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No. 45 • July - December 2007 • Page 322
 •  Initiatives

Rome (Italy) -- Inauguaration of school year at the Celimontano University Residence

On December 16, Celimontano Residence officially inaugurated the school year with an address by Angela Ales Bello, professor at the Pontifical Lateran University. The conference was entitled “Interpersonal Relations: From Empathy to a Dual Anthropology.” This was a continuation of a series begun the previous year at the residence on the differences and affinities between masculine and feminine psychologies.

At the beginning of her talk, Professor Ales Bello emphasized that the human being is a social being who needs to relate to others, as a part of oneself. Therefore, each person searches for affinities in others, which gives rise to the inner experience known as empathy.

She then went on to consider the concept of identity in the man-woman relationship, the specific contribution that femininity makes, and the historical conditions that turned the latter into a cause of discrimination.

In the effort to unmask prejudices and to find common ground, a notable role was played in the 20th century by phenomenology, a philosophical school that, not by chance, counted, especially in Germany, with a high proportion of women in its ranks. An outstanding example was Edith Stein, whose theological reflections on Mary were combined with a philosophical analysis of the contribution femininity makes to humanity.

At the end of the conference, the public, made up of students who live at the residence, their families and friends, raised a number of questions that gave Professor Ales Bello the opportunity to go more deeply into some of the topics discussed.

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