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154 BOOK REVIEWS ology. For example, on the issue-rightly central to Buckley-of whether Christian beliefs that look particular can nevertheless be held as universal, that is, valid for all minds, they had strong views and they gave good reasons to support them. Buckley does not mention those views on truth or their supporting reasons. Buckley's fundamental interest seems to lie in the conflict between particularity and universality (the Lessing problem). Any good patristic or medieval thinker would take him to task for the very way he frames the tension between "Catholicity" and "catholicity." Among those of his readers who are theologians knowledgeable in the Catholic tradition, several are likely to ask: How can a book that purports to introduce college students to Catholic theology ignore the contribution not only of the ancient Catholic doctors, but of a brilliant contemporary Catholic author like Bernard Lonergan, who, in Method in Theology, comes to grips with the Lessing problem, namely, historicity and truth? Buckley's discussion of doctrinal "rivalries" could have profited from Lonergan's functional specialties (hardly sorted out in Buckley's book), differentiations of consciousness, or distinction between different complementary perspectives and different incompatible horizons. When he introduces an issue, usually Buckley does not take a firm stance (44-50, for instance). At times, he suggests that it is preferable not to resolve problems: "the unresolved problems are what constitute it [soteriology] as an inquiry (in contrast, say, to a set of settled questions)" (120). Fortunately, he escapes-at least once-this fashionable yet unwarranted precept (of opting for inquiry at the expense of settling questions). Interestingly, it is when he adopts Karl Barth's settling of the question of how one can relate Christian and other soteriologies (113-117). In sum, many readers will probably find useful Buckley's compendious endnotes and his formulation of the current difficulties involved in doing theology . For all its riches, however, the perspective adopted in this work is narrowly contemporary in its ignorance of relevant Catholic insights. Boston College Chestnut Hill, MA LOUIS ROY, 0.P. Making Men Moral: Civil Liberties and Public Morality. By ROBERT P. GEORGE. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1993. Pp. 241. $45.00 (cloth). Making Men Moral, by Robert George of Princeton, is an intensive, provocative, and dispassionate contemplation of the nature of public morality and civil liberties. Although my last phrase reverses the order of the book's subtitle, this reversal of order accords well with the basic structure of George's argument. For he contends that the nature of the good is the foun- BOOK REVIEWS 155 dation of civil liberties, which liberties he derives from a "thick," i.e., content -filled, notion of the good. George articulates this rooting of civil liberties critically, in response to "antiperfectionist" analyses that epistemically divorce civil liberties from the nature of the good, while also positively sketching a "perfectionist" account of civil liberties. The central "perfectionist" tenet that George sets out to defend is stated at the very beginning of the book. Having pointed out that law is not able of itself to make men moral, but only to command outward conformity , he nonetheless notes about the pre-liberal tradition of political morality that: According to this tradition, laws forbidding certain powerfully seductive and corrupting vices (some sexual, some not) can help people to establish and preserve a virtuous character by (1) preventing the (further) self-corruption which follows from acting out a choice to indulge in immoral conduct; (2) preventing the bad example by which others are induced to emulate such behavior; (3) helping to preserve the moral ecology in which people make their morally self-constituting choices; and (4) educating people about moral right and wrong. (p. 1) This positive evaluation of the moral justification and helpfulness of legal constraints is frontally challenged by the liberal tradition. From the harm principle articulated by J. S. Mill, according to which wholly self-regarding action is viewed as beyond the just constraint of the law, to various schools of thought that consider "the right" to be prior to, and unfounded upon, "the good," liberals have tended to deny that any "legislation of morality" by the state can be a...

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Additional Information

ISSN
2473-3725
Print ISSN
0040-6325
Pages
pp. 154-158
Launched on MUSE
2017-04-05
Open Access
No
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