AboutSean Hannan (Ph.D. University of Chicago, 2016) is an Assistant Professor in the Humanities at MacEwan University in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. His research focuses on the intellectual history of Christianity, with emphases on late antiquity, North Africa, and the philosophy of time. While his doctoral project dealt with temporality in the works of Augustine of Hippo, his current research broadens out to incorporate alternative accounts of time drawn from antiquity and the Middle Ages. At MacEwan, he has a mandate to make use of methods from the digital humanities when teaching courses on ancient, medieval, and early modern history.
EducationPh.D. (University of Chicago, 2016)
M.A. (University of Chicago, 2008)
B.A., Hons. (University of Alberta, 2007)
Publications“The Alienated Interiority of Cogitatio.” Re-Thinking Augustine on Interiority. Eds. Matthew W. Knotts, Anthony Dupont, & Gerald Boersma. Brill, Forthcoming.
“Demonic Historiography & the Historical Sublime in Augustine’s City of God.” Studia Patristica. Forthcoming.
“To See Coming: Augustine and Heidegger on the Arising and Passing Away of Things.” Medieval Mystical Theology: the Journal of the Eckhart Society 21, no. 1 (2012), 75-91.
ProjectsBelatedness: Augustine on Transformation in Time & History
My current manuscript-length project incorporates Augustine’s account of temporality into his broader description of life within time and history. This requires taking the difficulties of temporality as discussed in Book XI of the Confessions
and putting them into conversation with Augustine’s other writings (including the City of God
). The end goal is to see how Augustine’s understanding of time bears upon his understanding of transformation, both personal and historical. That, in turn, helps us to reflect on the relationship to temporality we ourselves assume whenever we talk about personal conversion or historical change.
Digital Pedagogies in the History of Christianity
As part of my Digital Humanities mandate at MacEwan University, I have been working to craft new assignments that organically incorporate digital resources, ranging from mapping programs to timeline-creation software and beyond. The goal is not simply to ‘spice up’ the syllabus, but to rethink course design in light of twenty-first-century tools. As a corollary to that project, I have been trying to publish more pieces online, aiming to incorporate materials gleaned from my experiments in digital pedagogy, while also connecting the history of Christianity to ongoing debates both inside and outside of the academy. A sampling of such online offerings can be found below:
“Scholarly Labour and the Fantasy of Self-Fulfillment,” May 2017, Craft of Teaching, University of Chicago Divinity School:
“The Travails of Trying to Go Digital: from the Humanities to the Digital Humanities,” January 2017, Craft of Teaching, University of Chicago Divinity School:
“Twilight of the Textbooks: Smashing Idols through Classroom Debate & Dialogue,” November 2016, Craft of Teaching, University of Chicago Divinity School:
“A Hypothetical Miracle That Could Occur: Rudy Giuliani’s Augustine & Trump’s Future,” November 2016, Sightings, University of Chicago Divinity School:
History of Christian Thought research site: https://historyofchristianthoughtblog.wordpress.com/
Upcoming Talks and Conferences“Tempus Refugit: Reimagining Pilgrimage as Migrancy in Augustine’s City of God,” American Academy of Religion, Boston, MA, November 2017.
“The Temporality of Grief & Joy in Augustine’s Confessions,” North American Patristics Society Annual Meeting, Chicago, IL, May 2017.
“Monica’s Visionary Hermeneutics: Augustine & Gerson on the Uncertainty of Dreams,” International Congress on Medieval Studies, Kalamazoo, MI, May 2017.
MembershipsNorth American Patristics Society
American Academy of Religion