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Philosophy and Religion Spring Forum

March 15, 2021 @ 12:00 pm 1:00 pm

Follow Your Conscience: The Catholic Church, War, Sex, and the Sixties

A virtual lecture by Peter Cajka, PhD, University of Notre Dame

Monday, March 15, 2021

Noon EST


What is your conscience? Is it a small, still voice? A cricket perched on your shoulder? An angel and devil who compete for your attention? This lecture explores how, from the Cold War to the cultural revolutions of 1968, American Catholics invoked conscience rights against authority in the church and in the state. 

As growing numbers of Catholics started to consider formerly stout institutions to be morally hollow, they increasingly turned to their own consciences as guides for action and belief. Today’s debates over political power, religious freedom, gay rights, and more, are all deeply infused by the language and concepts outlined by these pioneers of personal conscience.

Cajka is the author of Follow Your Conscience: The Catholic Church and the Spirit of the Sixties (University of Chicago Press, 2021). He is an assistant teaching professor in the Department of American Studies at the University of Notre Dame. Cajka earned a PhD in American religious history from Boston College in 2017.

This event is free and open to the Springfield College community and the public. It is hosted by members of the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences and part of the Philosophy and Religion Spring Forum Speaker Series.

For more information, contact Kate Dugan at kdugan@springfield.edu.  

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