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Theological and Social Ethics

This field of study in the Department of Theology enables students to develop rigorous and robust scholarly expertise in theological and social ethics, informed by attention to theory, context, and practice. This field of study integrates and amplifies existing departmental and university strengths in the contemporary and historical study of ethics. Faculty members bring particular acumen in Catholic traditions, feminist and liberationist ethics, bioethics, economic, and environmental ethics.

The TSE field of study also enables students to engage with Fordham’s eminent theology faculty across the various fields of study, and affords access to the educational and practice-based resources of our Bronx neighborhood, New York City, and the New York Theological Consortium.

Required Coursework

As part of the 12 courses required of all PhD students in theology, students must enroll in the annual designated doctoral seminar (identified from among annual departmental course listings) and in a one-time praxis-based tutorial (to amplify the student’s experience in considering issues of theological, social, and ethical significance by attending to context and praxis).

Language Exams

All students in TSE are required to pass language exams in French and German. Students may elect to substitute Spanish, depending upon the student’s scholarly research agenda.

Comprehensive Exams

The structure of the doctoral exams follows established procedures for the department.

The first major exam must be “Major Texts in Theological and Social Ethics.”

The second major exam addresses key themes, texts, methods, and/or figures in a particular area but must be sufficiently distinct from the dissertation topic. Students may choose among the options that include: philosophical sources and theological ethics; foundational theological ethics; Catholic social thought; topical exams (bioethics, economic ethics, gender and sexuality, liberationist and feminist, race and white privilege, environmental ethics); and theological ethics in comparative and historicalcontexts.

The minor exam is chosen from existing exams offered by the other fields of study and must be sufficiently distinct from the dissertation topic.

Core Faculty in Theological and Social Ethics

Affiliated Faculty