Thursday, February 11, 2010

Edith Stein Project

In doing work on the implementation of Ex Corde Ecclesiae recently I have divided the evidences for the "Catholicity" of the university into three categories: policy, programming, and culture. Policy would include such factors as mission statement, hiring practices, regulations on student government, criteria for choosing honorees of various kinds, what health services does, etc. Programming might include institutes, majors, publications (press, journals), special collections, scholarships, etc. Finally, culture would not only include the visual culture of the place, but also the spontaneous expressions of Catholic intellectual and cultural life by faculty and students. For instance, student organizations and faculty research. One might look at not only lively devotional life (very important evidence for robust Catholicism, no matter what people say about "pietism."), but also what the faculty are doing on their own initiative (such as the Notre Dame Center for Ethics and Culture, which is not a program of the University, but a faculty initiative that ND has approved of and allowed on campus without initial University funding).

Whatever one can say about Notre Dame's Catholicity in the area of policy and programming, there is certainly a lively Catholic culture among many of the students and faculty on Campus. Even if it is a minority, it is a loud and highly visible minority. Other "Catholic" colleges and universities consider such initiatives to be tolerable, but not worthy of encouragement. If such initiatives become too popular or are perceived as too powerful on campus or in the broader society, some administrative means is devised to reign it in. Many Catholic faculty on many Catholic campuses feel isolated and thwarted in their efforts to make the Catholic intellectual tradition a force in the everyday life of their department, college, and university.

Just one example of what is possible on a campus that actually believes in the diverse expressions of Catholicity they claim to encourage, the students at Notre Dame are holding this weekend their annual "Edith Stein Project" conference. The topic for this year is "No Man is an Island: Creature, Culture, and Community." The Project, sponsored by a student organization called The Identity Project of Notre Dame, began five years ago as a Catholic response to the V-Monologues. If you are going to be in the South Bend area on Friday and Saturday, or if you can figure out a way to get there, you should consider taking in one of these talks. Attending the talks is free. Registration is not necessary, although you can register and get meals, name tags, a folder, etc.

Here is a list of the talks. As you can see my old teacher, Dr. David Schindler will be there.
  • Keynote Address – “Edith Stein: A Woman of Wisdom Whose Time Has Come,” Dr. Keith Egan
  • “The Counter Cultural Comeback of Large Families: Picture the Possibilities,” Jenn Giroux and Fr. Tom Euteneuer
  • “How to Be a Father in a Fatherless World” (followed by Fatherless signing), Brian J. Gail
  • “On Spiritual Maternity: Edith Stein’s Search for the Soul of Woman in European Literature, ” Dr. Jane Rodeheffer
  • “Empathy, Femininity, and Attention: The Writings of Stein and Weil,” 'Empathizing with God’s Point of View’: Edith Stein’s Ethical Empathy and Robert Gordon’s Hierarchy of Empathic Forms," Sr. Ann Astell
  • "Simone Weil on Attention," Adam Sims
  • “Feminist and Feminine: Edith Stein's Teachings on the Nature of Women, ” Lisa Folkerth
  • NFP vs. Contraception: What’s the Big Deal?,” Lisa Everett
  • “Women and the Shaping of American Culture: From Abigail Adams to Laura Ingalls Wilder,” Dr. Susan Hanssen
  • “Giving Yourself without Squandering Yourself,” Dr. Jules Van Schaijik
  • Mass, celebrated by Bishop John D’Arcy
  • Pizza Dinner and Discussion with Bishop D’Arcy On Human Relationships and Pastoral Care
  • Film – “Almost Evening”
  • “Masculine and Feminine Virtue” Student Essay Contest Winners Matthew Holbreich, Andrew Prevot, Carly O’Connor
  • “Power of Community – The Fr. Jim Karaffa Business Academy for Women,” Michael Bohnert
  • “When Push Comes to Shove: Victimization and Vulnerability in Abusive Relationships,” Natassia Kwan
  • “Let’s Get Physical, Metaphysical: An Integrated Understanding of the Pill, Jello Shots, and Eating Disorders, ” Caitlin Shaughnessy Dwyer, Caroline Lashutka, and Anamaría Scaperlanda-Ruiz
  • “The Middle Point Between iPods and Facebook: Lessons in Community and Value from Edith Stein,” Gloria L. E. Zúñiga y Postigo
  • "The Economy Needs Ethics: A Brief History of Christian Economics,” Dr. Kevin Schmiesing
  • “Stretched yet Unbroken: The Journey of Married Motherhood,” Lisa Everett
  • “Burning yet Unconsumed: The Paradox of Virginal Motherhood,” Sr. Margaret Mary Mitchel and Sr. M. Benedicta Duna
  • “From Movies to the Monastery: Vocation as Expansion of the Heart,” Mother Dolores Hart
  • “Homosexuality and Identity,” Melinda Selmys
  • “Universal Call to Holiness: Homosexual Persons in the Church,” Panel Discussion
  • “Life, Family, and ‘Integral Human Development’: The Anthropological Unity of Caritas in Veritate,” Dr. David Schindler
  • “John Paul II: Love and the Body, ” Dr. Adrian Reimers
  • “Catholic Courtship: A school for true communion,” Katie van Schaijik
  • “The Woodstock Monologues: Lessons Learned about Life, Relationships, and the Real Meaning of Love,” Eileen Love

1 comment:

Nate said...

Melinda Selmys is talking right now. Protests, of course. Definitely interesting.