George Doyle

Catholicism and Politics in a Fallen World:  Understanding Human Imperfection as Relates to Political Institutions  

Nickolas Becker, Advisor
Scott Johnson
Claire Haeg

George’s research in his own words:

In Part I, I make an argument rooted in Thomas Aquinas's writing on human nature in support of democracy as best reflecting the tension in human nature between being created as good and drawn to evil in original sin. In Part II, I use Pew Research data to quantitatively examine religious factors in party affiliation among US Catholics.

What inspired you to select your thesis topic?

I wanted to work on a project that encapsulated both my majors, and I wanted to do so at a high academic level. With theology, I spent a lot of my research with Augustine and Thomas Aquinas and I became fascinated with their views on human nature and politics. In political science, I did a study sophomore year on Islam around the world and support for democracy and I wanted to apply similar methodology to my own faith and US politics.                

What advice would you give to future CSBSJU Thesis Scholars?

I would recommend undergraduate research in a heartbeat. The skills and experience I've gotten are invaluable, and it's a great opportunity to spend time in college pursuing something you love. Utilize library resources, bounce ideas off of your advisors, and have fun.