‘Countercultural’ Message on Love, Relationships at Notre Dame Student Conference

Greg Peverill Conti

Edith Stein Project explores charity and relationships.

“Relationships and the Call to Love” was the theme of this year’s Edith Stein Project, a two day conference put on by students at the University of Notre Dame, according to National Catholic Register.

The Edith Stein project was formed in 2004 in response to The Vagina Monologues play that was being held on Notre Dame’s campus.  Notre Dame has not hosted the Monologues in several years, but the play continues on other Catholic college campuses, as previously reported.

The conference attracted students and faculty from various colleges, with approximately 60 of the more than 350 attendees traveling from other states.The Register reports:

“One of our main goals is to combat the secular pop culture and ‘so-college’ images of femininity,” said [Notre Dame senior Madeline Gillen, who, along with Caroline Reuter is the co-chairwoman of the Edith Stein Project]. “Rather, we seek to present a more integrated view of femininity” that accounts for human dignity and explores what it means to be authentic men and women.

[Alasdair] MacIntyre is perhaps the most prominent living Catholic philosopher. A former Notre Dame professor, MacIntyre opened the conference as its keynote speaker, discussing Edith Stein’s dissertation, On the Problem of Empathy.

MacIntyre, who has written a book on Stein (Edith Stein: A Philosophical Prologue, 1913-1922), skillfully unpacked her philosophy, a difficult task that Gillen says “really got the conference up and running.”

Courtesy of Catholic Education Daily of The Cardinal Newman Society