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The Bernard J. Lonergan Institute's Dialogue on Lonergan’s Macroeconomics
Seton Hall > News & Events 

Bernard J LonerganOn April 9, 2014, Monsignor Richard Liddy, Director of the Bernard J. Lonergan Institute, hosted a webinar in which sixteen scholars from across the world discussed Bernard Lonergan's ideas on Macroeconomics. Lonergan (1904-1984) was a Canadian philosopher-theologian who authored two works on macroeconomics: For a New Political Economy and Macroeconomic Dynamics, both published by the University of Toronto Press.

According to Msgr. Liddy, "Fr. Lonergan's very sophisticated vision of a properly functioning economy can help us take charge of our communal future. 'Ideas have consequences,' and this is particularly relevant to economics. Ideas about how the actual functioning of the economy relates to human living and human flourishing can massively influence our economic choices - for the good or for ill. That is why Lonergan wrote his two works on macroeconomics and the webinar was an introduction to those ideas."

In the webinar, Dr. Paul St. Amour presented his studies on "Cosmopolis and Economy: Toward a Critical Human Science of Macroeconomics." St. Amour is the Chair of the Philosophy Department at St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia. Dr. Paul Hoyt-O’Connor, Director of the Center for Undergraduate Fellowships and Research at George Washington University, gave a response to the speaker. Afterwards, the conversation opened up for questions, comments and general discussion.

The presenters and participants addressed Lonergan's ideas of optimal economic sustainability and Cosmopolis, the idea that one should take responsibility for economic history both in prosperity and in crisis. Dr. St. Amour argued that Lonergan's ideas on Cosmopolis could present us with an idea of what a successfully functioning economy would look like.

Participants included individuals from across Seton Hall University, the United States and the world, including two scholars from Mexico and from Rome. The webinar promoted understanding of Lonergan's teachings through reaching out to a number of individuals, despite physical boundaries and time differences. "The idea of being in physically different places and yet being able to share words is very reassuring and in many ways exciting," attendee Andrea Bartoli, Dean of the School of Diplomacy and International Relations, commented. "I think that is something very nice about the implication of being co-present to the moment and really creating conditions for us to have conversations over time."

This event is the first of a series of webinars that the Bernard J. Lonergan Institute will be hosting. For more information on the next webinar taking place on Thursday, May 22 from 2 to 4 p.m. or to learn how to join the conversation, contact Msgr. Richard Liddy at The next webinar will discuss efforts to implement Lonergan's notions on economics in the Basque region of Spain.

About the Bernard J. Lonergan Institute

The Bernard J. Lonergan Institute was launched in 2006 by the Center for Catholic Studies. The mission of the Bernard J. Lonergan Institute at Seton Hall University is to make known the work of the Canadian philosopher-theologian Bernard J. Lonergan, S.J., and its implications for contemporary culture. Besides being a research center with all the significant holdings of the primary and secondary literature on Bernard Lonergan, the center will also serve to implement Lonergan’s vision of Catholic theology integrating all of modern culture through programs in the natural and human sciences, historical scholarship, and the professions. It will serve as a locus of cultural healing, helping to implement Lonergan’s vision of "Cosmopolis," that is, a culture liberated from bias.

The Institute sponsors scholarship, programs, lectures and conferences centered around Lonergan's work. The Institute contains all of Lonergan's published works, copies of his most significant unpublished writings, doctoral dissertations on Lonergan's work, the most significant secondary literature on Lonergan and Lonergan's "memorabilia," including letters and photos on display.
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About the Center For Catholic Studies

Founded at Seton Hall University in 1997, The Center for Catholic Studies is dedicated to fostering a dialogue between the Catholic intellectual tradition and all areas of study and contemporary culture, through scholarly research and publications and ongoing programs for faculty, students, and the general public. In 2001, the Center conducted the annual faculty summer seminar, "The Core of the Core," which originated the present University Core Curriculum. The Center also developed the undergraduate degree program in Catholic Studies with its major, minor and certificate, which in 2012 became the Department of Catholic Studies. The Center continues to support the Department with scholarship aid and its ongoing program of co-curricular activities.

Focusing on the central role of the faculty, the Center is the sponsor of regular Faculty Development programs, including lectures, seminars and retreats. The Center also administers two national faculty development programs: Collegium: A Colloquy on Faith and Intellectual Life, and The Lilly Fellows Program.
The Center maintains a global focus in international scholarship and is the home of the G.K. Chesterton Institute for Faith & Culture, as well as the Bernard J. Lonergan Institute. The Institutes offer opportunities for study and research, as well as ongoing programs related to faith and culture. In addition, the Micah Institute for Business and Economics concentrates on communicating Catholic Social Teaching and ethics to business education at Seton Hall and the wider business community. The Center also publishes the prestigious Chesterton Review, The Lonergan Review, and Arcadia, a student journal.
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For more information please contact:
Richard Liddy
(973) 275-2407


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