What, for the University, is Solidarity? Catholic Higher Education and the Unfinished Reception of Gaudium et Spes

Susan Bigelow Reynolds, Emory University

Paper presented at the “Vatican II and Catholic Higher Education: Leading Forward” conference held at Sacred Heart University October 13-15, 2022.



Forty years ago, Jesuit philosopher and theologian Ignacio Ellacuría accepted an honorary doctorate from Santa Clara University and delivered a commencement address with which some of us here today are likely familiar. In the concise and penetrating speech, Ellacuría proposed a vision of the university as both a center of intellectual inquiry and cultural production, and as a “social force”—a place concerned with the transformation of social reality.