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Robert Schuman: Neo-Scholastic Humanism and the Reunification of Europe


Alan Fimister

On 9 th May 1950 Robert Schuman (1886-1963) made the historic declaration that would form the foundation of the European Community. What is seldom appreciated is the remarkable degree to which Schuman’s actions were the conscious implementation of the Neo-Thomistic project of Pope Leo XIII (1878-1903). Leo sought to employ the intellectual resources of St Thomas Aquinas to achieve «the restoration, both in rulers and peoples, of the principles of the Christian life in civil and domestic society». The resolution of the Church’s difficulties with the French Republic and republicanism generally was a central goal of Leo’s programme. In the half-century that followed a series of philosophers sought to envisage the concrete conditions under which Leo’s vision could be realised. Foremost among them was Jacques Maritain (1882-1973).
Robert Schuman was a close student of Aquinas and committed to the reconciliation of the Church and the Republic. As French Foreign Minister he sought to act upon Maritain’s belief that a European federation conceived under the banner of liberty would ultimately lead to the establishment of a new Christendom.


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Bibliography 259


259 Bibliography I. Writings of Robert Schuman Published Journal du 60e Congrès Général des Catholiques d’Allemagne. Metz, 19th August, 1913. [ADM 19J660] Schuman, Robert. “L’irresponsabilité des hommes politiques” in Revue Catho- lique des institutions et du droit, Lyon, 1935, pp. 6-19. Schuman, Robert. “La leçon des scandales et la réforme judicaire” in Revue Catholique des institutions et du droit. Lyon, 1935, pp. 522-539. Rieben, Henri et al. Un changement d’espérence. Lausanne: Centre de recher- ches européennes, 2000. Schuman, Robert. “La France et L’Allemagne peuvent-elles coexister?” in Réalités, No. 96, January 1954. [ADM 34J39] Schuman, Robert. French Policy towards Germany since the War. London: Oxford University Press, 1954. (Kathleen Parnell trans.) Schuman, Robert. Pour L’Europe. Paris: Les Éditions Nagel, 1963. Unpublished Speeches and Papers Schuman, Robert. Liberté de l’Église. Rouen, July 1938. [MRS] Schuman, Robert. L’État contemporain dans la vie économique et sociale. Brussels, 8th November 1947. [MRS] Schuman, Robert. La situation en France. Poitiers, 18th April 1948. [MRS] Schuman, Robert. L’Avenir de la France repose sur sa culture. Montreal, 2nd October 1949. [ADM 34J23] Schuman, Robert. Discours prononcé par M. le Président Schuman devant l’Assemblée Générale des Nations unies. Flushing Meadows, 23rd September 1949. [ADM 34J21] Schuman, Robert. Comment le Français d’aujourd’hui peut-il concevoir l’Europe? Paris, Friday 2nd March 1951. [MRS] Schuman, Robert. La Politique européenne, œuvre de paix. Oslo, 15th April 1953. [ADM 34J36] Schuman, Robert. “Interview avec Robert Schuman” in R...

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