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The Acting Person: A Contribution to Phenomenological Anthropology (Analecta Husserliana) Hardcover – 28 Feb 1979

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From the Reviews: "The Acting Person represents a major effort to rethink the human reality in the face of the many frozen assumptions which dominate contemporary thought."
(Professor Benjamin Schwartz, Harvard University)
"This powerful phenomenological study will have lasting impact on those concerned with the contemporary conception of Man."
(Professor Joseph Kockelmans, Pennsylvania State University)
"A masterly critical edition ... its publication is an historical event"
(Professor Kamil Dziewanowski, Boson State University)

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Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars 18 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perhaps Most Important Piece of 20th-century Western Philosophy 13 May 2012
By StegRock - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
While not the most eloquently and clearly written piece or the most well-translated or even well-interpreted version, "Person and Act" could very well be the most important piece of late 20th-century western philosophy, or so I think (but I put my money where my mouth is on that one -- see below). Indeed, Wojtylan personalism generally could be the most important movement in contemporary western, and not just Catholic, thought, and this is Wojytla's, for better or worse regarding specifics, magnum opus on the matter.

I will add that I put my money, nay, my livelihood where my mouth is on this one. I am a doctoral candidate in Philosophy whose dissertation revolves largely around Wojtylan personalist philosophy and "Person and Act" (at least on the western side of the ball). Indeed, I am an older guy who (entered graduate school in 2004 at age 33 and) bounced around through four programs trying to find one that welcomed my thesis and project. It was not easy, indeed it was terribly difficult to find a Philosophy program that would, but I thankfully did.

Anyway, for some further thoughts I have on the book, I point you in the direction of my initial response to the critical review by A. Aversa:


Other than that, I welcome questions or comments. I could talk about this book all day and, though time constraints are great, would do my best to respond in as timely of a fashion as possible.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 23 Jun. 2015
By Auntie Ane's Attic - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Required for school. Kept my attention while in class.
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 9 Jan. 2015
By Diana - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Very happy with it
33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The controversy on The Acting Person 28 May 2000
By Rodrigo Guerra - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
"The Acting Person" is a modified version of Karol Wojtyla's "Osoba i Czyn" originally published in 1969. Ana-Teresa Tymieniecka, the editor, changed important philosophical terminology (suppositum, esse, etc.) in order to push Wojtyla's book towards her personal approach to phenomenology. Even more, Tymieniecka wrote "The Acting Person" is the "Definitive text of the work established in collaboration with the author"... From 1979 to 1999 the controversy on this "definitive text" was intense.Tyemeniecka argued she had the full authorization of doing what she did and criticized the complaints from the Commision named by John Paul II for analizing the english translation (The members of the Commision were: Marian Jaworski, Andrzej Poltawski and Tadeusz Styczen). Even the official translator who worked close to Tyemeniecka, Andrzej Potocki, accepted she made important changes far from the convictions and intentions of the author. The controversy should finished in 1994 with the publication of Karol Wojtyla's "Osoba i czyn oraz inne studia antropologiczne" by T. Styczen, A. Szostek and others in the publishing house of the Catholic University of Lublin (TKUL). However, many scholars did not know the new and fully authorized edition. In 1999 Giovanni Reale and Tadeusz Styczen, with the full agreement of John Paul II, published "Persona e Atto. Testo polacco a fronte" in Rusconi Libri (Santarcangelo di Romagna 1999) and latter they published it again in Bompiani (Milano 2001) and in Karol Wojtyla's "Metafisica della Persona. Tutte le opere filosofiche e saggi integrativi" (Bompiani, Milano 2003). [...].
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars " A definitive form from my text" - Wojtyla 29 April 2005
By Juan Olvera - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Wojtyla's original version of the Acting Person is now known as his Opus Magnus of his philosophical work. I will skip writing regarding what this book is about since reviewers below did a good job however I would like to mention some interesting facts such as that Wojtyla wrote his original work during the Second Vatican Council and, specifically, as he mentioned in his Gift & Mystery book sequel, wrote in a chapel where His Most Blessed Sacrament was.

Furthermore, regarding the differences from the Anglo translation hitherto being reviewed, there is a preface from Wojtyla himself-which he felt in obligation to do- that mentions that the Anglo book is a bit different:

The Acting Person " in comparison with the first and only Polish edition...contains a certain number of changes however the basic conception has remained unaltered" ( Wojtyla's preface to the Anglo work).

The "certain number of changes" as Wojtyla describes are in around 900 places in the Anglo version as Kupczak once noted.

Since Wojtyla wrote the aforementioned preface there is now a more definitive Polish edition; the 1994 3rd Edition from the University of Lublin. You can obtain the latter from a Polish bookstore website which is how I got a copy however I noticed that Amazon might be able to get you a copy as well -use the search option.

Regarding the Spanish version as some reviewers mentioned below, it is not any different from the Anglo version- and hence not imperative unless you can't read English- because it is an exact translation from the latter. The title of the Spanish version is called Persona y Acción. You might still get a copy from the source - B.A.C ( Bliblioteca de Autores Cristianos). That's how I got mine and through their website I obtained a brand new-out-of print-hardcopy of Persona y Accion for $46 bucks including S&H.

Overall, the Anglo version is not a bad book to read and as Wojtyla himself wrote regarding it: the Anglo version " has given a definitive form from my text" ( Wojtyla/JPII). If you still concerned about the Anglo version because of its 900 or so changes than learn Polish and buy Osaba i czyn.
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