As a priest, a professor of ethics, and a
bishop Karol Wojtyla wrote a multitude of philosophical and
theological articles on ethics.He also wrote poetry and plays. Some
are available in English. Most will have Karol Wojtyla as the
author, though recent editions may list John Paul II. The most
significant are below.
First published writing:
Apostol (The Apostle). Krakow: Tygodnik Powszechny (a
weekly magazine), 1949. An article about his friend and mentor in
the life of prayer, Jan Tyranowski.
First published poetry:
Matka (Mother). Krakow: Tygodnik Powszechny, 1950.
First Doctoral Dissertation:
Questio de fide apud S. Joannem a Cruce (The Question of Faith
according to St. John of the Cross). Warsaw: Collectanea Theologica,
1950. The Holy Father's dissertation accomplished at the Pontifical
University of St. Thomas Aquinas (Angelicum) in Rome.
Faith According to St. John of the Cross. Ignatius Press, 1981.
(out of print)
Second Doctoral Dissertation:
System etyczny Maksa Schelera jako srodek do opracowania etyki
chrzescijanskiej (The ethical system of Max Scheler as means of
constructing a Christian ethics). Krakow: Polonia Sacra, 1953. The
Pope's dissertation to be admitted to university teaching written on
the subject of the ethical system devised by German philosopher Max
Scheler. The Pope was critical of the results Scheler achieved but
found the phenomenological method which he used of some usefulness.
First published book:
Milosc i odpowiedzialnosc (Love and Responsibility). Lublin:
Sudium etyczne, 1960.
Love and Responsibility. Ignatius Press (1-800-651-1531). The
fruit of his pastoral experience with young people, the Holy Father
shows the basis for Catholic sexual morality and addresses such
important issues as attraction, desire, sentiment, sensuality,
shame, friendship and love.
Major Philosophical Work:
Osaba i czyn (Person and Act). Krakow: Pol. Tow.
Teologiczne, 1969. The Holy Father develops his philosophical
approach to the person, which involves the use of the metaphysics of
St. Thomas Aquinas for all that is objective in man and the
phenomenological method for the study of man's personal
The Acting Person. Boston: D. Reidel Publishing Co., 1979
(out of print).
Book on implementing the Second Vatican Council:
Upodstaw odnowy. Studium o realizacji Vaticanum II
(Sources of renewal. Studies on Realizing Vatican II). Krakow: Pol.
Tow. Teologiczne, 1972. Intended as a vade-mecum (a take along
book), to guide the pastoral synod of the Archdiocese of Krakow in
their deliberations, and introducing the reader to the documents of
Vatican II and how they can be implemented as a response of faith to
God's action through the Council.
Sources of Renewal. The Implementation of Vatican II. San
Francisco: Harper and Row, 1979.
Retreat Given to Pope Paul VI:
Sign of Contradiction. New York: Seabury, 1979. The Lenten
Retreat preached in 1976 by Karol Cardinal Wojtyla to Pope Paul VI
and the papal household.
His Most Famous Play:
Przed sklepem jubilera. Medytacja o Sakraemcie Malzenstwa
przechodzaca chwilami w dramat by Andrzej Jawien (his literary
pseudonym). Krakow: Znak, 1960.
The Jeweler's Shop: A Meditation on the Sacrament of
Matrimony, Passing on Occasion into a Drama. San Francisco:
Ignatius Press (1-800-651-1531), 1992. Also, available as a video,
with Burt Lancaster in the lead, from Ignatius Press and others.
Easter Vigil & Other Poems. New York: Random House, 1979.
The Collected Plays and Writings on Theatre. University of
California Press, 1987. (out of print)
Of use to researchers is a bibliography of the pre-pontifical
writings of Karol Wojtyla (1949-1978) and books to 1978 about him or
his writings. Karol Wojtyla negli Scritti. Bibliografia. Vatican
City: Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 1980.