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Catholicism, Politics and Society in Twentieth-Century France$
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Kay Chadwick

Print publication date: 2000

Print ISBN-13: 9780853239741

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5949/UPO9781846312779

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Catholicism and the Left in twentieth-century France

Catholicism and the Left in twentieth-century France

(p.142) 7 Catholicism and the Left in twentieth-century France
Catholicism, Politics and Society in Twentieth-Century France

Michael Kelly

Liverpool University Press

This chapter explores the relationship between Catholicism and the Left in twentieth-century France. It first considers the 1926 papal condemnation of the Action française, a far-Right anti-Republican movement led by Charles Maurras, for subordinating religion to politics. The chapter then turns to the Action catholique de la jeunesse française, whose programme of catholicisme intégral was intended to involve Catholics in public life outside the influence of Action française, as well as its programme of nationalisme intégral. The chapter also looks at Esprit, one of several minority groupings with diverse aims and objectives which represented channels for Catholic Left-wing activity, and its open declaration for the Left. It argues that the main tendue was the root of major long-term ideological developments in the relationship between Catholics and the Left, and, finally, discusses the process of aggiornamento undertaken by Vatican II (1962–1965).

Keywords:   religion, Catholicism, Left, France, Action française, politics, jeunesse française, Catholics, Esprit, Vatican II

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