The Common Good: An Introduction to Personalism by Jonas Norgaard MortensenThe Common Good: An Introduction to Personalism by Jonas Norgaard Mortensen

The Common Good: An Introduction to Personalism

byJonas Norgaard Mortensen

Hardcover | March 6, 2017

Pricing and Purchase Info


Earn 298 plum® points

Prices and offers may vary in store


In stock online

Ships free on orders over $25

Not available in stores


Our traditional ways of thinking about politics and society are becoming obsolete. We need some new points of reference in order to re-imagine the possible character, growth, and functioning of our private and common life. Such re-imagination would imply doing away with every-man-for-himself individualism as well as consumption-makes-me-happy materialism and the-state-will-take-care-of-it passivity. 

There is an alternative: Personalism is a forgotten, yet golden perspective on humanity that seeks to describe what a human being is and to then draw the social consequences. Personalism builds upon the thinking of Martin Buber and Emmanuel Levinas, among others, and has been a source of inspiration for Martin Luther King, Desmond Tutu, and other important personalities in recent history. 

According to personalism, humans are relational and engaged and possess dignity. The person and the relationship amongst persons are the universal point of departure: Human beings have inherent dignity, and good relationships amongst humans are crucial for the good, engaged life and for a good society. 

Personalism has been greatly neglected in Western political thought. In this book, Jonas Norgaard Mortensen attempts to introduce personalism while simultaneously demonstrating its historical origins, acquainting the reader with its thinkers and those who have practiced it, and showing that personalism has a highly relevant contribution to make in the debate about today’s social and political developments. 

Jonas Norgaard Mortensen is committed to the philosophical and value debate on the welfare state. In 2012 Jonas Norgaard Mortensen published the Danish book "Det fælles bedste" (in English "The Common Good"), which has since been published in three editions. In 2015 Jonas Norgaard Mortensen published the anthologies "The personal commu...
Title:The Common Good: An Introduction to PersonalismFormat:HardcoverDimensions:172 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.44 inPublished:March 6, 2017Publisher:Vernon Art and ScienceLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:1622731921

ISBN - 13:9781622731923

Look for similar items by category:


Table of Contents

Foreword by Thomas O. Buford 

The Relational Human 
You and I, Alfred

The Engaged Human 
You Are Free for Community 

The Dignified Human 
You Are One of a Kind 

Challenges to Personalism 
You and I – on Our Way 

Psychology and personalism

About the Author 

Editorial Reviews

”The Common Good captures personalism’s core insight, interpersonal relationsas the key to understanding God, Persons, and the world. This presentationof personalism is the first, as far as I know, to present personalism to ageneral audience. From that perspective, The Common Good, accomplishesan important goal: Personalism is central to daily grappling with our commonlives together. Pulled to something greater than ourselves, we mustembrace personalism with unrelenting passion.”Thomas O. Buford, professor, Furman University, North Carolina, USA”I very much enjoyed reading The Common Good. The book does an excellentjob of conveying what personalism is about that certainly will be understandableto a general reader, as well as of interest to personalist academics.”James Beauregard, Rivier University, Nashua, New Hampshire, USA”Jonas Norgaard has done a great job by exposing the personalist thoughtbrilliantly adapted to the mentality and interests of the 21st century. Combininghis skills as a communicator with precision in presenting the authors,he has been able to present the main anthropological and social keys of personalismin a format close to all readers.”Juan Manuel Burgos, professor, San Pablo University, Spain”I found it a very enjoyable and interesting read – a grand piece of work thatdoes the job of presenting what is, in many ways, quite a straightforwardand pragmatic philosophy to a wider audience which definitely deserves toknow much more about the subject.By bringing this vital and exciting tradition to public attention, this bookpresents a crucial challenge to the philosophical, political, and cultural statusquo. It does so, moreover, in a remarkably engaging and readable way.It may also prove to be a great contribution to the development of a popularpublic philosophical discourse.”Simon Smith, Independent Scholar, Haslemere, Surrey, UK