Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Philosophy (MPhil)

Schools and Centres

Philosophy and Theology

First Supervisor

Dr Joe Naimo


This thesis argues that Positive Psychology, one of the newest branches of Psychology, conforms to sets of ideas about the human person which have been accepted from within the Western philosophical and scientific traditions, and that these ideas obstruct its dual ambitions to provide a balance to the weakness model in Psychology and to enhance human flourishing, since these require a comprehensive account of the human person. Heidegger’s work is nominated as a likely source of remedy, for three key reasons: Both systems of thought share superficial similarities which provide the basis for the clarification and development of key ideas within Positive Psychology. Further, Positive Psychology can benefit from Heidegger’s challenges to assumptions within Philosophy and the sciences. Finally, and most importantly, Heidegger’s work can supply the ontological underpinning which Positive Psychology needs in order to appreciate the human person in its entirety.

This thesis is presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Philosophy