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This is the compelling story of Pope Pius XI's secret relations with Benito Mussolini. A ground-breaking work, based on seven years of research in the Vatican and Fascist archives by US National Book Award-finalist David Kertzer, it will forever change our understanding of the Vatican's role in the rise of Fascism in Europe. Both Pope Pius XI and Mussolini came to power in Rome in 1922. One was scholarly and devout, the other a violent bully. Yet they also had traits in common. Both had explosive tempers. Both bristled at the charge of being the patsy of the other. Both demanded unquestioned…mehr

Produktbeschreibung
This is the compelling story of Pope Pius XI's secret relations with Benito Mussolini. A ground-breaking work, based on seven years of research in the Vatican and Fascist archives by US National Book Award-finalist David Kertzer, it will forever change our understanding of the Vatican's role in the rise of Fascism in Europe. Both Pope Pius XI and Mussolini came to power in Rome in 1922. One was scholarly and devout, the other a violent bully. Yet they also had traits in common. Both had explosive tempers. Both bristled at the charge of being the patsy of the other. Both demanded unquestioned obedience from their subordinates, whose knees literally quaked in fear of provoking their wrath. Both came to be disillusioned by the other, yet dreaded what would happen if their alliance were to end. The book unravels for the first time the key role played between pope and dictator by the shadowy Jesuit go-between, dubbed Mussolini's Rasputin. It also reveals the details of the secret agreement worked out by Mussolini with the pope's personal envoy, offering Vatican support for Italy's notorious, anti-Semitic 'racial laws'. And dramatic new light is shed on the controversial figure of Eugenio Pacelli, who (as Pope Pius XII) would later come to be idolized by some and reviled by others for his silence during the Holocaust. In his role as Vatican Secretary of State, Pacelli had to struggle to keep the pope's explosive temper from leading to a break with both Mussolini and Nazi Germany, as the Italian dictator increasingly embraced the German Fuehrer, whom Pius detested. With the recent opening of the Vatican archives covering Pius XI's papacy, the full story of the two men's relationship can now be told for the first time. It is an account that destroys the widely accepted myth of a heroic Church doing battle with the Fascist regime. On the contrary, as David Kertzer shows, Mussolini would not have been able to impose his dictatorship on Italy without the pope's support. In exchange, the pope expected Mussolini to use his repressive reach to enforce Catholic morality - and return the Church to a position of power in Italy.

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  • Produktdetails
  • Verlag: Oxford University Press
  • Seitenzahl: 592
  • Erscheinungstermin: 27.02.2014
  • Englisch
  • ISBN-13: 9780191025280
  • Artikelnr.: 40501636
Autorenporträt
David Kertzer is Paul Dupee University Professor of Social Science at Brown University, where he is also professor of anthropology and Italian studies. His Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara was a finalist for the National Book Award in the U.S. in 1997, and he has twice received the Marraro Prize from the Society for Italian Historical Studies for the best work on Italian history. His 2001 book, The Popes Against the Jews, a look at the Vatican's role in the rise of modern anti-Semitism, has been published in several languages. He is co-founder former co-editor of the Journal of Modern Italian Studies. In 2005 Kertzer was elected a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. From 2006 to 2011 he was the Provost of Brown University.
Rezensionen
David Kertzer has an eye for a story, an ear for the right word, and an instinct for human tragedy. They all come together in The Pope and Mussolini to document, with meticulous scholarship and novelistic flair, the complicity between Pius XI and the Fascist leader in creating an unholy alliance between the Vatican and a totalitarian government rooted in corruption and brutality. This is a sophisticated blockbuster. Joseph J. Ellis, Pulitzer Prize winning author of Revolutionary Summer

Much more attention has been given to the Vatican s compromises and complicity with Hitler, but Kertzer tells a fascinating and tragic story of its self-interested support for Mussolini when he was vulnerable early on. The New Yorker

Revelatory . . . [a] detailed portrait of the inner workings of the Vatican in this period . . . The general outlines of this story have always been matters of public record, but Kertzer s book deepens and alters our understanding considerably. The portrait that emerges from it suggests a much more organic and symbiotic relationship between the Church and fascism. Rather than seeing the Church as having passively accepted fascism as a fait accompli, Kertzer sees it as having provided fundamental support to Mussolini in his consolidation of power and the establishment of dictatorship in Italy. The New York Review of Books

Gripping storytelling . . . a book whose narrative strength is as impressive as its moral subtlety . . . Kertzer has uncovered a fascinating tale of two irascible and often irrational potentates, and gives us an account of some murky intellectual finagling, and an often startling investigation of the exercise of power. The Guardian

Captivating . . . the real Da Vinci Code only it s rigorously documented and far less implausible. San Francisco Chronicle

The papacy of Pius XI remained essentially a foil for discussing his successor. Kertzer s excellent volume will change all of that. . . . From the outset of his new book, Kertzer deftly reconstructs the parallel lives of Achille Ratti, who became Pius XI, and of Benito Mussolini, both men whose beginnings do not point to the historic role that they began to play in 1922. The narration unfolds along the separate political, ideological, and institutional backgrounds of the Pope s and Duce s careers and brings up in fascinating detail the issues on which their interests converged and clashed. . . . Kertzer s essential book reveals a window on this sordid history a window that for a long time was shuttered, but will not be obscured anymore. The New Republic

Stunning . . . remarkable . . . Kertzer authoritatively banishes decades of denial and uncertainty about the Vatican's relationship with Italy s fascist state. The Christian Science Monitor

A capstone on David Kertzer s already crucial work, The Pope and Mussolini carefully and eloquently advances the painful but necessary truth of Vatican failure to meet its greatest moral test. This is history for the sake of justice. James Carroll, National Book Award winning author of Constantine s Sword
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