Mary Hirschfeld earned her Ph.D. in economics from Harvard University in 1989, specializing in the fields of macroeconomics and economic history. She was a professor of economics at Occidental College from 1988 to 2003 and she also served as Chair of the Department of Economics and as a member of several committees, including the institution’s Educational Policy Committee. Following a conversion to Catholicism, she left her position to study moral theology at Notre Dame, earning her Master of Theological Science degree in 2005. She is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the field of moral theology at Notre Dame. Her dissertation focuses on a Thomistic framework for thinking about economics, with an emphasis on consumption.
In the field of economics, Professor Hirschfeld has explored research interests in feminist economics and heterodox approaches to economic theory. She has taught a variety of courses on topics that include the development of capitalism, macroeconomics, financial markets, economics and philosophy, European history, and persecution in America. She is the author of several articles on economics in the Review of Economics and Statistics, the Journal of Economic Education, and History of Political Economy, as well as a recent article on moral theology in the Journal of the Society of Christian Ethics. In 2010, Professor Hirschfeld was awarded a Charlotte W. Newcombe Doctoral Dissertation Fellowship.