Our goal is to provide an online resource for the work of Charles De Koninck. Ultimately, the purpose of our project is to ensure that he is more widely read and to encourage others to take up not just the letter but also the spirit of his studies, spurring discussion in pursuit of truth.
The Charles De Koninck Project is preparing to seek 501(c)(3) incorporation.
How Did The Project Start?
“I fell back in my chair and thanked God that I had studied under this man. But he is now all but unknown, his writings are difficult to find, and few had been translated. I conceived the project of the collected works as an instance of pietas and gratitude.” — Ralph McInerny, 2009
A graduate student of De Koninck's at Laval University before becoming a renowned author and philosopher at the University of Notre Dame, Ralph McInerny edited and published The Writings of Charles De Koninck, Volume 1 and The Writings of Charles De Koninck, Volume 2 before his death in 2010. McInerny fittingly bequeathed the completion of the Charles De Koninck Project to David Quackenbush of Thomas Aquinas College.
Quackenbush came up with the idea of collecting De Koninck's writings over two decades ago as a graduate student of McInerny's at Notre Dame. It was then that Quackenbush first put together the physical archive of De Koninck's writings now housed at The Jacques Maritain Center. The fruit of years of David Quackenbush's labor and study, the Charles De Koninck Project exists to complete Ralph Mcinerny's unfinished final project.
The main work of the the Project has since been handed on by Quackenbush to John G. Brungardt, graduate of Thomas Aquinas College and The Catholic University of America, whose doctoral work focused on the philosophy of nature of Charles De Koninck. The current Project webpage and its resources were designed and begun during Brungardt’s postdoctoral research and a visit to The Jacques Maritain Center. Brungardt is currently assistant professor of philosophy at the School of Catholic Studies, Newman University.
Thomas De Koninck’s Letter of Support
The Charles De Koninck Project's online presence, the availability of the works for free, and the larger proposed community of discussion the center hopes to encourage are splendid initiatives, sure to do untold good to so many. The practical, organizational side of the project is also most promising.
So far as my father’s teaching and works are concerned, no one is more qualified than David Quackenbush is for such a task. He was the one who photocopied, long ago now, at Ralph McInerny’s request to me, with my total assent, the entire content of the Archives Charles De Koninck here at Laval University in Quebec, for the benefit of the University of Notre Dame and of Thomas Aquinas College. (Ralph wrote that it was David's initiative and that he had, in fact, conceived the idea.) David later made a great deal of it accessible on the internet, again with my entire approval.
My father had told me that Ralph had been his best pupil and Ralph showed it in many ways, in his own work and otherwise, but not least in his last years, when he took on the task of publishing, at the Notre Dame Press, The Writings of Charles De Koninck, much of which he translated himself from the original French into English. He managed to see two volumes of it published before he died, with the third almost done.
There was no doubt between Ralph and myself that David would be the preeminent choice for carrying on that project, translations and editing included. It was Ralph’s strong wish that David continue his effort, and it is wholeheartedly mine now. I am utterly convinced that the new form he is grafting onto it is ideal for the present day and future generations.
You have, then, my total support and I shall be glad to give you any possible assistance you might see fit to ask of me for that great project.
With my very kindest regards,
—Thomas De Koninck, 2012
John G. Brungardt, General Editor
Marina S. Brungardt, Assistant Editor
David J. Quackenbush
Matthew J. Peterson