Vrijheidsbegrippen in de leer van Anselmus van Canterbury (1033–1109)

Klaas Hendrik Waterlander

    Research output: PhD ThesisPhD-Thesis - Research and graduation internal

    316 Downloads (Pure)


    In De libertate arbitrii Anselm consequently separates freedom from sin and the possibility to sin, as these lead to unfreedom, which is why they should not be considered within freedom. The question is if Anselm will honour this rigorous distinction later on, for instance in his later summary of his theological thinking: De concordia. This dissertation wants to demonstrate that this indeed the case. Other aspects that are joined with the concept of freedom are also in play, so is the important insight that God’s management and foresight do not diminish freedom, it assumed freedom. From this different approach to the concept of freedom follows the research question to be investigated: What does a renewed vision on the concepts of freedom in their theological -historical context used by Anselm bring and how can this vision shed a new light on the present debate about freedom? This question is asked to the theology of the Reformation, especially to the Reformed Scholastic Theology. Then the discussion is with the followers of the libertarian freedom, who base freedom on the existence of choices. Especially Katharin Rogers views Anselm as the forerunner of this modern concept of freedom. In this dissertation an opposing stance is taken to this vision. Anselm’s concept of freedom appears to have a unique characteristic: it stimulates the reflection on how people their inner freedom is to be found, by strengthening the discernment. While, it becomes clear we cannot attain the realisation of this by our own abilities solely, hence need the changing force of God’s grace, the alia gratia.
    Original languageEnglish
    Awarding Institution
    • Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
    • van der Kooi, Kees, Supervisor
    • Wisse, Maarten, Supervisor
    • de Boer, Erik, Co-supervisor
    Award date4 Nov 2021
    Place of PublicationEnschede
    Publication statusPublished - 4 Nov 2021


    • Anselm of Canterbury
    • Freedom
    • Compatibilism
    • Libertarian Freedom
    • Determinism
    • Foreknowledge
    • Scholastics


    Dive into the research topics of 'Vrijheidsbegrippen in de leer van Anselmus van Canterbury (1033–1109)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this