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Symposium on Caritas in Veritate

Apr 28 2010 3:30pm
Swift Hall, 3rd Floor Lecture
1025 E 58th St.
Chicago, IL 60637
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David Nirenberg

University of Chicago

Patrick Deneen

University of Notre Dame

William T. Cavanaugh

DePaul University

Published upon the heels of the global financial collapse of 2008, Benedict XVI’s social encyclical, Caritas in Veritate, has been received with great controversy in America. Conservatives have criticized the encyclical’s indictment of neoliberal policies while progressives have severed the encyclical’s social concerns from their origin in the sanctity of human life. This panel discussion of Caritas in Veritate will consider the encyclical in light of the tradition of Catholic social teaching, the political difficulties facing economic reform, and the challenge of inter-religious dialogue.

David Nirenberg is Deborah R. and Edgar D. Jannotta Professor in the John U. Nef Committee on Social Thought, the Department of History, and in the College. His research and writing focuses on social relations between Jews, Christians, and Muslims in Spain and the Mediterranean during the Medieval period. His published works include Communities of Violence: Persecution of Minorities in the Middle Ages and the forthcoming The Figure of the Jew: from Ancient Egypt to the Present.


Patrick J. Deneen is the David A. Potenziani Memorial Associate Professor of Constitutional Studies at the University of Notre Dame. He holds a B.A. in English literature and a Ph.D. in Political Science from Rutgers University. Before coming to Notre Dame, he taught at Princeton University and Georgetown University. He is the author and editor of several books and numerous articles and reviews and has delivered invited lectures around the country and several foreign nations on the history of political thought, American political thought, religion and politics, and literature and politics. His books include Democratic Faith, Conserving America? Thoughts on Present Discontents, and most recently Why Liberalism Failed (Yale University Press, 2018).


William T. Cavanaugh is a Professor of Catholic Studies and Director of the Center for World Catholicism and Intercultural Theology at DePaul University. He holds an M.A. from Cambridge University and a PhD from Duke University. His major areas of research have to do with the Church’s encounter with social, political, and economic realities. Cavanaugh has published numerous books and articles, including Migrations of the Holy: Theologies of State and Church, The Myth of Religious Violence: Secular Ideology and the Roots of Modern Conflict, and Field Hospital: the Church’s Engagement in Markets, Politics, and Conflict.