By James V. Schall
"Pleads eloquently for the recovery of politicalphilosophy to the valuable place it as soon as occupied in ourtradition, and it demanding situations political philosophy itself toremain actual to its nature...".An attentive reader will getfrom this stimulating ebook clever guideline on what's worthfighting for and at the limits of the potential in politicalaction".
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Additional resources for At the Limits of Political Philosophy: From "Brilliant Errors" to Things of Uncommon Importance
Political science describes our lives in actual cities and guides actions and policies to achieve what men have chosen in common according to the ends of their actions. Political science seeks to understand and classify the regularities and norms of rule and citizenship that are found in existing but differing regimes. It assists us in achieving the ends of polities. Political science even describes the ends of disordered polities, as Aristotle explained in his own Politics. Political philosophy, in contrast, arises because of the questions 22 THE STAGES OF POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY that occur in actual cities, just as philosophy arises out of questions that remain perplexing in political philosophy.
Perceptive students notice the lack of a philosophic account of the meaning of the experience of politics and how this experience relates to their particular lives, more especially to their understanding of what is. The practice of political philosophy requires the experience of having read the classical authors to assist in examining the central problems of political living. Through political philosophy one can sort out relevant principles and criteria and can arrive at judg1. Boswell's Lift ofJohnson (London: Oxford, 1931), I, p.
St. Thomas knew the questions and the proposed answers both from reason and from revelation. St. Thomas did not replace revelation with reason. Nor did he understand revelation as a kind of detailed law. Rather he demonstrated that what revelation presented in its own terms and its own manner did respond to questions that were legitimately asked by the philosophers. The vocation of the philosopher and the excitement of this vocation remained for St. Thomas. For him, there were not two truths, but there was an order with different sources for the same truth.