From Library Journal
Chair of the social sciences division at Boston University, Corrin presents a thoughtful and well-crafted book on political Catholicism, examining the relationship of the Catholic Church to modernity in general and to democracy in particular. The common wisdom in American academic circles is that, until the Second Vatican Council, the Catholic Church had been consistent in its opposition to post-Enlightenment culture and in its authoritarian structures, with just a few exceptions. Corrin disagrees. He cites the work and influence of Catholics through the second half of the 19th century (e.g., Frdrick Ozanman, Bishop Wilhelm von Ketteler) and the works of Anglo-American thinkers in the early 20th century (e.g., Paulist Father James Gillis, laywoman Dorothy Day), along with the social encyclicals of Leo XIII in 1891 and Pius XI in 1931, to argue that the Catholic Church has long enjoyed "a rich pluralist religious tradition, which could be drawn upon to address the challenges of modernity." Corrin's endnotes are excellent, not only specifying the history of the church's engagement with modernity but also locating the present state of the question in the church's ongoing dialog with its ambient culture. This important study deserves a place in both university and seminary libraries and in any library with a Catholic constituency. David I. Fulton, Coll. of St. Elizabeth, Morristown, NJ
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"... CATHOLIC INTELLECTUALS AND THE CHALLENGE OF DEMOCRACY is an estimable, weighty work of scholarship that deserves careful, respectful reading." -- The Chesterton Review, Spring/Summer 2003, Vol. XXIX, No 182
"... a rewarding volume filled with colorful characters, insightful comments ..., and revealing information ..." -- Theological Studies, March 2004, Vol. 65 No. 1
"Corrin [should] be congratulated for looking at the story from a broad, international perspective, and for provoking ... important questions...." -- H-Net Reviews, February 2004
"The subject itself is fascinating ... As a historical document it has much to offer." -- Review of Politics, Spring 2003, Vol. 65 No. 2