The Human Spirit

Beginnings from Genesis to Science

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Marjorie O'Rourke Boyle
  • University Park, PA: 
    Pennsylvania State University Press
    , November
     344 pages.
     For other formats: Link to Publisher's Website.
Review coming soon!

Review by Maureen Heath forthcoming.


In this volume, Marjorie O’Rourke Boyle probes significant concepts of the human spirit in Western religious culture across more than two millennia, from the book of Genesis to early modern science. 

The Human Spirit treats significant interpretations of human nature as religious in political, philosophical, and physical aspects by tracing its historical subject through the Priestly tradition of the Hebrew Bible and the writings of the apostle Paul among the Corinthians, the innovative theologians Augustine and Aquinas, the reformatory theologian Calvin, and the natural philosopher and physician William Harvey. Boyle analyzes the particular experiences and notions of these influential authors while she contextualizes them in community. She shows how they shared a conviction, although distinctly understood, of the human spirit as endowed by or designed by a divine source of everything animate.

An original and erudite work that utilizes a rich and varied array of primary source material, this volume will be of interest to intellectual and cultural historians of religion, philosophy, literature, and medicine.

About the Author(s)/Editor(s)/Translator(s): 

Marjorie O'Rourke Boyle is the author of eight other books including three volumes on Erasmus and Petrarch's Genius: Pentimento and Prophecy. She was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in religion in 1979.



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