J. Budziszewski

Fellow, Center for Science and Culture

Professor Budziszewski is a professor of government and philosophy at the University of Texas, Austin, where he also teaches courses in the law school and the religious studies department. He specializes in political philosophy, ethical philosophy, legal philosophy, and the interaction of religion with philosophy. Among his research interests are classical natural law, virtue ethics, conscience and moral self deception, the institution of the family in relation to political and social order, religion in public life, and the problem of toleration.

He maintains a personal website and blog at The Underground Thomist, and his books include The Resurrection of Nature: Political Theory and the Human Character (Cornell, 1986), The Nearest Coast of Darkness: A Vindication of the Politics of Virtues (Cornell, 1988), True Tolerance: Liberalism and the Necessity of Judgment (Transaction, 1992), Written on the Heart: The Case for Natural Law (InterVarsity, 1997), The Revenge of Conscience: Politics and the Fall of Man (2d ed. Wipf and Stock, 2010), Evangelicals in the Public Square (Baker Academic, 2006; Kindle On Demand, 2019), Natural Law for Lawyers (Blackstone Fellowship, 2006; Kindle On Demand, 2019), The Line Through the Heart: Natural Law as Fact, Theory, and Sign of Contradiction (Intercollegiate Studies Institute Press, 2009), What We Can't Not Know: A Guide (2d ed. Ignatius, 2011), On the Meaning of Sex(Intercollegiate Studies Institute Press, 2012), Commentary on Thomas Aquinas’s Treatise on Law (Cambridge University Press, 2014), its free online partner volume, Companion to the Commentary (Cambridge University Press, 2014), Commentary on Thomas Aquinas's Virtue Ethics (Cambridge University Press, 2017), and Commentary on Thomas Aquinas’s Treatise on Happiness and Ultimate Purpose (Cambridge University Press, 2020).


God’s Grandeur

The Catholic Case for Intelligent Design
We are not some casual and meaningless product of evolution. Each of us is the result of a thought of God. Each of us is willed, each of us is loved, each of us is necessary. Pope Benedict XVI The world — indeed, the universe — is charged with grandeur. Everything speaks of its beauty, power, and purpose — of its exquisite and intelligent design. Yet many scientists today flatly deny that the world was intelligently designed. Even some Christian scientists and theologians downplay or deny the evidence nature supplies of intelligent design, especially in biology. This thought-provoking anthology shows why they are wrong, why it matters, and why intelligent design provides a compelling way to reconcile science and faith in today’s culture. God’s Grandeur challenges the

What We Can’t Not Know

In this new revised edition of his groundbreaking work, Professor J. Budziszewski questions the modern assumption that moral truths are unknowable. With clear and logical arguments he rehabilitates the natural law tradition and restores confidence in a moral code based upon human nature.  What We Can’t Not Know explains the rational foundation of what we all really know to be right and wrong and shows how that foundation has been kicked out from under western society. Having gone through stages of atheism and nihilism in his own search for truth, Budziszewski understands the philosophical and personal roots of moral relativism. With wisdom born of both experience and rigorous intellectual inquiry, he offers a firm foothold to those who are attempting either to

Testimony by J. Budziszewski to Texas SBOE

Honorable members of the Texas State Board of Education, my name is J. Budziszewski. I am a full Professor in both the Department of Government and the Department of Philosophy at the University of Texas at Austin. In my twenty-two years as a scholar of political philosophy, I have written six books and am a nationally recognized authority in my field of specialization. The subjects that I teach most often are the tradition of natural rights and natural law, the problem of toleration, the Constitutional thought of the American Founders, and the influence of religion on law and politics. Although my teaching has included the philosophy of science, I am obviously not a natural scientist myself. Why then am I here? I speak today in support of the principle that young people should be

Natural Born Lawyers

Review of eight recent books on Natural Law
Books reviewed The Natural Law:A Study in Legal and Social History and Philosophy by Heinrich Albert Rommen, Liberty Fund, 306 pp., $27.In Defense of Natural Law by Robert P. George, Oxford University Press, 354 pp., $65.Aquinas’s Theory of Natural Law: An Analytic Reconstruction by Anthony J. Lisska Oxford University Press, 336 pp., $24.95.Natural Law in Judaism by David Novak Cambridge University Press, 210 pp., $54.95.A Preserving Grace: Protestants, Catholics, and Natural Law edited by Michael Cromartie, Eerdmans, 201 pp., $20.Narrative and the Natural Law: An Interpretation of Thomistic Ethics by Pamela M. Hall, University of Notre Dame Press, 168 pp., $16 paper.Natural Law and Contemporary Public Policy by David F. Forte, Georgetown University Press, 416 pp., $65.Feminist

The Revenge of Conscience

Things are getting worse very quickly now. The list of what we are required to approve is growing ever longer. Consider just the domain of sexual practice. First we were to approve sex before marriage, then without marriage, now against marriage. First with one, then with a series, now with a crowd. First with the other sex, then with the same. First between adults, then between children, then between adults and children. The last item has not been added yet, but will be soon: you can tell from the change in language, just as you can tell the approach of winter from the change in the color of leaves. As any sin passes through its stages from temptation, to toleration, to approval, its name is first euphemized, then avoided, then forgotten. A colleague tells me that some of his fellow

Just the Facts, Please

Here's what did happen. The Board did adopt new statewide science testing standards. Curriculum was left where it had been, in the hands of local districts.