International Institute for Culture

Book Discussion Series: Dr. Bill Murphy discusses Tracey Rowland's "Culture and the Thomist Tradition after Vatican II"

March 19, 2004    7:00 PM       

Dates: Friday Evenings, February 20, March 19, April 16, 2004 
Time: 7:00 until 8:30 p.m. 
Discussion Leader: Dr. Bill Murphy 
Book: Culture and the Thomist Tradition After Vatican II, By Tracey Rowland 
Location: Ivy Hall of the International Institute for Culture.  
Cost: $5 per discussion for refeshments  
The Thomistic intellectual tradition, which builds upon St. Thomas Aquinas’s great 13th century synthesis of Scripture and Tradition with the wisdom of ancient Greece and Rome, has provided an indispensable point of reference for Catholic thought for several centuries. However, since the mid 20th-century, and especially the time of the Second Vatican Council, this intellectual tradition has experienced what philosopher Alasdair MacIntyre calls an “epistemological crisis.” In other words, there has been a widespread loss of confidence in the truth-bearing capacity of this intellectual tradition, with widespread implications for worship, doctrinal and moral teachings, and the broader life of the Church.  
Culture and the Thomist Tradition begins with an analysis of the roots of this crisis, centered in a lack of attention to the relation between Church, modern secular culture, and some of the philosophical presuppositions upon which it is built. It also includes a proposal for a development of the Thomistic tradition, meeting MacIntyre’s three criteria for overcoming an “epistemological crisis,” and thereby assisting the Church in fulfilling, more adequately, its role as salt and light in a challenging context. 
This discussion series will be moderated by Dr. Bill Murphy, who holds a doctorate from the John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family, is currently a professor of moral theology at St. Charles Borromeo Seminary, and has published widely in various theological journals in the United States, Europe, and Latin America. It will include the active participation of Dr. John Haas, the President of the International Institute for Culture and the National Catholic Bioethics Center; Dr Larry Chapp, Chairman of Theology at DeSales University; and other theologians and philosophers. Each session will begin with a brief overview of the reading followed by an open discussion in which anyone who has done the reading is welcome to participate. 
Culture and the Thomist Tradition is available at or at $28.95 (Paperback) 


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