Sessions of Interest at the 51st International Congress on Medieval Studies, May 12–15, 2016

Kalamazoo is upon us!

The 51st International Congress on Medieval Studies runs from May 12–15, 2016, and contains a multitude of papers that may be of interest to scholars engaged in the study of Thomas Aquinas, his predecessors, his contemporaries and the legacy of his thought.

Of special note is Denys Turner speaking on translating medieval philosophy in Session 439 on Saturday at 3:30, and the hands-on introduction to the Arabic Astrolabe on Friday at 9:30 in Valley III, Stinson Lounge, with a free astrolabe to the first fifty participants. The astrolabe presentation will likely be a standing-room only affair, so make sure to get there VERY early if you would like your own astrolabe.

The sessions of the Thomas Aquinas Society on Friday and the Philosophy of Thomas Aquinas on Saturday are down in Valley I this year, down the wooded path and away from the book-displays and cafeteria, so be prepared to do more walking than our usual Valley II location required.

Sadly, there seems to be no mead-tasting event on Saturday afternoon; perhaps next year.

Here is a selection of sessions that may be of particular interest to readers of this site:

Thursday- 10:00

Session 7- Valley I, Ackley 106

The Medieval Tradition of Natural Law I

Organizer: Harvey Brown, Western Univ.

Presider: Harvey Brown

  •  Tierney, Ockham, and the Ideological Context of the Discourse on Natural Rights

Takashi Shogimen, Univ. of Otago

  •  Making Sense of “Indifference”: A Puzzle in Tierney’s Account of Permissive Natural Law

Paul J. Cornish, Grand Valley State Univ.

  •  Permission and Liberty: The Ambiguity

Richard Friedman, Independent Scholar

  •  Francisco Suarez and Permissive Natural Law

Toy-Fung Tung, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, CUNY


Session 8- Valley I, Shilling Lounge

From Physics to Metaphysics: Change and Causation in Medieval Philosophy

Sponsor: Center for Medieval Philosophy, Georgetown Univ.

Organizer: Robert Joseph Matava, Christendom College, Graduate School of


Presider: Therese Scarpelli Cory, Univ. of Notre Dame

  •  William Ockham on Divine Power and Possibility

Joshua Blander, King’s College

  •  Peter of Palude on Secondary Causes and Divine Concurrence

Zita Tóth, Fordham Univ.

  •  Epistemic Conditions on Causal Agency

Sydney Penner, Asbury Univ.

Thursday- 1:30

Session 62- Fetzer 2020

Dante II: Philosophical Questions

Sponsor: Dante Society of America

Organizer: Alison Cornish, Univ. of Michigan–Ann Arbor

Presider: Albert Russel, Univ. of California–Berkeley 

  •  “Il mal seme d’Adamo”: Soul, Body, and Original Sin in Dante

Dana E. Stewart, Binghamton Univ.

  •  Curiosity and the Excess of Prudence

Gabriel Pihas, St. Mary’s College of California

  •  The Piccarda Donati Thought Experiment: Dante’s Self-Forming Absolute Will

Humberto Ballestero, Columbia Univ.

  •  Heresy and Faith as Matters of Praxis rather than Belief in the Divine Comedy

Jason Aleksander, St. Xavier Univ.


Session 92- Sangren 1730

Teaching Arabic Sources in Translation (A Roundtable)

Sponsor: TEAMS (The Consortium for the Teaching of the Middle Ages)

Organizer: Sally Hany Abed, Univ. of Utah; Doaa Omran, Univ. of New Mexico;

Thomas A. Goodmann, Univ. of Miami

Presider: Sahar Ishtiaque Ullah, Columbia Univ.

  •  Teaching the Quran in the Ancient World Literature Class

Doaa Omran

  •  Teaching Averroes’s “Decisive Treatise” in a Freshman Sequence

Coeli Fitzpatrick, Grand Valley State Univ.

  •  Teaching Tales of the Marvelousin the Writing Classroom: A Rhetorical Approach

Maha Baddar, Pima Community College

  •  Teaching the Arabian Nights : A Living Tradition

Sally Hany Abed

  •  Muslim Travelers and Muslim Migrants: Ibn Battuta’s World Today

Margaret Aziza Pappano, Queen’s Univ. Kingston

  •  Teaching Arabic/Islamic Philosophy: Using Arabic-English and Latin-English Translations to Put Another Nail in the Coffin of “Orientalism”

Richard C. Taylor, Marquette Univ.


Session 94- Sangren 1750

The Scientific Works of Robert Grosseteste

Sponsor: Ordered Universe Research Project

Organizer: Giles E. M. Gasper, Durham Univ.

Presider: Nicholas Everett, Univ. of Toronto

  •  “But first: are you experienced?”: Robert Grosseteste’s Experiential Epistemology

Sigbjørn Olsen Sønnesyn, Durham Univ.

  • Robert Grosseteste: Heir to the Severn Valley Mathematical School

Kathy Bader, Durham Univ.

  • Science and Arts: Robert Grosseteste on the Liberal Arts

Giles E. M. Gasper

Thursday- 3:30

Session 102- Valley I, Ackley 105

Wisdom Literature

Sponsor: Society for the Study of the Bible in the Middle Ages (SSBMA)

Organizer: Aaron Canty, St. Xavier Univ.

Presider: James M. Matenaer, Franciscan Univ. of Steubenville 

  •  Vanity in Bonaventure’s Commentary on Ecclesiastes

Aaron Canty

  • Scientia secundum Pietatem : Albert the Great on the Book of Job and the Nature of Theology

Franklin T. Harkins, Boston College

  •  Robert Holcot, O.P., and Fourteenth-Century Skepticism: Evidence from His Commentaries on Wisdom and Ben Sira

Kimberly Georgedes, Franciscan Univ. of Steubenville


Session 104- Valley I, Shilling Lounge

Matthew A. Tapie, Aquinas on Israel and the Church(A Panel Discussion)

Sponsor: Academy of Jewish-Christian Studies

Organizer: Lawrence E. Frizzell, Seton Hall Univ.

Presider: Lawrence E. Frizzell

  • Reflection: Aquinas on Israel and the Church

Matthew Levering, Univ. of St. Mary of the Lake

  •  Medieval Franciscan Perspectives on Israel and the Church

Steven J. McMichael, OFM Conv., Univ. of St. Thomas, Minnesota

  • Response: Matthew A. Tapie, St. Leo Univ.


Session 118- Schneider 1160

Franciscan Theology: The Implications of a Good Creation

Organizer: Richard A. Nicholas, Univ. of St. Francis, Joliet

Presider: Andrew Salzmann, Benedictine College

  •  The Similitude of All Things: Halensian Incarnational Anthropology and Soteriology

Ty Monroe, Boston College

  •  The Role of the Good Creation and New Covenant in the Eucharistic Thought of Saint Francis

Richard A. Nicholas


Session 122- Schneider 1245

Nicholas of Cusa’s Theology of the Word

Sponsor: American Cusanus Society

Organizer: Peter J. Casarella, Univ. of Notre Dame

Presider: Donald F. Duclow, Gwynedd-Mercy Univ.

  •  Nature and Art in the Cusan Conception of the Word

José González Ríos, Univ. de Buenos Aires

  • Logos-Verbum : The Word in Nicholas of Cusa and Gadamer

Michael Edward Moore, Univ. of Iowa

  •  A Dialogical Theology of the Word: Nicholas of Cusa’s Idiota de sapientia

Peter J. Casarella

Thursday- 7:30

Session 151- Valley I, Shilling Lounge

Classical Philosophy in the Lands of Islam and Its Influence (A Workshop)

Sponsor: Aquinas and ‘the Arabs’ International Working Group

Organizer: Richard C. Taylor, Marquette Univ./DeWulf Mansion Centre, KU Leuven

Presider: Richard C. Taylor

  • The Comparison of al-Kindi’s and al-Farabi’s Metaphysics: Similarities and Differences

Cevher Sulul, Harran Univ.

  • Are We Certain We Are Virtuous? Al-Farabi on First Principles and Demonstration within Ethics

Nicholas Oschman, Marquette Univ.

  • God as the Necessary Being in Avicenna and Aquinas

Jacob Andrews, Loyola Univ. Chicago

Friday- 10:00

Session 178- Valley I, Ackley 106

Thomas Aquinas I

Sponsor: Thomas Aquinas Society

Organizer: John F. Boyle, Univ. of St. Thomas, Minnesota

Presider: Paul Gondreau, Providence College

  •  Aquinas’s Comic Cosmos: Goodness, Happiness, and Luck

Maria Devlin, Harvard Univ.

  •  How Theology Judges the Principles of Other Sciences

Gregory F. LaNave, Dominican House of Studies

  • “And We Will Make Our Home with Him”: Saint Thomas Aquinas on the Invisible Missions and the Action of the Trinity in the Economy

Katie Froula, Ave Maria Univ.


Session 202- Schneider 1275

De lingua Latina vivente in studiis mediaevalibus huius temporis (A Roundtable)

Sponsor: Paideia Institute for Humanistic Study; Pontifical Academy Latinitas

Organizer: Jason Pedicone, Paideia Institute for Humanistic Study

Presider: Daniel B. Gallagher, Paideia Institute for Humanistic Study

  • A roundtable discussion with Nancy Llewellyn, Wyoming Catholic College; Diane Warne Anderson, Univ. of Massachusetts–Boston; and Alexander Andrée, Univ. of Toronto.


Session 222- Bernhard 212

Hylomorphism and Mereology

Sponsor: Society for Medieval Logic and Metaphysics

Organizer: Alexander W. Hall, Clayton State Univ.

Presider: Alexander W. Hall

  •   Boethius of Dacia on the Differentiae and the Unity of Definitions

Rodrigo Guerizoli, Univ. Federal do Rio de Janeiro

  •  What Has Aquinas Got against Platonic Forms?

Turner C. Nevitt, Univ. of San Diego

  •  Mereological Hylomorphism and the Development of the Buridanian Account of Formal Consequence

Jacob Archambault, Fordham Univ.

Friday- 1:30

Session 231- Valley I, Shilling Lounge

Thomas Aquinas II

Sponsor: Thomas Aquinas Society

Organizer: John F. Boyle, Univ. of St. Thomas, Minnesota

Presider: Paul Jerome Keller, OP, Athenaeum of Ohio 

  • Saint Thomas on the Subtlety and Spirituality of the Glorified Body

Christopher M. Brown, Univ. of Tennessee–Martin

  • Verbumas a Proper Name of the Son in Saint Thomas Aquinas

David Liberto, Notre Dame Seminary

  •  The Faith of Doctoresin the Thirteeenth Century: Hugh of Saint-Cher, Thomas Aquinas, and the Vocation of the Lay Theologian

Jacob W. Wood, Franciscan Univ. of Steubenville


Session 234- Fetzer 1040

The Teachings of Bernard of Clairvaux

Sponsor: Center for Cistercian and Monastic Studies, Western Michigan Univ.

Organizer: Susan M. B. Steuer, Western Michigan Univ.

Presider: Elias Dietz, OCSO, Abbey of Gethsemani 

  •  Bernard of Clairvaux and the Three Stages of Charity

Margaret Blume, Univ. of Notre Dame

  •  The Beginning of All Sin Is Curiosity: The Pivotal Role of Curiositas in Bernard of Clairvaux’s Overarching Vision of the Spiritual Life

James Upton DeFrancis, Jr., Christendom College

  •  “Diversa sed Non Adversa”: Saint Bernard’s Christological Development of Image and Likeness from On Grace and Free Choiceto the Sermons on the Song of Songs

Jonathan M. Kaltenbach, Univ. of Notre Dame

  •  Bernard of Clairvaux: Scientia Inflans and Its History

Marvin Döbler, Ev.-luth. Landeskirche Hannovers

Friday- 3:30

Session 284- Valley I, Ackley 106

The Abbey of Saint-Victor: Theology in Summae , Sequences, and Sermons

Organizer: Grover A. Zinn, Jr., Oberlin College

Presider: Grover A. Zinn, Jr.

  •  The Mutation of Hugh of Saint-Victor’s On the Sacramentsand the Nascence of Peter Lombard’s Sentences

Robert J. Porwoll, Univ. of Chicago

  •  Human Love an Echo of the Divine: Adam of Saint-Victor on Christian Love

Juliet Mousseau, RSCJ, Aquinas Institute of Theology

  •  A Most Useful Spirit: “Utilitas” as a Pneumatological Attribute in the Theology of Achard of Saint-Victor

Nicole Reibe, Boston College


Session 285- Valley I- Shilling Lounge

Thomas Aquinas III

Sponsor: Thomas Aquinas Society

Organizer: John F. Boyle, Univ. of St. Thomas, Minnesota

Presider: Robert J. Barry, Providence College

  •  Saint Thomas’s Understanding of the Role of Christ in the Moral Life

Jeffrey Froula, Ave Maria Univ.

  •  Three Kinds of Opposition of Good and Evil in De malo

Jordan M. Blank, Catholic Univ. of America

  •  Eye Has Not Seen: Aquinas’s Use of 1 Corinthians 2:9 in Relation to Nature and Grace

Daniel M. Garland, Jr., Christendom College


Session 312- Schneider 1330

“Antitheta quae sententiae pulchritudinem faciunt” (Isidore): Contrasts in Medieval Texts and Images

Sponsor: Dept. of Medieval Studies, Central European Univ.

Organizer: Gerhard Jaritz, Central European Univ.

Presider: Gerhard Jaritz

  •  “Imagines in Ecclesiis”: Bonaventure’s Defense of Sculpture in Thirteenth- Century France

Brandon L. Cook, Univ. of Notre Dame

  •  “Sub Una, Sub Utraque”: Contrasting Visions of Religious Communities in Post-Hussite Bohemia

Katerina Hornickova, Univ. Wien

  •  Negotiating Female Chastity: Self-Fashioning In Late Medieval German Cosmographies

Irina Savinetskaya, Independent Scholar

  •  Contrasting Images from the Edges of the World: Eastern European Lands in the Fifteenth to the First Half of the Sixteenth

Alena Kliuchnik, Central European Univ.


Session 320- Bernhard 204

The Medieval Franciscans and the Virgin Mary

Sponsor: Franciscan Institute, St. Bonaventure Univ.

Organizer: Steven J. McMichael, OFM Conv., Univ. of St. Thomas, Minnesota

Presider: Steven J. McMichael, OFM Conv.

  •  Saint Francis of Assisi: The Model for Bonaventure’s Meditation on Spiritual Motherhood

Yongho Francis Lee, Univ. of Notre Dame

  • Reflecting on Mary: Pietro Lorenzetti’s Madonna dei Tramonti (Madonna of the Sunsets) in the Lower Church, San Francesco (Assisi)

Darrelyn Gunzburg, Univ. of Wales Trinity St. David

  •  Francis Mayron and the Immaculate Conception: Sources, Context, and Doctrine

Christiaan W. Kappes, SS. Cyril and Methodius Byzantine Catholic Seminary

Friday- 9:30 p.m.

Valley III , Stinson Lounge

A Hands-On Introduction to Islamic Astrolabes(A Workshop) 

Organizer: Kristine Larsen, Central Connecticut State Univ.

Presider: Kristine Larsen

A hands-on workshop on the basic parts and usage of an Islamic astrolabe, including how to calculate the times of prayer and estimate the direction of Mecca from a given location. Each of the first fifty attendees will receive a free cardboard astrolabe and instruction sheet.

Saturday- 10:00

Session 339- Valley I, Shilling Lounge

Philosophy of Saint Thomas Aquinas I: Gifts, Councils, and Virtues

Sponsor: Center for Thomistic Studies, Univ. of St. Thomas, Houston

Organizer: Steven J. Jensen, Univ. of St. Thomas, Houston

Presider: Steven J. Jensen

  •  The Gift of Counsel: A Key to Moral Theology

Eric M. Johnston, Seton Hall Univ.

  •  How Faith Perfects Prudence: The Importance of the Gift of Counsel and Why Aquinas Devoted a Very Long Section of the Summa of Theology to the Judicial Precepts of the Old Law

Randall B. Smith, Univ. of St. Thomas, Houston

  •  To Become Poor: Saint Thomas on the Virtue of Poverty

Anne Frances Ai Le, OP, St. Mark’s and Corpus Christi Colleges


Session 357- Schneider 1160

Medieval Franciscan Women as Theologians

Sponsor: Women in the Franciscan Intellectual Tradition (WIFIT)

Organizer: Diane Tomkinson, OSF, Neumann Univ.

Presider: Diane Tomkinson, OSF

  •  Women with Ordinary Faith: Writing the History of Secular Franciscans from Sparcely Documented Lives

Darleen Pryds, Franciscan School of Theology

  •  “Pregnant with God”: Creation and the Natural World in Angela of Foligno’s Theology

Joy A. Schroeder, Trinity Lutheran Seminary/Capital Univ.

  •  Caritas Pirckheimer: Freedom of Conscience

Pacelli Millane, OSC, Women in the Franciscan Intellectual Tradition


Session 366- Schneider 1325

Theology and Literature in Medieval Asia Minor, Central and South Eastern Europe

Sponsor: Romanian Institute of Orthodox Theology and Spirituality of New York

Organizer: Theodor Damian, Metropolitan College of New York

Presider: Daniela Anghel, Romanian Institute of Orthodox Theology and


  • De Hominis Dignitatein Gregory of Nazianzus’s Poetry

Theodor Damian

  •  The History and Transmission of “On Watchfulness and Holiness” by Hesychius of Sinai: A Reappraisal

Daniel VanderKolk, St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary

  •  “He who pays attention to them is illumined”: Peter of Damaskos, Repetition, and Lectio Divina

Nathan John Haydon, Univ. of Arkansas–Fayetteville

  • Nilus of Ancyra on the Song of Songs: A Link in the Catena

Clair W. McPherson, General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church

Saturday- 1:30

Session 392- Valley I, Shilling Lounge

Philosophy of Saint Thomas Aquinas II: Man in the Universe

Sponsor: Center for Thomistic Studies, Univ. of St. Thomas, Houston

Organizer: Steven J. Jensen, Univ. of St. Thomas, Houston

Presider: R. Edward Houser, Univ. of St. Thomas, Houston

  •  The Three Universes of Saint Thomas Aquinas

John G. Brungardt, Catholic Univ. of America

  •  Being and Time in Thomistic Metaphysics: On an Exchange between Lawrence Dewan and Joseph Owens

Kevin White, Catholic Univ. of America

  •  Aquinas and the Identity of Intellect and Intelligibles

Therese Scarpelli Cory, Univ. of Notre Dame


Session 418- Schneider 1320

Hildegard von Bingen: Bridges to Infinity

Sponsor: International Society of Hildegard von Bingen Studies

Organizer: Pozzi Escot, New England Conservatory

Presider: Conrad Herold, Hofstra Univ.

  • Hildegard von Bingen’s Concept of Truth compared to Saint Augustine’s Analysis of the Nature of Truth

Bern Manoushagian, Pers Press

  • What Is the Soul of a Man

Alice Gebura, Independent Scholar

  • Hildegard’s Paintings Today

Francesca Ulivi, Independent Scholar

  • Body as Bridge/Body as Barrier: Subjectivity and Metaphor in Hildegard’s Scivias

Abigail Owen, Univ. of Toronto

  • Sacred Geometry: The Visions of Hildegard von Bingen, from Liber divinorum operum, compared with Native American Indian Spirituality

Gwendolyn Morgan, Le Moyne College


Session 421- Schneider 1335

Issues in Metaphysics, Logic, and Epistemology in Medieval Philosophy

Sponsor: Society for Medieval and Renaissance Philosophy

Organizer: Jason Aleksander, St. Xavier Univ.

Presider: Jason Aleksander

  •  Aquinas on Secondary Causation

Julie Swanstrom, Armstrong State Univ.

  •  Analogy Problems in Primitive Thomism: The Solutions of Hervaeus Natalis and Thomas Sutton

Domenic D’Ettore, Marian Univ.

  •  The Third Mode of Equivocation in Ockham’s Mental Language

Milo Crimi, Univ. of California–Los Angeles

Saturday- 3:30

Session 439- Valley III, Stinson 303

Medieval Translation Theory and Practice II (A Practicum)

Organizer: Jeanette Beer, Univ. of Oxford

Presider: Jeanette Beer

  •  Translating the Icelandic Sagas

Arni Blandon Einarsson, Fjölbrautaskóli Su›urlands

  •  Translating the Roman de Troie

Maud Burnett McInerney, Haverford College

  •  Translating Medieval Philosophy

Denys Turner, Yale Univ.


Session 443- Valley I, Hadley 102

Augustine on the Body: Metaphysical, Biblical, and Empirical Approaches

Organizer: Marianne Djuth, Canisius College

Presider: Marianne Djuth

  •  “An Obedient Servant to Some People . . . beyond the Normal Limitations of Nature” (De civ. dei14.24): Augustine and the Extreme Body

Nancy Weatherwax, Western Michigan Univ.

  •  Two Images of God: Augustine on Male/Female Equality in Human Substance

Robert N. Parks, Univ. of Dayton

  •  Augustine’s S.O.S.

Thomas Losoncy, Villanova Univ.

  •  Augustine’s Early Understanding of the Body

Thomas Clemmons, Univ. of Notre Dame


Session 445- Valley I, Shilling Lounge

Philosophy of Saint Thomas Aquinas III: Love and the Good

Sponsor: Center for Thomistic Studies, Univ. of St. Thomas, Houston

Organizer: Steven J. Jensen, Univ. of St. Thomas, Houston

Presider: Mary Catherine Sommers, Univ. of St. Thomas, Houston 

  •  The Objective Relativity of Goodness: A Rapprochement between Peter Geach and Thomas Aquinas

Catherine Peters, Univ. of St. Thomas, Houston

  •  Avital Wohlman and the Existence of Love of Friendship at the Sub-rational Level

Jordan Olver, St. Thomas More College

  •  Does Taste Matter for Thomists?

Margaret I. Hughes, College of Mount St. Vincent


Session 474- Schneider 1335

Perspectives on Reason, Revelation, Beatific Vision, and Apophatic Experience in Medieval Philosophy

Sponsor: Society for Medieval and Renaissance Philosophy

Organizer: Jason Aleksander, St. Xavier Univ.

Presider: Donald F. Duclow, Gwynedd-Mercy Univ. 

  • Reason and Revelation in Three Traditions in the Middle Ages: “Sense” versus “Value”

Robert J. Dobie, La Salle Univ.

  • Aquinas on the Relationship between the Vision and Delight in Perfect Happiness

Joseph Stenberg, Univ. of Colorado–Boulder, Karrer Travel Award Winner

  • Feminine Apophasis of “Knowing” in Marguerite Porete’s The Mirror of Simple Souls

Anne Spear, Univ. of Mississippi

Sunday- 8:30

Session 493- Valley II, LeFevre Lounge

The Medieval Reception of Augustine of Hippo I

Organizer: Thomas Clemmons, Univ. of Notre Dame

Presider: Thomas Clemmons 

  •  The Quality of Mercy: Gregory the Great’s Development of Augustine on Mercy’s Likeness to God

Jordan Wales, Hillsdale College

  •  A Tale of Two Readers: Multiple Augustines in a Single Carolingian Manuscript

J. David Schlosser, Lee Univ.

  •  The Reception of Augustine of Hippo on Holy Violence during the Investiture Contest by Anselm II of Lucca and Bonizo of Sutri

John A. Dempsey, Westfield State Univ.


Session 519- Bernhard 211

Science, Nature, and Scholarship in the Early Middle Ages

Sponsor: Dept. of Theology and Religion, Durham Univ.

Organizer: Helen Foxhall Forbes, Durham Univ.

Presider: Guy Halsall, Univ. of York

  •  Thunderbolts and Lightning Really Aren’t That Frightening: Reporting the Weather in Carolingian Annals

Julie A. Hofmann, Shenandoah Univ.

  •  Thinking about Theology and Science in the Insular World

Helen Foxhall Forbes

  •  Fractions of Sound: The Philosophical and Practical Function of Duodecimal Fractions, as Witnessed by a Mathematical Fragment from Twelfth-Century Glendalough, County Wicklow, Ireland

Mary Kelly, Univ. College Dublin

Sunday- 10:30

Session 521- Valley II, LeFevre Lounge

The Medieval Reception of Augustine of Hippo II

Organizer: Thomas Clemmons, Univ. of Notre Dame

Presider: Michael S. Hahn, Univ. of Notre Dame

  •  Augustine and Anselm on Necessity and Ontological Arguments

Michael Vendsel, Tarrant County College

  •  Illuminating Abstraction: Bonaventure’s Reception of Augustinian Epistemology

Benjamin P. Winter, St. Louis Univ.

  • Augustinian Influence in Meister Eckhart’s German Sermons: The Word and the Image in the Soul

Breanna Nickel, Univ. of Notre Dame