Humans are lovers, and yet a good deal of pedagogical theory, Christian or otherwise, assumes an anthropology at odds with human nature, fixed in a model of humans as “thinking things”.
Turning to Augustine, or at least Augustine in conversation with Aquinas, Martin Heidegger, the overlooked Jesuit thinker Bernard Lonergan, and the important contemporary Charles Taylor, this book provides a normative vision for Christian higher education. A phenomenological reappropriation of human subjectivity reveals an authentic order to love, even when damaged by sin, and loves, made authentic by grace, allow the intellectually, morally, and religiously converted person to attain an integral unity. Properly understanding the integral relation between love and the fullness of human life overcomes the split between intellectual and moral formation, allowing transformed subjects – authentic lovers – to live, seek, and work towards the values of a certain kind of cosmopolitanism.
Christian universities exist to make cosmopolitans, properly understood, namely, those persons capable of living authentically. In other words, this text gives a fully rounded account of human flourishing, rooted in a phenomenological account of the human as basis for the mission of the university.
Thinkers or Lovers: A Brief Introduction
Part One: The Order of Authentic Love and Intellectual Conversion
1. Noetic Exegesis and the Authentic Intellect
2. Martin Heidegger, Charles Taylor, and the Caring Person
3. Bernard Lonergan, Intellectual Conversion, and Authentic Love
Part Two: Educating for Moral and Religious Conversion
4. Disorder and Revolt: The Effects of Sin
5. The Graciousness of Being-There: Moral and Religious Conversion
Part Three: Educating for Value: Authentic Humans and the Order of Love
6. Value Ethics: Forming Moral Agents
7. Cosmopolis: Value, Justice, Authenticity
Conclusion: An Education for Our Time
Endorsements and Reviews
Here is a valuable contribution to Christian reflection on the foundational problems of education and spiritual order. Cone and Snell are alive to the dynamics of love, wonder, and bias in the unfolding of the human spirit. They creatively reappropriate and enrich a great tradition to propose a compelling vision for Christian higher education. Anyone serious about cultural renewal will profit from this book.
Jeremy D. Wilkins, Associate Professor, Regis College at the University of Toronto
Authentic Cosmopolitanism is an important contribution to the ongoing discussions and debates about the institutional goods of the university and their cultural function in modern life. It is, on one hand, a very serviceable and dialogical introduction to the thought of Bernard Lonergan, but is also, on the other, an intervention into a much broader conversation. … [The book] provides practitioners with the theoretical elements they need to return to practical with a greater understanding of their tasks.
Ryan T. Hemmer, in Reviews in Religion and Theology, Vol 24, Issue 4