Natural Law

List of Readings

Natural law, or right reason , rests on the self-evident truths of fundamental goods and supposes that humanaction can be directed toward what is morally right by practical reason. According to Aquinas, “Goodis the first thing that falls under the apprehension of the practical reason, which is directed toaction: since every agent acts for an end under the aspect of good. Consequently the first principlein the practical reason is one founded on the notion of good.” Summa Theologiae,I—II, 94, a.2.

Below are selected readings exploring the truths and application of natural law.

Aristotle

Aristotle. Ethics.
Aristotle. Politics.

Aquinas, Saint Thomas

Aquinas, Saint Thomas. Summa Theologica. London: Blackfriars, 1975.
Aquinas, Saint Thomas. Commentarium super epistolam ad Romanos, c.14, lect.2 (ad v.5), in S. Thomae Aquinatus Super Epistolas S. Pauli Lectura, R. Cai, O.P. (ed.). Turin: Marietti, .
Aquinas, Saint Thomas. In Duo Praecepta Caritatis et in Decem Legis Praecepta. Prologus: Opuscula Theologica, II, No.1129, Ed. Taurinen. Paris, 1954.

Althusius, Johannes

Althusius, Johannes. Politica. Boston: Beacon Press, 1964 (1614).

Barth, Karl

Biggar, Nigel

Biggar, Nigel. "Is the New Natural Law Theory Christian?" In The Revival of Natural Law: Philosophical, Theological and Ethical Responses to the Finnis-Grisez School, 148-63. Edited by Nigel Biggar and Rufus Black. Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2000.
Biggar, Nigel. The Hastening that Waits: Karl Barth's Ethics. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1993.
Biggar, Nigel. The New Natural Law Theory In The Revival of Natural Law: Philosophical, Theological and Ethical Responses to the Finnis-Grisez School, 1-28. Edited by Nigel Biggar and Rufus Black. Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2000.

Black, Rufus

Black, Rufus. Christian Moral Realism: Natural Law, Narrative, Virtue and the Gospel. New York: Oxford University Press, 2000.
Black, Rufus. "Is the New Natural Law Theory Christian?" In The Revival of Natural Law: Philosophical, Theological and Ethical Responses to the Finnis-Grisez School, 148-63. Edited by Nigel Biggar and Rufus Black. Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2000.
Black, Rufus. Karl Barth and Germain Grisez on the Human Good: An Ecumenical Rapprochement. In The Revival of Natural Law: Philosophical, Theological and Ethical Responses to the Finnis-Grisez School, 164-83. Edited by Nigel Biggar and Rufus Black. Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2000.
Black, Rufus. "The New Natural Law Theory" In The Revival of Natural Law: Philosophical, Theological and Ethical Responses to the Finnis-Grisez School, 1-28. Edited by Nigel Biggar and Rufus Black. Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2000.

Brunner, Emil

Brunner, Emil. Christianity and Civilization. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1948-49.
Brunner, Emil. Justice and the Social Order. London: Lutterworth Press, 1945.
Brunner, Emil. Man in Revolt: A Christian Anthropology. Philadelphia: Westminster Press, 1947.
Brunner, Emil. Revelation and Reason: The Christian Doctrine of Faith and Knowledge. Philadelphia: Westminster Press, 1946.
Brunner, Emil. The Divine Imperative: A Study in Christian Ethics. New York: Macmillan, 1937.

Budziszewski, J

Budziszewski, J. Written on the Heart: The Case for Natural Law. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1997.
Budziszewski, J. The Revenge of Conscience: Politics and the Fall of Man. Dallas: Spence Publishing, 2000.
Budziszewski, J. "The Roots of Law" In Religion & Liberty, vol. 11, n. 5. Grand Rapids: Acton Institute, 2001.
Budziszewski, J. What We Can't Not Know: A Guide. Dallas: Spence Publishing, 2003.

Burlamaqui, Jean-Jacques

Burlamaqui, Jean-Jacques. The Principles of Natural and Politic Law (1747). Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2006.

Culverwell, Nathaniel

Cumberland, Richard

Cumberland, Richard. A Treatise of the Laws of Nature (1627). Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2005.

Finnis, John

Finnis, John. Aquinas: Moral, Political and Legal Theory. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998.
Finnis, John. Fundamentals of Ethics. Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press, 1983.
Finnis, John. Natural Law and Natural Rights. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1980/1993.
Finnis, John. "A Bill of Rights for Britain? The Moral of Contemporary Jurisprudence", Maccabaean Lecture in Jurisprudence, Proceedings of the British Academy 71. , 1985.
Finnis, John. Nuclear Deterrence: Morality and Realism. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1987.
Finnis, John. "Legal Enforcement of 'Duties to Oneself': Kant v. Neo-Kantians", Columbia Law Review 87. , 1987.
Finnis, John. Moral Absolutes: Tradition, Revision, and Truth. Washington, DC: University of America Press, 1991.

George, Robert P, ed

George, Robert P, ed. Natural Law Theory: Contemporary Essays. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995.
George, Robert P., ed. Natural Law, Liberalism, and Morality. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1996.
George, Robert P. ed. Natural Law and Public Reason. Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press, 2000.

George, Robert P

George, Robert P. "Moralistic Liberalism and Legal Moralism", Michigan Law Review 88. , 1990.
George, Robert P. Making Men Moral: Civil Liberties and Public Morality. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1993.
George, Robert P. "Natural Law and Positive Law" in The Autonomy of Law: Essays on Legal Positivism. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1996.
George, Robert P. "Natural Law and International Order" in The Constitution of International Society: Diverse Ethical Perspectives, Terry Nardin et al. (eds.). Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1998.
George, Robert P. In Defense of Natural Law. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1999.

Glendon, Mary Ann

Glendon, Mary Ann. Rights Talk: The Impoverishment of Political Discourse. New York: Free Press, 1991.

Gierke, Otto Friedrich von

Gierke, Otto Friedrich von. Natural Law and the Theory of Society, 1500-1800. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1950.

Grabill, Stephen

Grabill, Stephen. Rediscovering the Natural Law in Reformed Theological Ethics. Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans, 2005.

Gregg, Samuel

Gregg, Samuel. On Ordered Liberty. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2003.
Gregg, Samuel. Morality, Law, and Public Policy. Sydney: St. Thomas More Press, 2001.

Grotius, Hugo

Grotius, Hugo. Commentary on the Law of Prize and Booty (1603). Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2006.
Grotius, Hugo. The Rights of War and Peace (1625), 3 vols. Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2005.

Gustafson, James M

Gustafson, James M. Protestant and Roman Catholic Ethics: Prospects for Rapprochement. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1978.

Hare, John E

Hare, John E. God's Call: Moral Realism, God's Commands, and Human Autonomy. Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans, 2001.

Helm, Paul

Helm, Paul. "Calvin and Natural Law". Scottish Bulletin of Evangelical Theology 2. , 1984.

Hittinger, Russell

Hittinger, Russell. A Critique of the New Natural Law Theory. Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 1987.

Hutcheson, Francis

Hutcheson, Francis. Logic, Metaphysics, and the Natural Sociability of Mankind (1730). Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2006.

Kuyper, Abraham

Kuyper, Abraham. De gemeene gratie, 3 vols. Leiden: Donner, 1902.
Kuyper, Abraham. Encyclopaedie der heilige godgeleerdheid, 3 vols. Amsterdam: J.A. Wormser, 1894.

Mackintosh, Sir James

Mackintosh, Sir James. Vindiciae Gallicae and Other Writings on the French Revolution (1791). Indianapolis: Liberty Fund, 2006.

MacIntyre, Alasdair

MacIntyre, Alasdair. After Virtue: A Study in Moral Theory. Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 1981.
MacIntyre, Alasdair. Whose Justice? Which Rationality?. Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 1988.

Wolfe, Christopher, ed

Wolfe, Christopher, ed. Natural Law and Public Reason. Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press, 2000.