Westminster: The Newman Press, 1956. First edition. Octavo, original mauve cloth, original dust jacket. Offsetting and early owner signature to front pastedown and flyleaf, small blemish to top rear panel of largely fresh and clean dust jacket. A near-fine copy. Item #520
"THE GREATEST ENGLISH EXPONENT OF THOMISM" First American edition of the English Jesuit's consideration of contemporary philosophical trends, published in the same year as the first British edition. Frederick Copleston was received into the Catholic Church in 1925 and subsequently entered the Society of Jesus in 1930. The book is a "collection of essays dealing with empiricism, analytic philosophy, and existentialism. The personalist and existentialist philosophies are treated sympathetically, with special emphasis on the existentialist concern with human freedom, interpersonal communication, and the problem of God." (George McLean). A brief Preface explains the origins of the material presented, followed by twelve chapters divided into two main sections. The first group addresses the influence of science and technology on contemporary British philosophy while the second group discusses post-war personalism and existentialism. Copleston taught at the Jesuit Heythrop College, becoming "the greatest English exponent of Thomism" (Joseph Pearce) in the last century. When this volume appeared Copleston was midway through the publishing of his magisterial History of Philosophy (1946-1966), where he expanded on his Thomist and Scholastic foundations to treat the logical development and interconnection of a broad range of philosophical systems. His summary of Western philosophy provided objective guidance to a generation of Catholic seminarians and university students. The American editions of volumes I, II, and III are advertised on the back panel of the dust jacket designed by Tony Madia. George McLean, An Annotated Bibliography of Philosophy in Catholic Thought, 1900-1964, 55. Approbations.