History of Philosophy Forum
“From the point of view of the multiplicity by which the diverse aspects of the search for truth are manifested, it is better to have Plato, Aristotle, Kant and St. Thomas, than to have St. Thomas alone, even though, personally, we would be willing to dispense with all the others for St. Thomas. It is better to have Ruysbroeck and the pseudo-Dionysius, Gertrude and Catherine of Siena, St. Theresa and St. John of the Cross, than to have St. John of the Cross alone.”—Jacques Maritain, The Person and the Common Good
The “history of philosophy” is the story of the great human quest to understand our world and our place in it, through the use of reason. The History of Philosophy Forum is Notre Dame’s hub for research activity in the history of philosophy, broadly construed to include Christian, Jewish, and Muslim intellectual traditions, intellectual history, history of political thought, history of the study of the natural world, and more. At the University of Notre Dame, an exceptionally large community of scholars in these areas makes us one of the top locations in the United States for research and studies of these traditions of human reason and the wisdom they continue to offer us today. Learn more about the grant opportunities, events, and research collaborations sponsored through this initiative:
Collaboration with the Pontifical Academy of St. Thomas Aquinas
With its storied history as a hub of research in the world of Thomistic studies, the Jacques Maritain Center is proud of its ongoing collaboration with the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy of St. Thomas Aquinas, established in 1879 by Pope Leo XIII.
Undergraduate Thomistic Reading Group
In an address the Notre Dame College of Arts & Letters, Jacques Maritain highlighted undergraduate education as the appropriate time for, "the development of natural intelligence," wherein, "the end is to cause the student to understand, to grasp the meaning and the basic truths of theology and philosophy." Taking this advice to heart, the Jacques Maritain Center undertakes to form undergraduates in the study of philosophy and theology, treating Thomas Aquinas as an exemplary guide. Toward that end, the Center sponsors a reading group on a special theme each semester. Details about the reading group for Spring 2024 are forthcoming.