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The Popes Against the Jews: The Vatican's Role in the Rise of Modern Anti-Semitism
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The Popes Against the Jews: The Vatican's Role in the Rise of Modern Anti-Semitism

4.01 of 5 stars 4.01  ·  rating details  ·  91 ratings  ·  12 reviews
In this meticulously researched, unflinching, and reasoned study, National Book Award finalist David I. Kertzer presents shocking revelations about the role played by the Vatican in the development of modern anti-Semitism. Working in long-sealed Vatican archives, Kertzer unearths startling evidence to undermine the Church’s argument that it played no direct role in the spr ...more
Paperback, 355 pages
Published September 24th 2002 by Vintage (first published 2001)
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Lewis Weinstein
Kertzer presents a methodical fact-based case that utterly destroys many of the self-serving statements and actions of the Catholic Church during and after the Nazi years.

He begins with the 1998 report of a Vatican Commission titled "We Remember: A Reflection on the Shoah." Pope John Paul II had asked the Commission to determine what responsibility - if any - the Church bore for the Holocaust. The Vatican report predictably denies any link between the attitudes of Christians toward the Jews pro
Eye-opening book about the relentless anti-Semitic propaganda campaign by the Catholic Church from the fall of Napoleon in 1815 to World War II, drawn from archives of the Vatican made publicly available in 1998. After reading this book, the existence of popular European attitudes toward the Jews that made the holocaust possible will n longer be a mystery - and the book does not even address the many Protestant, Orthodox, and nationalistic anti-Semitic efforts going on at the same time. It shows ...more
Laurence O'Bryan
A tremendous, detailed and devastating account of the roots of the Holocaust.

I congratulate David on exposing the deceit that has covered up the clear responsibility the Catholic Church holds in one of the most horrific acts of genocide every perpetrated.

Pius XII should have stood in the dock at Nuremberg as an accessory to the Holocaust. I see it as my mission to spread the word of the evil ideas the Catholic Church spread through its antisemitism over many decades in the lead up to the Holoca
Shea Mastison
A most excellent historical account of the Vatican's role in the rise of modern anti-Semitism. Kertzer covers centuries worth of Papal prejudice; and discusses the various laws and social customs used by the Catholic hierarchy to persecute the Jewish people living within the Holy Roman Empire.

Not only is this book an indictment of the proto-fascists running the Catholic Church for much of modern history; but it also makes a compelling case for the necessity of church and state separation, as we
B Kevin
In this book, Brown University Professor David Kertzer's book refutes the Church's contention that the Holocaust was due to "an anti-Judaism that was essentially more sociological and political than religious." Rather, he shows, using long-sealed Church archives which were only recently opened, that European antisemitism was "in no small part due to the efforts of the Roman Catholic Church itself." I have a lot of histories about Germany and WWII, but I have to admit that I was surprised to lear ...more
iain meek
A very heavy read. Not a great writer.
Also a very heavy subject- a trawl thro previously secret (1998?) Vatican archives showing how the Catholic church has been anti-semitic for centuries along with fine hair splitting about OK Christian ant- semitism and dreadful anti-semitism by others including the Italian fascists and the Nazis. Apparently the Italian fascists were considered wrong to outlaw Jewish converts to Catholicism but correct, according to the Church, to outlaw all other jews.
Not su
Frank Cardenas
A book that opened my eyes to the role of the church in the world wars, nobody would fool me anymore and I find myself to be more tolerant; though the revelations regarding the treatment of Jews are very horrendous -but truthful- the contents were fascinating; this is a book we all catholics should read, that would make us wonder whether we should continue believing in an institution that was supposed to be helpful, accepting of anyone without any relevance to race or... religion! Thanks for con ...more
Rushay Booysen
The Vatican's link to its anti anti-semitism influence that predated the Nazi horror camps.Lengthy research that dates back to the 1700's im not sure if the Vatican ever came clean.This book researched that influence and how it influenced anti-semitism as we know it in the world
Dan Petegorsky
I read this some years back but am posting it now in "honor" of Pope Benedict's rehabilitation of a Holocaust denier. It's one of the best books I've read on at least one aspect of the history of anti-Semitism.
Hailey Franks
Heartbreaking and insightful. A book all should read.
Timothy McCluskey
This is an excellent treatment of the Vatican's complicity during WWII. The continuing scandal is that the Vatican now wants to canonize him
Zach Opsitnick
A disturbing and telling view of the period of history that the Catholic church doesn't want to acknowledge because of its horrid nature.
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