Themes

2016

Ecology

 Man is at once a part of nature and its steward, and natural ecology and “human ecology” therefore stand or fall together. This four-part series explores major themes in the contemporary ecological debate: man’s relationship with his environment, the land he was instructed to “till and keep”; animals, which can either be companions or dinner; the relationship we have with “stuff” and whether we have too much of it; and the place of the body in creation.

2015

Education

This four-part series takes up what Benedict XVI called the “emergency” of education. A child of course, has to be brought up, and led out (e-ducare) into the world. But what does this mean against the dominant backdrop of calling into question the essential features of childhood, including, especially now, the fact of being a boy or a girl? What exactly is the child’s relation to the world, and how exactly is that relation mediated by the “first educators” of the child? What then, does it mean to be schooled in the disciplines? Is education merely “vocational training” or training in a vocation, and learning how to be awakened by (called by) reality in its many fascinating dimensions? Finally, what is the place of technology in education at all its levels?

2014

Health and Medicine

The Church's teaching on the beginning and end of human life is not a collection of arbitrary rules, but a mystagogical initiation into the sacred vision of triune generosity shining through human birth, reproduction, and death. It is no wonder, then, that the attack on the human person in contemporary society most often coincides with one of these milestones at which we are the most vulnerable, indeed, the most human. This four-part series examines these themes, as well as the particular vulnerability and ability found at the heart of disability. Included here are the papers from the 2014 conference "The A.R.T. of Reproduction: Re-conceiving the Human Person."

2013

Home and Family

The family home is the place where the child is brought up. It is where he or she is first introduced to reality, beginning with the reality of familial relations themselves and their primacy with respect to the State and the Market. In this three-part series, we look at the current challenges to the home as a place of life, nourishment, education, play, work, even industry. We look at motherhood and work, technology in the home, and the growing suburban isolation of the home.

2012

Recovering Origins

To know ourselves—and become fully who we are—we have to look back to our origins. The word that seems most apt here is anamnesis, a remembering that connects our present to the past. In this four-part series, we look at the various ways in which the “recovery of origins” is threatened. Divorce, reproductive technology, same-sex unions, and absent fatherhood, each, in different ways, obscure this remembering and with it the awareness of who we are: the fruit of an embodied unity in difference, and (within that) a gift from the Source of all Being.