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American Freedom and Catholic Power [Hardcover]

Paul Blanshard
1.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Editorial Reviews


?The revision--the virtual rewriting--of this text will make its contribution to public knowledge of the whole area.?-Kirkus

From the Publisher

The revision--the virtual rewriting--of this text will make its contribution to public knowledge of the whole area.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 402 pages
  • Publisher: Praeger; New edition edition (November 16, 1984)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0313246203
  • ISBN-13: 978-0313246203
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.7 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 1.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,417,473 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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1.8 out of 5 stars
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A gross error by someone May 16, 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
To this book's title is appended the date =November 16, 1984=. The appended date is a gross error. Paul Blanshard died 27 January 1980. I already own both the 1949 and 1958 editions. I first read the latter in the summer of 1958! On the possibility this was a posthumous or memorial edition, I ordered it. What I got was a September 1960 printing of the 1958 edition. In October 1960 this copy was left lying on the floor of a chicken coop. After scraping 53 years of guano off, it was mailed to me with no documents enclosed inside the package. Whoa! To believe I have submitted a Request for refund is likewise an error. I insist upon a refund. This is a 5-star book, and Beacon Press would do well to consider a 21st Century release.
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23 of 35 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A Classic of Bigotry March 17, 2003
If any twentieth century book deserves the monniker "Epoch-changing," Blanshard's 1949 certainly does. Although it is a classic of anti-Catholic bigotry, American Freedom is distinguished from other screeds by an extensive set of footnotes and better than average research.
Blanshard is a master of the political spin. It is clear that he is, like many WASPs, terrified by the expanding Catholic minorities in the U.S.
As Mike Jones has documented in John Cardinal Krol and the Cultural Revolution, the Blanshard book helped stimulate a coordinated effort to nip Catholic power. First, an effort began to break up the Catholic neighborhoods in the major Eastern cities, thus diluting their power base in the legislatures. Second, the foundations funded research into a "Catholic contraceptive," which became the birth-control pill.
The book tries to look objective, but after fifty years even the most strident anti-Catholic will admit that the language and presentation are offensive. It is ironic that a nation that ended WWII with such animosity toward anti-Semitism continues to promote anti-Catholicism.
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21 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Paul Blanshard is not anti-Catholic; He is PRO-FREEDOM! February 14, 2004
Paul Blanshard was never an "anti-Catholic bigot." On the contrary, he was one of America's foremost advocates of true religious liberty maintained through strict separation of church and state! His writings only opposed the reactionary pre-Vatican 2 policies of the Roman Catholic hierarchy of his day. He never attacked Catholics as human beings or loyal Americans in any of his books.
In fact, his writings today are still timely when we are facing the same threats from the evangelical, fundamentalist Protestant Religious Right, which seeks to destroy separation of church and state through the current Bush administration's so-called "faith-based initiative." The Religious Right's current playbook is almost identical to the Catholic hierarchy Paul Blanshard so roundly criticized in his day.
With the acquiescence of all too many politicians in both parties, the Religious Right is eating away at our religious freedom through its incremental and cynical manipulation of the First Amendment by insisting that tax support for "faith-based" education and social services guarantee their free excercise of religion. This stands religious freedom on its head! Public funds are for secular education and social services only! Private funds are for religious schools and faith based social services. AMERICA, WAKE UP! If Paul Blanshard were alive today, he would be screaming out at the top of his lungs at what is happening in our country today.
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13 of 21 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Anti-Catholism in a Time Capsule June 1, 2005
Paul Blanshard's "American Freedom and Catholic Power became" was a Book of the Month Club recommendation and a 1949-1950 Best Seller due to its simple but biased message; "The Catholic problem is still with us." Unfortunately, Paul's study of loyal followers of the Pope and the menace they posed to American culture was nothing new: the Know-Nothings, the American Protective Association, and even the Klan had been saying essentially the same thing for well over a century. As such, this book has historical value as a candid view of religious paranoia vis-a-vis Catholic immigration -- beyond that, it's waste-bin filler.
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10 of 23 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Biased, bogus, bigoted, ridiculous and outdated January 28, 2006
I live in CE, a state of Brazil and I like to read books.

About twenty years ago, I tried to read this trash-book.This book is so bad, that I didn't ended it.

A trash-book is a bigoted book?This book is bigoted.

A trash-book is a false book?This book is false.

A trash-book is an outdated book?This book is outdated.

A trash-book is a biased book?This book is 100% biased.

In late 1940 and at beggining of 1950 decade, this book was a best-seller in USA.With the advance of the time, not even the author could believe, in these bogus claims.

The author itself, Paul Blanshard,at that time was a protestant preacher and claimed to be a freedom's champion, became later a communist and of course an atheist too.

The core's idea of this book is that, Catholic Church is the biggest menace to USA's freedom.

Well, what happened more than 50 years later?The opposite.

Every USA's foe is also, a Pope's foe.

See to example: Iran's president, North Korea's strong man, Fidel Castro,etc. are all non-catholics and also foe of catholicism and USA.

This book is bigoted, bogus, ridiculous and outdated.

Even if you are a bigoted anti-catholic person, there's better options to read, than this trash-book.
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