Vol 3, No 1, 2004

The Ethics of the Gift: According to Aquinas, Derrrida and Marion

Brian Johnstone CSsR

Abstract

This article develops a philosophical-ethical theory of the "Gift," drawing on Jean Luc Marion and Jacques Derrida. Western ontology is then understood from this theory of Gift, where the self-other relationship is given primacy over the more traditional subject-object relationship. This theory then forms the framework of understanding Jesus Christ's self-giving of his life for others. Finally, this leads into Aquinas’ theology of the Holy Spirit as God's self-Gift, experienced in the life of grace by creatures.