Philosophy ETDs

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This is a study in the religious philosophy of the Canadian philosopher Charles Taylor. I focus in particular on the role of transcendence in his later writing on religion and secularity with the aim of contributing to a better understanding of his overall vision of the way out of the malaise of modernity, namely, his adumbration of a pluralistic solution, which I call "inclusive humanism" in contrast to both a narrow religious humanism on the one hand, and a narrow "exclusive" secular humanism on the other. Transcendence as transformation is the centerpiece of Taylor's hope for the moral and spiritual health of the late modern West, a civilization that he argues is struggling to maintain its commitment to a number of demanding universal moral standards in the face of dwindling resources for articulating continued affirmation or practical commitment. While Taylor believes that the Judeo-Christian tradition contains within itself the potential for renewal, his pluralist vision is open to the possibility of a new, inclusive humanism. The requisite transformation he envisions is modeled after religious conversion, but it is also clear that Taylor is open to non-religious possibilities.

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First Advisor

Goodman, Russell B.

Second Advisor

Thomson, Iain

First Committee Member (Chair)

Becker, Kelly

Second Committee Member

Gutowski, Piotr

Third Committee Member





Transcendence Secularity

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Available for download on Wednesday, May 16, 2018

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