Kevin L. HughesVillanova University
Bonaventure (d. 1274) was a pivotal figure whose complex responded effectively to the challenges of his day and inspired both theological and philosophical thought up to the present day. As a contemporary of fellow mendicant St Thomas Aquinas, Bonaventure also taught at the University of Paris and formulated an original approach to the new Aristotelian thought. Later known as the Seraphic Doctor, Bonaventure fused profound theological thought with heart-felt spirituality and set out a vision of the life and charism of the recent St Francis of Assisi to provide peace-making leadership for the new Franciscan order. Professor Kevin Hughes will introduce the complex and multifaceted thought of Bonaventure.
What can reason discover about God? Are there other possible ways to know God? Medieval Christians undertook great rational enterprises—including the sharp logic of Abelard and the grand system of Thomas Aquinas—as well as practiced experiential and contemplative modes of knowing, as did Bernard of Clairvaux. This course will examine how different preeminent medieval Christian thinkers saw the relationship between reason and wisdom, how to arrive at them, and so how to seek the face of God.
This series is cosponsored by the Calvert House Catholic Center, the Collegium Institute, the Harvard Catholic Center, the Nova Forum, the Saint Benedict Institute, the Beatrice Institute, and the Institute for Faith and Culture.
Thursday, May 28, 7PM
Meister Eckhart | Bernard McGinn (University of Chicago)
Thursday, June 4, 7PM
Nicholas of Cusa | David Albertson (University of Southern California)
Kevin L. Hughes is Chair of the Humanities Department and Professor in Theology and Religious Studies at Villanova University. His research concentrates on ancient and medieval Christian history, theology, and spirituality, and he has a particular interest in the Franciscan tradition. He completed his Ph.D in theology at the University of Chicago, and joined the faculty at Villanova Univarsity in 1997. Notable books of his include Constructing Antichrist: Paul, Biblical Commentary, and the Development of Doctrine in the Early Middle Ages (2005), and Church History: Faith Handed On (2001). He is currently working on a book on Saint Bonaventure's Collationes in Hexaëmeron,