The War Against Catholicism: Liberalism and the Anti-Catholic Imagination in Nineteenth-century Germany

The War Against Catholicism: Liberalism and the Anti-Catholic Imagination in Nineteenth-century Germany

Paperback Social History, Popular Culture, & Politics in Germany (Paperback)

By (author) Michael B. Gross

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  • Publisher: The University of Michigan Press
  • Format: Paperback | 376 pages
  • Dimensions: 152mm x 226mm x 23mm | 499g
  • Publication date: 30 December 2005
  • Publication City/Country: Ann Arbor, MI
  • ISBN 10: 0472031309
  • ISBN 13: 9780472031306
  • Edition: New edition
  • Edition statement: New edition
  • Illustrations note: 13 b/w photographs, 12 tables
  • Sales rank: 637,460

Product description

Winner of the 2004 John Gilmary Shea Prize from the American Catholic Historical Association. After the defeat of liberalism in the Revolution of 1848, and in the face of the dramatic revival of popular Catholicism, German middle-class liberals used anti-Catholicism to orient themselves culturally in a new age. Michael B. Gross's study shows how anti-Catholicism and specifically the Kulturkampf - the campaign to break the power of the Catholic Church - were not simply attacks against the church, nor were they merely an attempt to secure state autonomy. Instead, Gross shows that the liberal attack on Catholicism was actually a complex attempt to preserve moral, social, political, and sexual order during a period of dramatic pressures for change. By offering a provocative reinterpretation of liberalism and its relationship to the German anti-Catholic movement, this work ultimately demonstrates that in Germany, liberalism itself contributed to a culture of intolerance that would prove to be a serious liability in the twentieth century. It will be of particular interest to students and scholars of culture, ideology, religion, and politics.

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Author information

Michael B. Gross is Associate Professor of History at East Carolina University.