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Maureen O’Connell, Ph.D.

Professor, Department of Religion

Areas of Expertise:

Christian/Catholic social ethics Racial justice Racism The arts and social justice


Ph.D., Theological Ethics, Boston College B.A., History, Saint Joseph’s University


Maureen O’Connell, Ph.D., serves on the board of the Society for the Arts in Religious and Theological Studies and is a member of St. Vincent De Paul parish in the Germantown section of Philadelphia. She is also a member of Philadelphians Organizing to Witness, Empower, and Rebuild (POWER), an interfaith federation of 90 faith communities committed to making Philadelphia the city of “just love” through a more just wage for workers, fair funding for public schools, immigration reform, and decarceration.

O’Connell’s current research explores racial identity formation, racism, and racial justice in Catholic institutions of higher education. She authored Compassion: Loving Our Neighbor in an Age of Globalization (Orbis Books, 2009) and If These Walls Could Talk: Community Muralism and the Beauty of Justice (The Liturgical Press, 2012), which won the College Theology Book of the Year Award in 2012 and the Catholic Press Association’s first place for books in theology in 2012.

Media appearances: 6ABC , Washington Post, Huffington Post, U.S. Catholic, National Catholic Reporter, America Magazine, Commonweal Magazine