Loyola University Chicago
1032 W. Sheridan Road
Chicago, IL 60660
Office: Crown Center, 3rd floor
Lake Shore Campus
Personal Web Page:
Dan Vaillancourt is Professor of Philosophy at Loyola University. He earned his B.A. in French Literature and Philosophy from St. Francis College, Biddeford, Maine, and his Ph.D. in Philosophy from DePaul University, Chicago, in 1976. His dissertation was entitled Stanislas Breton: The Principle of Human Transcendence; Man Making the World. He received a Fulbright Grant for dissertation research in Paris from 1971-72.
Dr. Vaillancourt came to the philosophy department in 1990 with the affiliation of Loyola University and Mundelein College. He had taught at Mundelein College for eighteen years, where he had also served as Chairperson of Humanities for five years and Dean of the Masters in Liberal Studies Program for three years.
Dr. Vaillancourt's primary areas of research are aesthetics, the philosophy of beauty, and philosophy of human nature. He is also interested in the philosophy of literature and the philosophy of suffering.
Dr. Vaillancourt has served as chairman of humanities and graduate school dean, but he considers aesthetics his expertise and passion. He completed formal training in the field by majoring at the undergraduate level in philosophy and French literature and by specializing at the doctoral level in phenomenology and existentialism, with extensive study in the intersection of philosophy and literature. He has won 15 regional and national grants and 12 teacher of the year awards/commendations. He has created and taught 12 undergraduate and graduate courses in aesthetics, ranging from Catholic Aesthetics and Philosophical Themes in Nobel Prize Literature to Philosophy and Theatre, and, of course, Aesthetics. His publications include two books, dozens of articles, and three translations. He also edited a national magazine, Life Beat, for four years. Currently, he is writing for his website (www.memoirforchange.org) and working on two books: Beauty: The Sources (a collection of sources on beauty from around the world), and Do Beauty Experiences Boost the Immune System? (a monograph that explores the intersection of aesthetics, neuroscience, and immunology by investigating the impact of beauty, via the brain, on the immune system). He is also leading an international project to gather the wisdom—through memoir—of nuns in different parts of the world. He dances and plays the tenor recorder. Like Dostoevsky, he believes beauty changes the world.
To learn more about Dr. Vaillancourt, go to his personal website: memoirforchange.org