History Faculty Publications

Title

Doing 'True Science': The Early History of the 'Institutum Divi Thomae,' 1935-1951

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

10-2002

Publication Source

Catholic Historical Review

Abstract

This essay focuses on the origins and early history of the Institutum Divi Thomae (hereafter referred to as the IDT or Institutum), thus describing one particularly rich episode illustrating the relationship between American Catholicism and science during the middle of the twentieth century. The IDT was established by the Archdiocese of Cincinnati in 1935; its faculty and students, while working in the area of cancer research, published hundreds of scientific and technical papers, developed a number of commercial products, and received considerable publicity in both the religious and secular press during the first two decades of its existence. However, with its gradual decline beginning in the 1950s and the closing of its doors by the 1980s, the IDT vanished without a trace from historians' radar screens.

Yet if we are to understand more fully the IDT's accomplishments, the place of science within Catholic culture in twentieth-century America, and the science-religion relationship in an operational institutional setting, this story becomes an important one.

Inclusive pages

702-722

ISBN/ISSN

0008-8080

Comments

Permission documentation is on file.

Publisher

Catholic University of America Press

Volume

88

Issue

4

Peer Reviewed

yes