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In Memoriam: André Clément (1930–2020)

It has only been recently that news has reached the Project of the death of André Clément on March 27, 2020. This memorial tribute is offered on the 50th day after his death.

A doctoral student of Charles De Koninck, André Clément helped to found the IPC-Paris along with his brother, Marcel Clément, in 1969, in answer to the upheavals in Catholic university education at the time. In this respect, Clément was very similarly situated to other students of De Koninck, such as Ronald McArthur, Marcus Berquist, among others, who founded Thomas Aquinas College.

In La pensée catholique en Amérique du nord: réseaux intellectuels et échanges culturels entre l'Europe, le Canada et les Etats-Unis (années 1920-1960), an intellectual history of North American Catholic thought between 1920 and 1960, Florian Michel observes in his chapter titled “The Citadelle of Quebec,” that:

«André Clément is known for the French milieu from which he came: brother of Marcel Clément, long-time editor of l’Homme nouveau, friend of Jean Madiran in the 1950’s, friend of the Charlier brothers, he is close to this integral, uncompromising Catholic milieu, traditionalist, who however rejects the Lefebvrist schism. He is the one who transmits the teaching of De Koninck to the Institute of Comparative Philosophy, founded in 1969 in the Visitation Convent in the 14th arrondissement of Paris.»

The influence of De Koninck upon his conception of philosophy is clear from his comments in an essay “Essai sur l’architectonisme du savoir,” published in 1973 in Itinéraires: “The habitus of method disposes the intellect to a humility before reality. When it is absent or inadequate, this constitutes the greatest obstacle to philosophical and theological discourse.” One of his works is La sagesse de Thomas d'Aquin (Paris: Nouvelles Editions Latines, 1983).

In memoriam tributes can be found at Famille Chrétienne, La Nef, the Institut du Christ Roi Souverain Prêtre, which describes his life and influence extensively, and L'Homme Nouveau (where the above quotation from Itinéraires is found).

Requiescat in pace, Prof. Clément.

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