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2:00 PM | The Christian Imagination: Reflections on Flannery O'Connor, J.R.R. Tolkien, and C.S. Lewis

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University of Texas at Austin
Patton Hall (RLP) 1.104

2:00 - 5:30 pm

A conference featuring Raymond Hain (Providence College), Robert Koons (University of Texas at Austin), and Robert Royal (Faith & Reason Institute).


A Pilgrim’s Progress: The Christian Imagination of Flannery O’Connor - Raymond Hain

Tolkien’s Wizardry: How Metaphysics Molded Middle-Earth, and Middle-Earth Shaped the Post-Modern World - Robert Koons

Lecture title to be announced - Robert Royal

About the Speakers:

Raymond Hain is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Providence College and Associate Director of the Providence College Humanities Program. He received his BA in Philosophy from Christendom College and his MA and PhD in Philosophy from the University of Notre Dame, where he studied under Ralph McInerny and David Solomon. He works primarily in moral philosophy in the Thomistic tradition, as well as topics in applied ethics (especially bioethics and the ethics of architecture) and connections between philosophy and literature. As part of the Humanities Program, he directs the Providence College Humanities Forum and the Providence College Humanities Reading Seminars.

Robert Koons teaches metaphysics, philosophy of religion, philosophical logic, and ancient and medieval philosophy at the University of Texas. He has been at UT for 31 years, after having studied philosophy at Michigan State, Oxford and UCLA. Professor Koons has authored four books, Paradoxes of Belief and Strategic Rationality (Cambridge Univ., 1997),  Realism Regained (Oxford Univ., 2000), Metaphysics: The Fundamentals (Wiley-Blackwell, 2016), The Atlas of Reality (Wiley-Blackwell, 2018), the last two with Timothy Pickavance, and co-edited two anthologies, The Waning of Materialism (OUP, 2010, with George Bealer), and Neo-Aristotelian Perspectives on Contemporary Science (Routledge 2018, with William Simpson and Nicholas Teh). 

Robert Royal is the founder and president of the Faith & Reason Institute in Washington, D.C. and editor-in-chief of “The Catholic Thing” (, an online publication that appears daily and is translated into five foreign languages. He writes and speak on questions of ethics, culture, religion, and politics, has appeared frequently on EWTN as a special commentator on Church matters, various television and radio stations around the United States, and has lectured in fifteen foreign countries. Dr. Royal holds a B.A. and M.A. from Brown University and a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from the Catholic University of America. He has taught at Brown University, Rhode Island College, and The Catholic University of America. He received fellowships to study in Italy from the Renaissance Society of American (1977) and as a Fulbright scholar (1978). His most recent book is A Deeper Vision: The Catholic Intellectual Tradition in the 20th Century (Ignatius 2015).