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This article examines and seeks to define Karl Rahner’s distinctive view of human dignity. Despite the relative infrequency of the words “dignity” or “image of God” in Rahner’s work, the inherent and realized worth of the individual holds a central place in his overall moral theology, especially as it appears in Foundations of Christian Faith. In particular, the article seeks to demonstrate that Rahner’s view of the (in)vulnerability of human dignity serves as a synthetic moral principle unifying his conceptions of freedom, the supernatural existential, the categorical, and the fundamental option. This article concludes by suggesting how Rahner’s conception of dignity may be helpful for the development of a comprehensive definition of dignity within the Catholic Social Thought Tradition.
Petrusek, Matthew. “The Relevance of Karl Rahner’s View of Dignity for the Catholic Social Thought Tradition,” Philosophy and Theology, (2015) 27 (2): 513-538, DOI: 10.5840/philtheol201511542.