theory within which the theodicy of Thomas Aquinas is embedded. She explicates Aquinas's account of the good for human beings, including the nature of love and union among persons, and then argues that some philosophical problems are best considered in the context of narratives. In the context of famous biblical stories and against the backdrop of Aquinas's other views, Stump argues that Aquinas's theodicy gives a powerful explanation for God's allowing suffering. This explanation constitutes a consistent and cogent defense for the problem of suffering.
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ISBN(s) 9780199277421   9780199659302   0199659303   0199277427
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Chapters BETA
Philosophy and Narrative

This chapter begins in earnest the examination of the methodology at issue in the book. In sympathy with certain criticisms raised recently by Bas van Fraassen, it argues that analytic philosophy as currently practiced has the vices of its virtues, but that these can be corrected for by in... see more

Narrative as a Means of Knowledge: Francis and Dominic

This chapter presents an argument for the claim that there are things to know that cannot be known as well or at all apart from narratives. For this purposes, the chapter uses hagiographical stories of the lives of St. Francis and St. Dominic, so that Francis and Dominic can serve as types... see more

Narrative and the Knowledge of Persons

On the basis of recent research in developmental psychology and neurobiology, this chapter explains the nature of the knowledge of persons and the second-person experience that enables the knowledge of persons. It examines some contemporary work on autism, joint attention, imitation, inclu... see more

The Story of Job: Suffering and the Second‐Personal

Job is an exemplar of an innocent person who suffers involuntarily. This chapter focuses on the biblical story of Job and gives a detailed philosophical examination of many parts of the story. Its aim is to illuminate the picture the story gives us of God's reasons for allowing Job's suffe... see more

The Story of Samson: Self‐Destroying Evil

Samson is an exemplar of a person who suffers greatly but whose suffering stems from his own wrongdoing. This chapter examines the problem of suffering as regards not the victims of human evil but as regards the perpetrators of it, whose own lives are wrecked in consequence of the evil the... see more

The Story of Abraham: The Desires of the Heart

Abraham is an exemplar of a person who suffers because of what he has set his heart on. This chapter examines the problem of suffering in connection with the loss or deprivation of the desires of the heart. It concentrates on the biblical story of Abraham and gives a detailed philosophical... see more

The Story of Mary of Bethany: Heartbrokenness and Shame

Mary of Bethany is an exemplar of a person who suffers shame and heartbreak, if the story of the raising of Lazarus, in which she and her sister Martha figure largely, is understood in a certain way. This chapter examines the problem of suffering in connection with shame, desires of the he... see more

Theodicy in Another World

This chapter uses the narratives in the preceding chapters as well as the worldview of Aquinas outlined in earlier chapters to present Aquinas's theodicy. Taken in the context of the biblical narratives and encompassed in Aquinas's whole worldview but especially his account of love, Aquina... see more

The Defense of the Defense: Suffering, Flourishing, and the Desires of the Heart

This chapter finishes the defence of the defence that is the object of the book by considering possible objections to the developed Thomistic theodicy and the evidence by which it can be supported. In particular, it discusses some results from psychological research on human reactions to t... see more

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Citations of this work BETA

Free Will.Timothy O'Connor & Christopher Evan Franklin - 2018 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
Do We Love For Reasons?Yongming Han - 2021 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 102 (1):106-126.
Epistemology Personalized.Matthew A. Benton - 2017 - Philosophical Quarterly 67 (269):813-834.
Knowledge of Things.Matt Duncan - 2020 - Synthese 197 (8):3559-3592.

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