Master of Arts (MA)


Political Science

Document Type



This thesis is an exploration of political reality as understood by Eric Voegelin. Voegelin employed the revolutionary concepts found in ancient Greek noetic and Christian pneumatic philosophy that describe political reality and the means to know it. This thesis begins with a biographical sketch of Voegelin, the historical milieu that inspired his resistance to “unreality” and terms and symbols he uses to identify the spiritual sickness he believes is destroying Western Civilization’s traditional basis of order. It then examines Voegelin’s theories of consciousness, philosophy, and science fundamental to understanding reality. Given the extensive nature and volume of his work, a consolidation and explanation of it is offered, and an example on how to apply it is outlined. Critiques of Voegelin’s work are detailed to outline weaknesses in his theories and methods. This thesis concludes by defining political reality, how to use Voegelinian techniques to analyze reality, and how to live a life that cultivates the pursuit of human knowledge in keeping with Western philosophic traditions.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Secure the entire work for patent and/or proprietary purposes for a period of one year. Student has submitted appropriate documentation which states: During this period the copyright owner also agrees not to exercise her/his ownership rights, including public use in works, without prior authorization from LSU. At the end of the one year period, either we or LSU may request an automatic extension for one additional year. At the end of the one year secure period (or its extension, if such is requested), the work will be released for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Ellis Sandoz