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Jerusalem, Jerusalem: How the Ancient City Ignited Our Modern Worldby James Carroll
Synopses & Reviews
In a bold and moving book that is sure to spark heated debate, the novelist and cultural critic James Carroll maps the profoundly troubling two-thousand-year course of the Churchs battle against Judaism and faces the crisis of faith it has provoked in his own life as a Catholic. More than a chronicle of religion, this dark history is the central tragedy of Western civilization, its fault lines reaching deep into our culture.
The Churchs failure to protest the Holocaust — the infamous silence” of Pius XII — is only part of the story: the death camps, Carroll shows, are the culmination of a long, entrenched tradition of anti-Judaism. From Gospel accounts of the death of Jesus on the cross, to Constantines transformation of the cross into a sword, to the rise of blood libels, scapegoating, and modern anti-Semitism, Carroll reconstructs the dramatic story of the Churchs conflict not only with Jews but with itself. Yet in tracing the arc of this narrative, he implicitly affirms that it did not necessarily have to be so. There were roads not taken, heroes forgotten; new roads can be taken yet. Demanding that the Church finally face this past in full, Carroll calls for a fundamental rethinking of the deepest questions of Christian faith. Only then can Christians, Jews, and all who carry the burden of this history begin to forge a new future.
Drawing on his well-known talents as a storyteller and memoirist, and weaving historical research through an intensely personal examination of conscience, Carroll has created a work of singular power and urgency. CONSTANTINE'S SWORD is a brave and affecting reckoning with difficult truths that will touch every reader.
"'Oh, Jerusalem, how often have I wept for you!' laments the psalmist. And well we should weep. For millennia, Jerusalem has been the meeting point of religion and culture, traditionalism and modernity, and the apparently inevitable violence that erupts over a particular faith's exclusive claim to the city. Carroll, author of the critically acclaimed Constantine's Sword, has given us one of the broadest and most balanced accounts in recent years of the city of King David — one centered on the concept of 'sacred violence' as a path to redemption, a vision long engendered by Jerusalem and all that it represents. But he has another agenda — to analyze and interpret the intersections of history, theology, philosophy, and popular culture in a way that offers hope of an emerging religion that 'celebrate life, not death.' Given the long history of violence and death surrounding both the physical Jerusalem and the 'imagined' city (e.g., America as a 'city on a hill'), is this even possible? The former Catholic priest remains optimistic that humanity will find a way to resolve the conflicts that are so much a part of its story. Conceptually profound, richly detailed, and wonderfully realized, this book brings to life the dynamic story of the divided city. (Mar.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)
From the author of the New York Times best-selling Constantine's Sword comes a richly layered history, fueled by powerful insight, of the ancient city at the epicenter of Christian, Jewish, and Muslim experience.
“Provocative . . . the book brims with splendid insights.” — Los Angeles Times
Jerusalem: the ancient City on a Hill, a place central to three major religions, a transcendent fantasy that ignites religious fervor unlike anywhere else on earth. James Carrolls urgent, masterly Jerusalem, Jerusalem uncovers the history of the city and explores how it came to define culture in both the Middle East and America.
Carroll shows how the New World was shaped by obsessions with Jerusalem, from Christopher Columbuss search for a westward route to the city, to the fascination felt by American presidents from Abraham Lincoln to Ronald Reagan. Heavenly Jerusalem defines the American imagination — and always the earthly city smolders. Jerusalem fever, inextricably tied to Christian fervor, is the deadly — unnamed — third party to the Israeli-Palestinian wars. Understanding this fever is the key that unlocks world history, and the diagnosis that gives us our best chance to reimagine peace.
“I dare you to read this book and see Jerusalem, or yourself, the same way.” — Bernard Avishai, author of The Hebrew Republic
"So provocative and illuminating that it should not be overlooked by anyone who cares about the future of Jerusalem." — Jewish Journal
Praise for Jerusalem, Jerusalem
"What a remarkable book! I was blown away by the breadth and depth of it. Another hugely important book from James Carroll, right there with Constantines Sword." — Reza Aslan, author of No god but God "A gripping account of how Jerusalem has fired the spiritual imagination of the West from Biblical times to the present — and a deeply personal meditation on the religious impulse itself, and its dark double, sacred violence. More than a rebuke to jihadists and religious extremists, this book challenges secularists who believe that, for modern Western societies, wars of religion are a thing of the past." — Michael Sandel, author of Justice: Whats the Right Thing To Do? "I dare you to read this book and see Jerusalem, or yourself, the same way." — Bernard Avishai, author of The Hebrew Republic "James Carrolls Jerusalem, Jerusalem should be required reading for all: it is a lucid, calm, deeply compelling history of the literal and symbolic significance of that city, at the heart and origins of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Marshaling an extraordinary range of sources, Carroll illuminates the interwoven violence and redemption that define Jerusalem in the world entire, up to this day." — Claire Messud, author of The Emperors Children
About the Author
His New York Times Bestseller Constantine's Sword is now the subject of an acclaimed documentary, directed by Oren Jacoby and distributed nationally by First Run Features and Red Envelope Entertainment.
Table of Contents
Contents Part one The Cross at Auschwitz 1. Sign of Folly 3 2. Stumbling Block to Jews 13 3. The Journey 19 4. My Mothers Clock 24 5. Passion Play 31 6. My Rabbi 37 7. Between Past and Future 58 Part two New Testament Origins of Jew Hatred 8. My Great-Uncle 67 9. Jesus, a Jew? 71 10. The Threshold Stone 89 11. Destroy This Temple 100 12. The Healing Circle 122 13. Paul, the Martyr of Shalom 135 14. Parting of the Ways 144 15. The Lachrymose Tradition: A Cautionary Note 150 Part three Constantine, Augustine, and the Jews 16. The Heart of This Story Is a Place 155 17. The Story of Constantine 165 18. The Cross and the Religious Imagination 172 19. The Vision of Constantine 178 20. The True Cross 195 21. Augustine Trembling 208 22. The Seamless Robe 220 23. The Danger of Ambivalence 229 Part four From Crusades to Conversionism 24. The War of the Cross 237 25. The Incident in Trier 246 26. Mainz Anonymous 257 27. The Blood Libel 268 28. Anselm: Why God Became Man 278 29. Abelard and Hélodse 290 30. Thomas Aquinas: Reason Against the Jews 301 Part five The Inquisition: Enter Racism 31. One Road 313 32. My Inquisition 319 33. Convivencia to Reconquista 322 34. Convert-Making: The Failure of Success 333 35. Expulsion in 1492 343 36. The Roman Ghetto 363 37. The Religious Response of the Jews 385 38. Shema Yisrael! 391 Part six Emancipation, Revolution, and a New Fear of Jews 39. Karl Marx, Second Son of Trier 401 40. Spinoza: From Rabbis to Revolution 406 41. Voltaire and the False Promise of Emancipation 414 42. Jew as Revolutionary, Jew as Financier 426 43. Revolution in Rome: The Popes Jews 439 44. Alfred Dreyfus and La Croix 450 45. The Uses of Antisemitism 464 46. Lucie and Madeleine 467 Part seven The Church and Hitler 47. From Christian Anti-Judaism to Eliminationist Antisemitism 475 48. Setting a Standard: The Church Against Bismarck 479 49. Eugenio Pacelli and the Surrender of German Catholicism 495 50. The Seamless Robe in 1933 501 51. Maria Laach and Reichstheologie 511 52. Pius XII: Last Days of the Roman Ghetto 523 53. Edith Stein and Catholic Memory 536
Part eight A Call for Vatican III 54. The Broad Relevance of Catholic Reform 547 55. Agenda for a New Reformation 559 56. Agenda Item 1: Anti-Judaism in the New Testament 561 57. Agenda Item 2: The Church and Power 570 58. Agenda Item 3: A New Christology 577 59. Agenda Item 4: The Holiness of Democracy 588 60. Agenda Item 5: Repentance 599 Epilogue: The Faith of a Catholic 605 Acknowledgments 619 Chronology 622 Notes 628 Bibliography 696 Index 720
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