French Modernist philosopher and theologian; b. Chazelet (Indre), Oct. 5, 1860; d. Paris, Oct. 6, 1932. After ordination (1886) as a member of the oratorians, he became a professor of philosophy at the College of Juilly (1887). He came under the influence of boutroux, at the Sorbonne, where he continued his studies. In his preoccupation with reconciling philosophy and religion, his thinking was influenced by blondel, pascal, and maine de biran. He was appointed superior at the École Massillon in Paris (1898) and of the college of Juilly (1900). From 1905 until 1913 he edited Annales de la philosophie chrétienne. As a follower of Blondel's immanence theories and a severe critic of Church authority and of scholastic philosophy (but not that of St. thomas aquinas), he developed a pragmatic personalist view of religion called moral dogmatism. His Essais de philosophie religieuse (1903) and Le Réalisme chrétien et l'idéalisme grec (1904) were put on the Index in 1906. The Annales and two of his other works, Le Témoignage des martyrs (1912) and Sur le chemin du Catholicisme (1913), were placed on the Index in 1913. When he was subsequently forbidden to publish his writings, he obeyed but continued to write. His Études sur Descartes and Études de philosophie cartésienne, published posthumously, were placed on the Index in 1936 and 1941, respectively. His private life was exemplary, and he died at peace with the Church, after receiving the Last Rites.
Bibliography: m. m. d'hendecourt, Essai sur la philosophie du Père Laberthonnière (Paris 1947). e. castelli, Laberthonnière (Milan 1927). j. p. golinas, La Restauration du Thomisme sous Léon XIII et les philosophies nouvelles: Études de la pensée de M. Blondel et du Père Laberthonnière (Washington 1959). i. daniele, Enciclopedia filosofica, 4 v. (Venice-Rome 1957) 2:1760–62.
[f. m. o'connor]