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"Kierkegaard, Augustine, and the Catholic Tradition"

October 27-28, 2016-Villanova University


Kierkegaard, Augustine, and the Catholic Tradition

Villanova University

October 27-28, 2016

During the first half of the twentieth century, there were a number of efforts to put Søren Kierkegaard’s thinking in conversation with the Catholic tradition, from the Kulturkritik of Theodor Haecker to the metaphysical ruminations of Erich Przywara to the theological projects of figures such as Hans Urs von Balthasar, Yves Congar, and Henri de Lubac. These endeavors, while seemingly forgotten in the latter half of the twentieth century, have served as both inspiration and provocation in recent years, as articles, panels, and monographs dedicated to “Kierkegaard and Catholicism” have seen a resurgence. This conference aims to promote this development by putting Kierkegaard in conversation with Augustine of Hippo, in addition to exploring points of agreement and disagreement between Kierkegaard and the Catholic tradition writ large.


The conference will be held on the campus of Villanova University, and it will feature papers on a range of issues related to its overarching theme. Such issues might include:


o   The importance of rhetoric in theological writing

o   Theological anthropology

o   The relationship between nature and grace

o   Biblical hermeneutics

o   Pedagogy, particularly in a Christian context

o   The spiritual life, with a focus on different historical “movements” (Neoplatonism, die Deutsche Mystik, Pietism, etc.) or “questions” (sainthood, mystical experience, apophaticism, etc.)

o   The relationship between philosophy and theology

o   Matters of church and state


Proposals on these or other related topics should be emailed to Christopher Barnett (Department of Theology and Religious Studies, and John Doody (Department of Philosophy, They should include a title and an abstract of roughly 500 words. The deadline for submissions is March 31, 2016.


In addition to the speakers selected from the Call for Papers, this conference will also include the following invitees:


o   Lee C. Barrett, Lancaster Theological Seminary

o   John D. Caputo, Syracuse University and Villanova University

o   Clare Carlisle, King’s College London

o   Vincent McCarthy, St. Joseph’s University

o   Cyril O’Regan, University of Notre Dame

o   George Pattison, University of Glasgow

Rooms have been blocked at the following hotels
The Radnor Hotel


The Villanova Conference Center


Be sure to mention Kierkegaard & Augustine Conference/VCLE to get the discounted rate.