Phenomenology Booth, Pt. 1 / Donald Wallenfang / The Twining of Phenomenology and Metaphysics

The Phenomenology Booth is a virtual exhibit devoted to the philosophical field of phenomenology. The exhibit features a set of interviews with philosophers and theologians working in phenomenology, as well as a selection of Wipf and Stock’s books in phenomenology.

In this first interview for our phenomenology booth, we sit down with Donald Wallenfang, professor of theology and philosophy at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit. Dr. Wallenfang is the author and editor of many books with Cascade and Wipf & Stock, including a Cascade Companion on phenomenology and volumes on Emmanuel Levinas and Edith Stein.

In this episode, Dr. Wallenfang and I discuss Jean-Luc Marion, Emmanuel Levinas, Edith Stein, John Paul II, the relationship between phenomenology and metaphysics, and much more.

Donald Wallenfang

Donald Wallenfang, OCDS, PhD is a Secular Discalced Carmelite and Professor of Theology and Philosophy at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit. He received his MTS from St. Norbert College and his doctorate from Loyola University Chicago. He has published twelve books as well as numerous articles and book chapters on a variety of topics in Catholic theology and philosophy, including Carmelite spirituality, sacramental theology, theological anthropology, phenomenology and metaphysics. Wallenfang served in full-time Catholic youth ministry for nine years. He has been married for over twenty-two years and has six children.

Show Notes


The Phenomenology Booth:

Author page:

Dr. Wallenfang’s page:


Engelland, Chad. Phenomenology.

Heidegger, Martin. Being and Time.

Husserl, Edmund. The Idea of Phenomenology.

———. Logical Investigations. 2 vols.

John Paul II. Fides et Ratio.

Levinas, Emmanuel. Ethics and Infinity: Interviews with Philippe Nemo.

———. Otherwise than Being, or Beyond Essence.

———. Totality and Infinity: An Essay on Exteriority.

Marion, Jean-Luc. Being Given: Toward a Phenomenology of Givenness.

———. God Without Being: Hors-Texte.

———. “Sketch of a Phenomenological Concept of Sacrifice.”

Robbins, Jill, ed. Is It Righteous to Be?: Interviews with Emmanuel Levinas.

Rosenzweig, Franz. The Star of Redemption.

Sokolowski, Robert. Introduction to Phenomenology.

Stein, Edith. Knowledge and Faith.

———. Potency and Act: Studies Towards a Philosophy of Being.

Wallenfang, Donald. Dialectical Anatomy of the Eucharist: An Étude in Phenomenology.

———. Emmanuel: Levinas and Variations on God with Us.

———. Human and Divine Being: A Study on the Theological Anthropology of Edith Stein.

———. Phenomenology: A Basic Introduction in the Light of Jesus Christ.

Zahavi, Dan. Husserl’s Phenomenology.

———. Phenomenology: The Basics.


(01:48) – How phenomenology is like Apple computers

(07:46) – Some good introductory books

(10:07) – Studying with Jean-Luc Marion

(15:08) – Wading through the jargon

(20:13) – Reconciling phenomenology and metaphysics

(27:18) – Emmanuel Levinas and/vs. Jean-Luc Marion

(32:08) – Phenomenology as ecumenical endeavor

(35:46) – Levinas and Stein in light of the Holocaust

(40:46) – Phenomenology’s contributions to theology


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