Natural Law and Perspectivism: A Case for Plural Definitions of Objective Morality

Todd A. Salzman, Michael G. Lawler

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


This essay is about Catholic theological ethics and an explanation of competing answers to questions raised by Catholic ethicists. The core of the essay is a presentation of the cognitional theory of perspectivism as a counter to the concerns of relativism raised by Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI. The essay considers the foundational theory of natural law and contrasts its 19th-century neo-Thomist understanding with Aquinas's own understanding of natural law as reason. As a concrete illustration of the theories of perspectivism and natural law, the essay considers the question of contraception and its competing Catholic answers.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3-18
Number of pages16
JournalIrish Theological Quarterly
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Religious studies

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