You will find in this collection Master of Arts in Philosophy theses authored by our graduate students since 2011.

Note: Item records of earlier theses with signed author Library & Archives Canada Non-Exclusive License agreements, are also located in this sub-community.

If you are a graduate of the Institute and have not been contacted in regard to having your thesis or dissertation digitized for the ICS institutional repository please contact us at repository@icscanada.edu

Recent Submissions

  • The Allusivity of Grammar: Developing theory and pedagogy for linguistic aesthetics

    Sweetman, Robert; de Boer, Julia Rosalinda; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 2018-01-11)
  • Incarnating the God Who May Be: Christology and Incarnational Humanism in Bonhoeffer and Kearney

    Kuipers, Ron; Novak, Mark Fraser; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 2017)
    This thesis examines questions of humanity and divinity that are pressing in contemporary philosophy and theology as seen in the thought of Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Richard Kearney. Both these thinkers seek to address issues around transcendence/immanence, sameness/difference, ontology/ethics, and post-metaphysical approaches to God. Chapter one explores the many convergences in their thinking with regards to these topics. Chapter two looks at the main divergence in their thinking: their respective Christologies. Chapter three, following up on the exploration of convergences and divergences in their thought, examines a possible way in which to mediate the difference in their otherwise similar patterns of thinking. The thesis aims, overall, to show that a Christologically-based incarnational humanism is a suitable and appropriate live option that is not only biblical, but also responds to issues in both contemporary philosophy and theology, providing a way to understand how the possibility of divine incarnation depends upon our ongoing human response.
  • "In the Embrace of Absolute Life": A Reading of Christology and Selfhood in Michel Henry's "Christian Trilogy"

    Ansell, Nicholas; Vanderleek, Ethan P.; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 2016-04)
    Michel Henry (1922-2002) was a leading 20th century French philosopher in the school of phenomenology. The final three books of his career focus on explicitly Christian themes and texts, and these books are now known as his “Christian trilogy”. This essay focuses on this trilogy in an exposition of Henry’s Christology, his concept of the Self, and how Christology and selfhood relate to each other. The exposition of Henry’s thought on this issue is stated in the following thesis, broken into three sections: 1) God always reveals himself as Christ 2) who reveals the Truth of the Self, 3) this revelation being identical with salvation. Said again, 1) God’s Revelation is always God’s self-revelation in Christ, and is never separate from 2) the human condition of the Self as a Son of God, and this condition is never separate from 3) salvation. Revelation, selfhood, and salvation. This essay is largely expository but several constructive attempts are made to apply Henry’s philosophy of Christianity to key theological themes, namely atonement, pneumatology, and ecclesiology.
  • Unwrapping the Gift: Empty Notion or Valuable Concept?

    Sweetman, Robert; Polce, Jonathon Emil; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 2016-05)
    The concept of the gift has received ample philosophical attention in recent decades. Thinkers such as Jacques Derrida and Jean-Luc Marion have been major contributors to the conversation philosophically. However, their conclusions around the gift -- while generating many fruitful notions -- leave the gift impoverished from our ordinary experience. Further, their reflections make it difficult to predicated giftedness of existence. This thesis argues for a need to rethink the gift along different lines which seeks to widen the gift in order to be able to predicate it of existence. In order to make such an argument, the ideas of Kenneth Schmitz on the gift are recovered. Schmitz argues for an understanding of giftedness that includes a notion of reciprocity and receptivity -- contra Marion and Derrida. It is this notion of receptivity that makes Schmitz' framework able to be predicated of existence. Existence, understood as gifted, opens up fruitful avenues for anthropology and ethics, as well as argues for a certain disposition towards reality that is centered in wonder and gratitude.
  • From Cynical Reason to Spiritual Creativity: An Exercise in Religious Anthropodicy

    Sweetman, Robert; Dettloff, Dean; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 2015)
    This thesis explores the cultural ideology of cynicism as identified and critiqued by Peter Sloterdijk, who describes cynicism as an "enlightened false consciousness" that is "universal and diffuse." As an ideology, cynicism perpetuates the conditions of unjust society, but it is impervious to criticism. Instead of further critique, the thesis suggests religious traditions can offer means of overcoming the enclosure of cynical consciousness. Chapter one outlines Sloterdijk's approach to cynicism, including its historical development. Chapter two considers cynicism as a problem of self-understanding and proposes religion reveals that human beings are malleable through practices and techniques. Chapter three looks at three such techniques--awareness, compassion, and creativity--and offers them as solutions to cynical consciousness. The thesis aims, overall, to offer a way of considering the continued relevance and possibility of religious traditions, practices, and techniques to a cynical society such that alternative self-understandings and alternative social configurations might be made possible.
  • Relationship Issues: Forgiveness and Promising According to Hannah Arendt and Jacques Derrida

    Hoff, Shannon; Ratzlaff, Caleb; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 2015-08-31)
    In retrospect this learning experience lead me to two conclusions. First, the way we hold someone responsible must reflect the openness and vulnerability of the actor and those to whom she relates. What we do when we hold someone responsible, administering a sentence, for example, must respond to the unending process of interaction and transformation that defines the human person in intersubjective life. This essentially describes the meaning and limits of holding someone responsible. The second lesson was more directly addressed in this thesis. It concerns the idea that the uncertain and vulnerable characteristics of the self that accompany our transformability, are not simply detriments to responsibility. Rather, the uncertain nature of a self as it exists in relationship with others is a condition of meaningfulness, responsibility, and love. As a condition of responsibility, our finitude calls for the sustaining ethical practices of promises and forgiveness. Uncertainty, even in its greatest manifestations as birth and death, is something we can embrace.
  • Sigmund Freud's Model of Transference: a Developmental History

    Olthuis, James H.; Van Wyk, Kenneth; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 1987)
    I propose to examine the major statements by Freud on the topic of transference and counter-transference. This will not be exhaustive, rather the chosen statments will serve as foci for demonstrating major philosophical and anthropological changes which occur during Freud's development of psychoanalytic theory. [p.1]
  • The I's Relationship to the other as Transcendent, Foundational, and Ethical in Levinas' Totality and Infinity

    Hoff, Shannon; Hanna, Eric James John; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 2013-07)
    An interpretation and application of the key insights about the I and the other from Emmanuel Levinas' book: Totality and Infinity. The first chapter interprets Levinas' terminology, specifically his notions of the I and the other, and shows how he describes human experience. The second chapter explores how the other is transcendent to the I as a site of ongoing possibility for the significance of experience, how the other founds the I during human development in the person of the caregiver, and how the I's basic relationship to the other has an ethical character. The third chapter applies these insights to show how they can lead to a more authentic living out of interpersonal relationships and to better ways of thinking about human living in social and political contexts.
  • Faith, Knowledge and Science: A Systematic Exposition of the Thought of Michael Polanyi

    Seerveld, Calvin; Anastasiou, Harry; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 1979)
  • Power and Mutuality in Modern Foreign Language Education: The Possibility of a Christian Orientation

    Olthuis, James H.; Smith, David Ian; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 1997-09)
  • "Zus en Zo over Dit en Dat": an Essay on the Concept of Function in the Systematic Philosophy of Herman Dooyeweerd

    Hart, Hendrik; Wolters, Albert M.; Recker, Perry; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 1977)
  • Metaphor, An Aesthetic Figure: An Analysis of Philip Wheelwright's Theory

    Seerveld, Calvin; Ophardt, Michael J.; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 1983-05)
  • Liberal Progressivism and Public Policy: A Foundational Analysis of Unemployment Insurance in Canada

    Marshall, Paul A.; Hogeterp, Michael C.; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 1995-10)
  • Translation of the Implicit: Tracing How Language Works Beyond Gendlin and Derrida

    Zuidervaart, Lambert; Huisman, Jelle; Institute for Christian Studies (2012)
    This thesis discusses the explication of the implicit side of language, from the perspective of the self, the social, and the text, as situated in the wider context of thinking about language 'beyond post-modernism.' Language is first discussed as an intricacy, an intricate and changing complex of explicit signs and implicit elements and processes. It is shown that the implicit processes, such the speaking of being (Heidegger), focusing (Gendlin), and the interrelatedness of language and culture (Agar), are ruptured by processes like deconstruction (Derrida) and the semiotic breach of the symbolic (Kristeva). Explication brings a part of the implicit to the surface in the form of creativity (Deleuze) and critique, which is also discussed in the examples of play (Gadamer) and care. The transformations involved are illustrated in reflections on writing (Plato), poetry (Trakl), life as immigrant, and on translation as a philosophical practice.
  • Soliciting the Decisions of Philosophy: An Exposition of "Plato's Pharmacy" by Jacques Derrida

    Seerveld, Calvin; Adkins, Brent; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 1994)
  • Independent Filmmaking: Projecting a Screen of Particularity With Integration

    Seerveld, Calvin; Macklin, Scott; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 1995)
  • A Crushing Truth for Art: Martin Heidegger's Meditation on Truth and the Work of Art in Der Ursprung des Kunstwerkes

    Seerveld, Calvin; Knudsen, Donald L.; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 1987)
  • On Spectation: Mikel Dufrenne's Valuation of Aesthetic Experience

    Seerveld, Calvin; Enneson, Peter; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 1981-07)
  • Compassion and Protest in the Art of Kaethe Schmidt Kollwitz

    Seerveld, Calvin; Reimer, Priscilla Beth; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 1989-11)
  • One Man's God ... Another's Demon: A Study Into the Relativity of Value and the Remoteness of Science in the Sociology of Max Weber

    Olthuis, James H.; Breems, Bradley G.; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 1975-10)

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