I am thinking about going for my Ph.D. in Catholic Studies. It is a 4 to 6 year process of research on a topic of my choosing that, once approved, I will work on every day for half a decade. All of this depends on employment opportunities, only one of which supplies enough income while allowing ample room for pursuing the degree.
I am most excited to write a dissertation, to focus on a narrow topic if interest and develop it into something new and creative. I was told that most doctoral dissertations are dull, and not to make too much out of it, but I do not care. To me, the work of research, reading, and writing are always exciting challenges, even if the outcome is 200 pages of yawn-fest for anyone other than me.
In deciding on a topic I wanted it to be something that I am passionate about, something that is crucial, that I struggle with personally, and that will keep me up at night seeking answers.
But the thought of writing about catechesis for 4-6 years is not all that appealing to me. Nope, I think I came up with another idea, something that has been bothering me since I was 14 and something that I am constantly seeking an answer to, and constantly running into self-doubts, intellectual brick walls, and a lot of current argumentation in Catholic circles.
I think I am going to write about the relationship between ethics and economics, focusing particularly on Catholic Social Teaching from the Popes, the Distributism fostered by the Chester-Belloc School, and the small-but-growing Austrian School of Economics.