To Flourish or Destruct: A Personalist Theory of Human Goods, Motivations, Failure, and Evil

3.86 avg rating
( 7 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780226231952: To Flourish or Destruct: A Personalist Theory of Human Goods, Motivations, Failure, and Evil


In his 2010 book What Is a Person?, Christian Smith argued that sociology had for too long neglected this fundamental question. Prevailing social theories, he wrote, do not adequately capture our deep subjective experience as persons, crucial dimensions of the richness of our own lived lives, what thinkers in previous ages might have called our souls’ or hearts.’” Building on Smith’s previous work, To Flourish or Destruct examines the motivations intrinsic to this subjective experience: Why do people do what they do? How can we explain the activity that gives rise to all human social life and social structures?
 
Smith argues that our actions stem from a motivation to realize what he calls natural human goods: ends that are, by nature, constitutionally good for all human beings. He goes on to explore the ways we can and do fail to realize these ends a failure that can result in varying gradations of evil. Rooted in critical realism and informed by work in philosophy, psychology, and other fields, Smith’s ambitious book situates the idea of personhood at the center of our attempts to understand how we might shape good human lives and societies.

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

About the Author:

Christian Smith is the William R. Kenan, Jr., Professor of Sociology at the University of Notre Dame, where he directs the Center for the Study of Religion and Society and the Notre Dame Center for Social Research.  He is the author or coauthor of several books, including What Is a Person? and Soul Searching: The Religious and Spiritual Lives of American Teenagers.

Review:

“Smith extends his careful work on the individual, as presented in What Is a Person?, to demonstrate the insufficiency of human motivation and agency in the work of social scientists, in particular sociologists. . . . Smith’s careful readings of Marx and sociologists Goffman and Durkheim reveal how their reductionist readings of human motivation cannot account for why humans act or fail to flourish. Smith then sets out a careful theory about the sorts of needs humans must satisfy in order to flourish and the ways that these needs structure human action. This major work in sociological theory should be read by social scientists in all disciplines. Highly recommended.” (Choice)

To Flourish or Destruct poses a powerful and important challenge to the entire discipline of sociology. Smith is becoming the anchor of a humanist renewal in sociology and although he is not alone in this movement, what makes To Flourish or Destruct different is a coherent, new, oppositional perspective that draws on critical realism to affirm both human personhood and the ever-present moral element in human affairs. Smith’s Personalism could become the banner around which a very different kind of sociology develops, one that respects the centered consciousness that is human personhood.” (Douglas Porpora, Drexel University)

“Speaking in a voice of common sense and reasonableness, and using everyday language, Smith blasts apart most of the assumptions of modern social science and relativism and sets up an alternative scaffolding of moral realism and the theoretical position he calls Personalism. This book represents a major advance in sociology and more specifically within critical realism, which is gradually emerging as a full-fledged alternative in the social sciences. I am fundamentally convinced by this book.” (George Steinmetz, University of Michigan)

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

Christian Smith
Published by University of Chicago press
ISBN 10: 022623195X ISBN 13: 9780226231952
New Quantity Available: > 20
Seller
INDOO
(Avenel, NJ, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description University of Chicago press. Book Condition: New. Brand New. Bookseller Inventory # 022623195X

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 33.43
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.50
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

2.

Smith, Christian
Published by University of Chicago Press, Chicago (2015)
ISBN 10: 022623195X ISBN 13: 9780226231952
New Hardcover First Edition Quantity Available: 1
Seller
Bramcote Books Limited
(Nottingham, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 2015. Cloth on Board. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. First Edition. NEW BOOK situating the idea of personhood at the centre of our attempts to understand how we might shape good human lives and societies; pp x, 342. Bookseller Inventory # 018001

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 31.28
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 7.14
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

3.

Christian Smith
Published by The University of Chicago Press, United States (2015)
ISBN 10: 022623195X ISBN 13: 9780226231952
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 10
Seller
The Book Depository US
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description The University of Chicago Press, United States, 2015. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In his 2010 book What Is a Person?, Christian Smith argued that sociology had for too long neglected this fundamental question. Prevailing social theories, he wrote, do not adequately capture our deep subjective experience as persons, crucial dimensions of the richness of our own lived lives, what thinkers in previous ages might have called our souls or hearts. Building on Smith s previous work, To Flourish or Destruct examines the motivations intrinsic to this subjective experience: Why do people do what they do? How can we explain the activity that gives rise to all human social life and social structures? Smith argues that our actions stem from a motivation to realize what he calls natural human goods: ends that are, by nature, constitutionally good for all human beings. He goes on to explore the ways we can and do fail to realize these ends-a failure that can result in varying gradations of evil. Rooted in critical realism and informed by work in philosophy, psychology, and other fields, Smith s ambitious book situates the idea of personhood at the center of our attempts to understand how we might shape good human lives and societies. Bookseller Inventory # AAH9780226231952

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 41.31
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

4.

Christian Smith
Published by The University of Chicago Press, United States (2015)
ISBN 10: 022623195X ISBN 13: 9780226231952
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 10
Seller
The Book Depository
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description The University of Chicago Press, United States, 2015. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In his 2010 book What Is a Person?, Christian Smith argued that sociology had for too long neglected this fundamental question. Prevailing social theories, he wrote, do not adequately capture our deep subjective experience as persons, crucial dimensions of the richness of our own lived lives, what thinkers in previous ages might have called our souls or hearts. Building on Smith s previous work, To Flourish or Destruct examines the motivations intrinsic to this subjective experience: Why do people do what they do? How can we explain the activity that gives rise to all human social life and social structures? Smith argues that our actions stem from a motivation to realize what he calls natural human goods: ends that are, by nature, constitutionally good for all human beings. He goes on to explore the ways we can and do fail to realize these ends-a failure that can result in varying gradations of evil. Rooted in critical realism and informed by work in philosophy, psychology, and other fields, Smith s ambitious book situates the idea of personhood at the center of our attempts to understand how we might shape good human lives and societies. Bookseller Inventory # AAH9780226231952

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 42.20
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

5.

Smith, Christian
Published by Univ of Chicago Pr (2015)
ISBN 10: 022623195X ISBN 13: 9780226231952
New Quantity Available: 10
Seller
Paperbackshop-US
(Wood Dale, IL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Univ of Chicago Pr, 2015. HRD. Book Condition: New. New Book. Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000. Bookseller Inventory # TX-9780226231952

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 38.94
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

6.

Smith, Christian
Published by Univ of Chicago Pr (2015)
ISBN 10: 022623195X ISBN 13: 9780226231952
New Quantity Available: 1
Seller
Pbshop
(Wood Dale, IL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Univ of Chicago Pr, 2015. HRD. Book Condition: New. New Book.Shipped from US within 10 to 14 business days. Established seller since 2000. Bookseller Inventory # IB-9780226231952

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 39.52
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

7.

Smith
Published by Univ of Chicago
ISBN 10: 022623195X ISBN 13: 9780226231952
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller
Rating
[?]

Book Description Univ of Chicago. Book Condition: BRAND NEW. BRAND NEW Hardcover A Brand New Quality Book from a Full-Time Bookshop in business since 1992!. Bookseller Inventory # 2548304

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 43.94
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

8.

Smith, Christian
Published by University of Chicago Press (2015)
ISBN 10: 022623195X ISBN 13: 9780226231952
New Quantity Available: 20
Seller
Books2Anywhere
(Fairford, GLOS, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description University of Chicago Press, 2015. HRD. Book Condition: New. New Book. Shipped from UK in 4 to 14 days. Established seller since 2000. Bookseller Inventory # WG-9780226231952

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 35.87
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 11.58
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

9.

Christian Smith
Published by The University of Chicago Press, United States (2015)
ISBN 10: 022623195X ISBN 13: 9780226231952
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 10
Seller
Book Depository hard to find
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description The University of Chicago Press, United States, 2015. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . This book usually ship within 10-15 business days and we will endeavor to dispatch orders quicker than this where possible. Brand New Book. In his 2010 book What Is a Person?, Christian Smith argued that sociology had for too long neglected this fundamental question. Prevailing social theories, he wrote, do not adequately capture our deep subjective experience as persons, crucial dimensions of the richness of our own lived lives, what thinkers in previous ages might have called our souls or hearts. Building on Smith s previous work, To Flourish or Destruct examines the motivations intrinsic to this subjective experience: Why do people do what they do? How can we explain the activity that gives rise to all human social life and social structures? Smith argues that our actions stem from a motivation to realize what he calls natural human goods: ends that are, by nature, constitutionally good for all human beings. He goes on to explore the ways we can and do fail to realize these ends-a failure that can result in varying gradations of evil. Rooted in critical realism and informed by work in philosophy, psychology, and other fields, Smith s ambitious book situates the idea of personhood at the center of our attempts to understand how we might shape good human lives and societies. Bookseller Inventory # BTE9780226231952

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 50.03
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

10.

Smith, Christian
Published by University Of Chicago Press (2015)
ISBN 10: 022623195X ISBN 13: 9780226231952
New Hardcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller
Ergodebooks
(RICHMOND, TX, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description University Of Chicago Press, 2015. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # BKTY9780226231952

More Information About This Seller | Ask Bookseller a Question

Buy New
US$ 46.54
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 3.99
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

There are more copies of this book

View all search results for this book