Zeitgeschichte in Lebensbildern. Aus dem deutschen Katholizismus des 19. und 20, Jahrhundertsed. by Jürgen Aretz, Rudolf Morsey, and Anton Rauscher (review)
- The Catholic Historical Review
- The Catholic University of America Press
- Volume 82, Number 4, October 1996
- pp. 733-735
- View Citation
- Additional Information
BOOK REVIEWS733 O'ConneU minimizes the significance of the baron's inteUectual contribution. Though thoroughly disproved by David G. Schultenover, O'ConneU ?efep^eß the canard that George TyrreU was"contemptuous or hostUe"toward the Summa Theologiae (p. 123). It is simply wrong to assert that the Modernists generaUy were "unable or unwilling to distinguish between good Scholasticism and bad, between the monumental achievement ofAquinas and the frequently trivial appUcations of it in the manuals written by his overly-zealous disciples" f. 344). O'ConneU is on target in the social and poUtical context, that the churchstate battle in France "served as the backdrop to the inteUectual crisis within CathoUcism" (p. 309). But many wUl contest the conclusion that "the aberrations shortly to be termed 'Modernist' by Pius X appeared to be—despite English and Italian outriders and German sympathizers—an overwhelmingly French phenomenon" f. 310). For ecclesiastico-poUtical reasons, Pius X may have been concerned primarily with extinguishing the Modernist fire in France and Italy, but Pascendi struck at the universal Church. O'ConneU writes that "hardly anything Like the phenomenon Pascendi caUed Modernism was to be found among German Catholics" (p. 356), but in feet only Rome's special poUtical relationship with Germany saved dozens of German Modernists (not merely sympathizers) from condemnation. (This is made clear in Otto Weiss's Der Modernismus in Deutschland:ein Beitrag zur Theologiegeschichte ,which appeared after Critics on Trial?) And whUe England may have been "a special case" (p. 356), it is disingenuous to conclude that TyrreU's condemnation was "more by reason of his ItaUan rather than his EngUsh connections" (p. 358). FinaUy, it is perplexing that O'ConneU relegates to a footnote Gabriel Daly's convincing argument that the primary author of the doctrinal section of Pascendi wasJoseph Lemius, and not Louis BiUot, S.J., and Monsignor Umberto Benigne It is, nevertheless, perversely satisfying to learn from O'ConneU that even Cardinal Merry del VaI disapproved of Benigni's secret and unseemly antiModernist terror campaign. Critics on Trial is an impressive narrative which merits a wide readership. But it must be read carefuUy. Despite enormous erudition and penetrating insights , the book remains (J hesitate to say only) an introduction for students seeking to understand the CathoUc Modernist Crisis. John D. Root Illinois Institute ofTechnology Zeitgeschichte in Lebensbildern. Aus dem deutschen Katholizismus des 19. und 20, Jahrhunderts, Band 7. Edited by Jürgen Aretz, RudoU Morsey, and Anton Rauscher. (Mainz: Matthias-Grünewald Verlag. 1994. Pp. 314. DM 48,-.) This is the seventh volume of a continuing series of biographical articles on prominent German CathoUcs of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The 734BOOK REVIEWS coverage is broad, sometimes providing detaUed accounts of the careers and works ofleaders and other dignitaries in the poUtical and ecclesiastical spheres, social theorists and activists, scholars, writers, and other German CathoUcs of some repute. The seri8s has undoubted value for experts in the field of German CathoUc studies, though some articles wiU disappoint them. The pubUsher and the editors have been eager to make the series attractive to two quite different groups, speciaUsts and members of the German CathoUc community who are interested in the history of their church, its various institutions and its most distinguished members. The authors are undoubtedly, as the pubUsher teUs us, scholars or other writers of name recognition, but their articles are not footnoted . Nor are they on occasion as analytical and critical as the trained scholar might expect. In the past century or so Germany has undergone profound changes and dislocations Ln the course of which CathoUc leaders had to make decisions which were painful to them and their co-reUgionists. In this series the editors and some of the authors have apparently decided that the amount of discomfort that they should impose on their German Catholic readers should be kept at a modest level. This is evident in the articles on Ludwig Kaas, the leader of the German Center Party from 1928 to 1933, in the first volume and on Ernst Lieber,who had led that party from 1893 to L902, in the fourth volume of the series. The reader is not adequately informed on the reasons why...