Dombrowski Publishes A History of the Concept of God

Written by Laura Paskin
February 29, 2016

Philosophy Professor Daniel A. Dombrowski explores the history of the concept of God from the perspective of neoclassical, or process, theism in his latest book A History of the Concept of God: A Process Approach (SUNY Press 2016).

“The book begins with a survey of texts of the classical theists and their roots in ancient Greek philosophy and moves into the contributions of philosophers from the Renaissance to the present,” Dombrowski said.  

The key figures in this history are Plato, who ironically provided the philosophical basis both for classical and neoclassical concepts, and three great figures in process theism: Henri Bergson, Alfred North Whitehead, and Charles Hartshorne.

Dombrowski, who joined the College of Arts and Sciences faculty in 1988, has written some of the most important books and scholarly papers in his discipline, which he modestly calls “a series of footnotes to Plato.” His prolific efforts include more than 170 published journal articles and 18 books, including Rethinking the Ontological Argument (Cambridge University Press) and Contemporary Athletics and Ancient Greek Ideals (University of Chicago Press). His main areas of intellectual interest are history of philosophy, philosophy of religion from a neoclassical or process perspective, and ethics especially animal rights issues.

In addition, Dombrowski edits the journals Process Studies and Process Studies Supplements, its electronic counterpart, both published by the Center for Process Studies at Claremont Graduate University. He also serves as a member of editorial boards or boards of directors for the Journal of Animal Ethics, Studia Whiteheadiana, Christian Vegetarian Association, Oxford Centre for Animal Ethics and Catholics for Choice, among others.

In October 2015, he testified before the European Union Parliament as part of a forum on "Religion, Human Rights and a Secular Europe." The forum brought together elected officials, journalists, and others to discuss the rise of anti-human rights extreme religious lobby groups in European institutions.

The College of Arts and Sciences, the largest college in Seattle University, offers 80 undergraduate degrees, 7 master’s degrees, and 3 graduate certificates.