American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly

Volume 93, Issue 1, Winter 2019

Randall G. Colton
Pages 101-127

St. Thomas, Teaching, and the Intellectual Virtue of Art

Applying Thomas Aquinas’s account of the intellectual virtue of art to teaching yields valuable results both for those who wish to understand teaching better and those looking for models of the approach to virtue epistemology Roberts and Wood call “regulative.” To vindicate that claim, this article proceeds in four steps: First, I introduce Thomas’s taxonomy of the intellectual virtues in light of a pair of distinctions between practical and speculative knowledge and between immanent and transient operations. In the second section, I consider teaching’s relation to each of Thomas’s intellectual virtues and argue that it belongs most properly to art. Next, I describe Thomas’s taxonomy of art by distinguishing among four cross-cutting categories that characterize species of that virtue. Finally, I outline an account of the art of teaching that treats it, with respect to those categories, as performative, deliberative, cooperative, and intersubjective.