The peculiar dilemma of the self in our era has been noted by a wide range of writers, even as they have emphasized different aspects of that dilemma, such as the self’s alienation, disorientation, inflation, or fragmentation. In The Self: Beyond the Postmodern Crisis, Paul C. Vitz and Susan M. Felch bring together scholars from the disciplines of psychology, philosophy, theology, literature, biology, and physics to address the inadequacies of modern and postmodern selves and, ultimately, to suggest what an alternative, "transmodern" account of the self might look like. The transmodern self, the editors argue, acknowledges meaning and purpose transcending the individual. In other words, it reflects an understanding of the human person that is not only intimately connected with the Judeo-Christian tradition but also rejects the twin delusions of absolute autonomy and cosmic meaninglessness that mark the present age.
What They're Saying...
"This is engaged scholarship at its best. The concept of the self is at the
heart of postmodern thinking in philosophy, literature, psychology, and
other disciplines. The contributors provide a penetrating and comprehensive
analysis of the modern and postmodern concept. But they also critique that
concept and argue convincingly that the Judeo-Christian tradition provides a
superior understanding of the self."
— Donald G. Marshall, Fletcher Jones Chair of Great Books, Humanities and Teacher Education Division, Pepperdine University
“All who are concerned about the fragmented and Promethean character of the postmodern selfand that should be all of uswill find in this collection of essays an excellent starting point for developing a more robust and substantive notion of the self. Readers may conclude that there remains much work to be done in fleshing out and then defending a “transmodern” account of the self, but this collection establishes that disciplines from the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences have an interest in the problem and a contribution to make in transcending the postmodern crisis of the self.”
— Thomas D. Kennedy, Professor of Philosophy, Valparaiso University