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Preface This issue of logos does not cohere around a single theme, but alert readers will discover nonetheless that quite a few of the articles explore in a general way the relationship between Catholicism and the contemporary world. In exploring this relationship , it seems helpful to follow the suggestions offered in a recent lecture by philosopher Charles Taylor. The key question, according toTaylor, is not whether there is some new and"modern" Catholicism but whether we can reach new insight concerning the way to be truly Christian and Catholic while living in the particular cultural forms of modern civilization. In this issue a double-length article by Michele M. Schumacher explores in great detail the way in which the Church recognizes the dignity and vocation of women in the modern world. It should be clear to all of us that important changes in the respect accorded to women mark a significant feature of the contemporary world. Georges Bernanos in Diary of a Country Priest has one of his characters remark sagely that the ancient world looked brutally without blinking upon the cultural fact of social injustice in the world, and LOGOS 2:2 SPRING I 999 LOGOS that Christianity once and for all made such indifference to injustice impossible. Injustice did not disappear with the advent of Christianity—the character observes that slavery fractured into numerous pieces that embedded themselves in more subtle forms throughout the Christian world—but never again would it be possible to look without shame upon the face of injustice. It has taken many years for the injustices in the treatment of women to rise to the surface, but once seen for what they are, the Church rightly denounces them. Schumacher helps us see how the Church can denounce injustice in the treatment of women without endorsing also the errors of secularized modes of thought that are alert to issues of equality but less perspicacious concerning the sources of all human dignity and of all human vocations. Her article illuminates the theological content of John Paul II's encyclical, The Dignity and Vocation of Women. Readers will find Schumacher bringing forward the theological concepts upon which John Paul II constructs his account, and will have an opportunity to review with Schumacher a large number of criticisms directed at the document throughout the world while hearing a careful account of how the document stands up to its critics.The editors thought it would be helpful to our readers to publish this long essay in a single volume, however unusual it might be for us to run an article of this exceptional length. We commend it to your attention. Christina Scott, daughter of Christopher Dawson, offers a helpful overview of her father's work in cultural history, with an emphasis on the importance of Dawson's views as we prepare to celebrate the turn of the millennium. Scott helps us recognize the fundamental importance in Dawson's work of the religious foundations of world history, and brings to the surface why we should seek a strengthening of the religious foundations of culture as we cross the millennial divide. Scott also takes issue widi the view of Dawson's relation to modernity presented by Adam Schwartz in a previous issue of this journal. PREFACE A complementary examination of the relationship between Dawson's work as a historian and dominant contemporary intellectual trends is provided by Fernando Cervantes. Cervantes helps us read Dawson by showing how we must overcome reductionist concepts of knowledge, history, and culture if we are to recognize the true depth of the historical insights offered in Dawson's work. James V. Schall, S.J., in an article titled "On Education and Salvation," calls our attention to the medieval roots of the modern university, reminding us that we cannot fully articulate the basic questions pertaining to education unless we raise those questions in a context that includes our vital concern for issues of eternal life and salvation: "Education cannot be successful as a human enterprise if the questions addressed to the meaning of life are not carefully posed and formulated." Schall's account stands as a daunting challenge to contemporary views of education that have excluded from...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1533-791X
Print ISSN
1091-6687
Pages
pp. 5-8
Launched on MUSE
2012-04-04
Open Access
N
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