Politics of Love

Christliche Liebe als Herausforderung an die Politik
Termin: 21.03.2013 – 23.03.2013
Ort: Katholische Akademie in Berlin, Hannoversche Str. 5, 10115 Berlin

Ein Kolloquium der Research Group Anthropos (KU Leuven) & der Katholischen Akademie in Berlin in englischer Sprache


In modern life, love is typically relegated to the private realm of the individual’s personal relationships. Yet Christianity challenges such a marginalization of love and instead proclaims love’s universal – and thus also political – relevance. In light of this tension between modern sensibilities and Christian belief, this symposium enquires into the public and political import of love. If the human person is, as Christianity maintains, created and sustained through love, then what does this imply for our policy-making? How can or should love inform our public actions and endeavors today? Are our political structures and social institutions reliant on Christian love? Or does Christian love collide with the very concept of the ‘political’, thus inviting us to re-imagine the terms on which public agents interact? 

Thursday, 21 March 2013

until noon  arrival

1 pm         lunch

2-3 pm      Welcome
                 Prof. Dr. Lieven Boeve (KU Leuven) and Dr. Martin Knechtges (KA Berlin)

                 Introduction to the theme 
                 Prof. Dr. Yves De Maeseneer, Dr. Julia Meszaros and Jared Schumacher (Research Group Anthropos)

3-5 pm      COLLOQUIUM I  Love and the Political (chair: Prof. Dr. Lieven Boeve)
                 The Loneliness of Politics and the Duty of Change: Love as a ground for institutional radicalism
                 Francis Davis (Think Tank ResPublica, London)

                 Prof. Dr. Rolf Schieder (Research Program Religion, Politics and Economics, HU Berlin).

7-9.30 pm COLLOQUIUM II:  Love in Times of Terror (chair: Dr. Julia Meszaros)

                  From Utoya, with Love? Christianity and Politics in Anders Breivik’s Manifesto
                  Dr. Marc de Kesel (Research Group Anthropos)

                  Dr. Inigo Bocken (Radboud University Nijmegen). 

Friday, 22 March 2013

9-12 am     COLLOQUIUM III: The Challenge of Education (chair: Dr. Martin Knechtges)

                  Religion in der Schulkultur. Die christliche Nächstenliebe als Konzept?
                  Prof. Dr. Harald Schwillus (Halle/Saale)

                  Love for the World. Teaching Roman-Catholic Religion in a Context of Plurality
                  Dr. Pieter De Witte & Dr. Johan Ardui (PWO-KHLIM Belgium)

12.30 pm   Lunch at Restaurant Honigmond

3-6 pm       COLLOQUIUM IV:  Love and Justice (chair: Prof. Dr Yves De Maeseneer)

                   Perspectives from Catholic Social Teaching
                   Dr. Ellen Van Stichel (Research Group Anthropos)

                  The Challenges of Institutional Solidarity
                  Dr. Ulrike Kostka (President Caritas Berlin)

                  Experiences from Community Organizing
                  Prof. Dr. Leo Penta (Katholische Hochschule für Sozialwesen, Berlin/
                  Deutsches Institut für Community Organizing)

                 Glauben als Gefühl, an dem die Liebe ihren Anteil hat
                 Prof. Dr. Volker Gerhardt, Humboldt University Berlin

Reception and launch of the Anthropos blog on theological anthropology

Saturday, 23 March 2013

9-11 am   Breakfast meeting for future planning
12 pm      Departure

Attending the colloquium (or specific sessions) is free, but places are limited, so registering in advance is required. To register, please e-mail Dr. Julia Meszaros: Julia.Meszaros<at>

Martin Knechtges
Forschungsgruppe Anthropos der KU Leuven