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Grant number: FB-10550-70

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FB-10550-70

Joseph Bettis
Western Washington University (Bellingham, WA 98225-5996)

Social Ethics and Radical Social Change

Study of suitability of Karl Barth's social ethic based on the recognition of man's dependence on others for his humanity as the source for a social ethic relevant to contemporary American society. ABSTRACT: Study of suitability of Karl Barth's social ethic as the source for a social ethic relevant to the contemporary situation in America. Social ethics in America has been rooted in an uncritical acceptance of the 19th century myth of progress. Since Barth develops a rationale other than the myth of progress, it has been assumed that he provides no help in the formulation of a social ethic. However, technological progress, while producing abundant material benefits, has failed to supply adequate social and ethical satisfaction and has resulted in an emergence of a radical cultural critique and the use of violence as a kind of calculated social action. Barth shows that the origin for social ethics is not the struggle to improve the human condition but a recognition of one's dependence on others for his humanity.

Project fields:
Philosophy of Religion

Program:
Fellowships for College Teachers and Independent Scholars

Division:
Research Programs

Total amounts:
$9,500 (approved)
$9,500 (awarded)

Grant period:
9/1/1970 – 5/31/1971