Pontificia Università della Santa Croce
Recent publications
The recent racial attacks that took the lives of several African-Americans in the USA have unleashed a whole social movement in defence of the rights of minorities who face discrimination. What began as a plea in favour of the black population has become a convulsive current throughout America, seeking to cleanse its history by disassociating it from its founding sins, which include slavery, but above all, colonization as a whole. This amalgam of revisionist and vindictive currents has awakened a new culture. The Woke movement has initiated the battle for the narrative: they cancel any tendency contrary to their principles, silence freedom of expression and tear down any statue that represents any symbol of oppression or authority, Christopher Columbus at the head. These are the premises of post-modern society: wounded by the culture of victimisation, it promotes ideological tribalism that destroys the truth. We are witnessing a phenomenon that seeks to deconstruct history, resignify the present and depersonalise the future. The black legend resurfaces with new force and America runs the risk of blurring its identity traits. Listening to the voices of experts is essential in order to interpret the shadows of a legacy in the light of truth, which shows us the deep richness of a common culture.
From the point of view of institutional communication, the Second Vatican Council can be considered the most significant media event of the 20th century organized by an institution. This was so because of its duration, impact on millions of people, and the media interest it generated. For the Catholic Church, the management of the official information of this Assembly was an undertaking of enormous proportions, involving complex challenges. This article provides an overview of how the Vatican II information services dealt with such challenges.
The year 2022 will be remembered for the outbreak of war in Ukraine, a conflict that shattered the incipient optimism caused by the gradual disappearance of the Covid pandemic. Alongside the succession of news about the war and the Pope’s appeals for peace, the media echoed other important events in the life of the Church. In these pages we offer a selection of the most significant ones. Obviously, this is a choice based on the author’s criteria, which include the persistence of the news throughout the year.
Justice is known to be an emblematic legal-philosophical criterion that forms part of the evaluative point of law for several prominent authors (such as Robert Alexy and Gustav Radbruch) who advocate that the nature of law is dual, namely, that law has at the same time an evaluative and descriptive nature. John Finnis, a proponent of a contemporary natural-law theory of law who supports a maximalist or full-range approach regarding the aspects of human good, acknowledges the legal importance of the requirement for justice. However, Finnis seems to conceptualize justice as a subset of what he deems the main evaluative standard within the nature of law—practical reasonableness. In this article, I argue that Finnis’s account of law and justice may be fruitfully upgraded by an emphasis on Thomas Aquinas’s texts that highlight the virtue of justice and its object, the juridical phenomenon (ius), as the central evaluative standard and the ideal end of positive law. I also show how a greater emphasis on justice is ultimately compatible with the role of practical reasonableness in explaining the nature of law.
In this article I wish to shed light on the meaning of work, which contributes to a deep understanding of ourselves, our identity, our dignity, and our desire for happiness, by specifying some intrinsic virtues: industriousness, professionalism (both technical and moral), and the spirit of service. Two opposing interpretations are to be avoided: the merely functional, minimalist interpretation (Aristotelian in origin); and the emphatic, excessive interpretation of ‘workism’ (connected to the scientific revolution and scientism, as human dominance over nature through work). In the conclusion, I instead emphasize Aristotle, pointing out that, in work, all three dynamic dimensions of the human being that he theorized are included: alongside the productive dimension (poiesis), we in fact find the moral dimension (praxis) and the speculative dimension (theoria), which Aristotle (but not his successors) believed were implicated in every activity. This makes it possible to highlight the multifaceted semantics of work. I anticipate that I will often turn to fiction and to the extreme experiences of the gulags and concentration camps to make this essay more compelling.
The importance of the Bible from the literary point of view is evident. It has had and continues to have a great influence on literary works, not only as a culturally significant religious text, but also as a literary work of merit in its own right. This article reflects on the extent to which this well-known feature of the Bible might be relevant to the work of a theologian who receives it as a sacred text. First of all, a review is made of the reception of the literary dimension of the Bible throughout history. For various reasons this dimension has tended to be historically underestimated but, at the same time, it was usually admitted that ignoring it was tantamount to compromising the very functionality of the biblical text. There follows a theoretical reflection on the role of literary language in two important areas for theology: the communication of spiritual experience and the representation of history. Finally, a possible classification of biblical contents is proposed according to their literary characteristics and the conditions they establish from the point of view of communication.
In this interview we will explore García-Noblejas’ thought on public communication, which is deeply marked by his interpretation of Aristotle’s Poetics and influenced by some contemporary thinkers. For García-Noblejas, communication is a service and a form of practical knowledge with five dimensions: ethics, politics, rhetoric, aesthetics, and poetics. Poetics is the most important of these, since its symbolic perspective of the representation of human actions allows us to deeply understand the narrative and dramatic texts typical of journalism, advertising, and propaganda, as well as written and audiovisual fiction. Poetics is the art of creating “possible worlds” in which the reader/spectator recognizes himself (or herself) and with which he dialogues starting from his own identity. García-Noblejas defends public communication that is based on the gift of self and looks to community fruitfulness. He also discusses some frequent pathologies in the media. Finally, he proposes his theory of the Second Navigation to discern the meaning of a text and explains why it is necessary to give a transcendent meaning to the Aristotelian concept of catharsis.
The paper summarises recent findings and theory about the application of embodied language to (so-called) abstract concepts and words and applies this to the issues of beliefs.
How can a reality whose subsistence is only digital and whose existence is only online have ontological consistency? Yet experience shows how the pervasiveness of communication in human life today and the new possibilities of data analysis, made possible by AI, open up real and crucial ethical questions, in the etymological sense of crux. This, in fact, is tied to a “judgement”, through the Greek term krisis from which the words “crisis” and “critical” descend. A crux represents an interpretative passage in which the attribution of meaning is difficult, if not impossible. And this concerns not only philological investigations, but also every “critical” reading of reality. These ethical challenges call into question, at the same time, metaphysics, anthropology and even theology, through the question of what reality can be recognized in virtual relations, and what epistemological criteria, consequently, are required for a conscious manipulation of big data. AI and social media to actually work and make a profit from human relationships, which are the real product at stake. But to whom does a relationship belong? Who can own symbols and language? The point of access to such questions is the symbolic, anthropological and metaphysical bearing of the relationships themselves.
A correct understanding of Hart’s idea of justice and a detailed assessment of the connection between justice and law contributes to a better understanding of his legal-philosophical project. Always consistent with his argument on the separability between law and morality, Hart endorses an account of formal intralegal justice that is intimately connected to law, but not necessarily dependent upon non-legal principles of substantive justice. Hart’s theoretical commitment to a composite concept of formal justice encompasses two elements: first, the imperative to treat like cases alike and different cases differently, and second, the underlying legal criteria that specify the relevant measure of likeness and difference. These elements of Hart’s theory of justice can be traced back to their doctrinal precedents in the texts of Aristotle, Sidgwick, Perelman, Ross, and Del Vecchio. Commentators and critics of Hart’s account of justice seem to agree that this account ought to be expanded by exploring its full effects on the foundations of Hart’s concept of law. When this is achieved, a third element of Hart’s intralegal justice emerges, namely, its rights-allocating function, which is deeply embedded in his account of the rule of recognition, his concept of a legal system, and his idea of law.
This paper focuses on one specific theological tool regarding some Christian ritual practices, i.e., the character indelebilis or indelible mark. Though the notion existed in some patristic sources, the theologoumenon was reframed in early scholasticism. Theologians of the 12th–13th century used the restricted code of Aristotelian psychology in order to better control theological predication and moved from baptismal theology to the theology of priesthood. Since Thomas Aquinas is the main theological reference in the development of the theologoumenon, special attention will be paid to his proposal. Revisiting the metaphorical nature of some of his statements and the iconic value he assigns to the indelible mark may contribute to a better understanding of the current theological debate.
In our present cultural situation, we observe a growing expansion of information together with a proliferation of opinions and interpretations. This situation has been intensified by the health emergency caused by the Covid-19 virus. Our study aims to provide the keys for the formation of personal judgment in the practical field, so that it can indirectly serve as guidance for the management of information related to the pandemic. We will attempt to illustrate, first, the specificity of practical knowledge, describing its sources and conditions, as well as the scope of practical truth, which such judgment allows us to reach. Secondly, we will point out the factors that positively and negatively influence personal judgment. On the one hand, we will indicate some external elements that hinder or prevent access to information, such as misinformation, disinformation and fake news. On the other hand, we will focus on the internal dispositions of practical judgment, particularly the intellectual and moral virtues. In this context, we will deal in greater detail with prudence as a dianoetic virtue. We will conclude by pointing out the importance of the virtues in achieving critical thinking, and the importance of critical thinking in building stable access to information.
This case study focuses on the pastoral and communicative activity of priests from nine Roman Catholic dioceses during the first wave of Covid-19, i.e. from the beginning of the pandemic to approximately June 2020. The dioceses belong to all continents: two are in North America (Saint Augustine, USA, and Ciudad Victoria, Mexico); two in Africa (Isiro-Niangara, Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Owerri, Nigeria); two in Europe (Valencia, Spain, and Tempio-Ampurias, Italy); and one each in South America (Duitama-Sogamoso, Colombia), Oceania (Parramatta, Australia), and Asia (Seoul, South Korea). A quantitative methodology was employed through a questionnaire-survey distributed to the clergy of these diocese, with the goal of learning how they communicated with their faithful and helped them to maintain their life of faith during the period of lockdown and restriction of movement. The survey was conducted online between February and April 2021. Findings show that while the pandemic has reduced the attendance of the faithful at church, priests have responded in various ways, trying to continue spiritual assistance.
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127 members
Antonio Malo
  • Antropologia filosofica
Ralf van Bühren
  • School of Communication, School of Theology
Giulio Maspero
  • Dogmatic Theology
Juan José Carlos Sanguineti
  • School of Philosophy
Luis Martínez Ferrer
  • Storia della Chiesa
Piazza di Sant'Apollinare, 49, 00186, Rome, IT, Italy
Head of institution
Luis Navarro