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Braniff Undergraduate Conference in the Liberal Arts

2nd Annual Braniff Undergraduate Conference in the Liberal Arts | The Good Life | Oct. 11-12, 2019

Keynote Panel:

Joshua ParensJoshua Parens, Ph.D.

Dr. Parens is the Braniff Graduate Dean and a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Dallas. He received his doctorate from the University of Chicago. His research interests include Islamic and Jewish medieval philosophy, early modern philosophy, metaphysics, Spinoza, and political philosophy.



Richard DoughertyRichard Dougherty, Ph.D.

Dr. Dougherty is the Graduate Director of the Politics Program and an Associate Professor of Politics at the University of Dallas. He received his doctorate from the University of Dallas. His research interests include medieval political philosophy, Constitutionalism and American politics, the Presidency, and the American founding.



Gilbert GarzaGilbert Garza, Ph.D.

Dr. Garza is the Graduate Director of the Psychology Program and an Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Dallas. He received his doctorate from Duquesne University. His dissertation was entitled, Bodily Disappearance and Dys-appearance: An Empirical Phenomenological Investigation of Bodily Taking up a Task. This work sought to examine how the psychological literature of the body in action reveals a dualistic bias that prevents a faithful description of human embodied experience.

Kathryn DavisKathryn Davis, Ph.D.

Dr. Davis is an Assistant Professor of English at the University of Dallas. She received her doctorate from the University of Dallas. Her research interests include Jane Austen, Dante, and Shakespeare.




Fr. Thomas EspositoFr. Thomas Esposito, O. Cist.

Fr. Thomas is an Assistant Professor of Theology at the University of Dallas. He completed his doctorate in Biblical Theology at the Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome. His research interests include both the Old and New Testaments, Biblical Greek, and World Religions.




About the Conference

The Braniff Graduate Student Association of the University of Dallas is pleased to announce the second annual Braniff Undergraduate Conference in the Liberal Arts. This conference aims to recover and renew the Western heritage of liberal arts and the Christian intellectual tradition in pursuit of eudaimonia, the good life. This year, the conference and the keynote panel ask, "What role does the distinctiveness of the disciplines play in the quest for truth?" If human flourishing requires the pursuit of truth, to which discipline should man turn? Or, is it through the dialogue between multiple disciplines that truth is best approached? What does the answer to this tension--one particular discipline versus the dialogue between many--indicate about the nature of the human person?

The conference will take place at the University of Dallas, located in Irving, TX. 

Call for Papers

We invite juniors, seniors, and recent college graduates working in the liberal arts to submit abstracts of no more than 500 words. Preference will be given to papers and presentations conversant with the great texts of the Western tradition. We welcome presentations in liberal arts disciplines including—but not limited to—philosophy, literature, politics, theology, classics, fine art, history, education, psychology, and economics, and drawing from the classical, medieval, modern, or contemporary period.

Submit abstracts to Please include a separate cover letter with your name, presentation title, email address, and institutional affiliation. If you would like to present a work of fine art, please contact the conference organizers for specific guidelines.

Abstracts are due no later than Thursday, August 1, 2019. Presenters will be notified of their acceptance by Friday, August 16, and will be asked to submit their full papers or presentations, suitable for a 15 minute presentation (no more than 2500 words), by Monday, September 30, 2019.

Conference Program

Previous Conferences

  • 1st Annual BUCLA, University of Dallas | Keynote Speaker: Susan Hanssen, Ph.D.