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So Conceived and So DedicatedIntellectual Life in the Civil War Era North$
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Lorien Foote and Kanisorn Wongsrichanalai

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780823264476

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2015

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823264476.001.0001

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“This Most Unholy and Destructive War”

“This Most Unholy and Destructive War”

Catholic Intellectuals and the Limits of Catholic Patriotism

(p.217) “This Most Unholy and Destructive War”
So Conceived and So Dedicated

William Kurtz

Fordham University Press

This chapter discusses how U.S. Catholic intellectuals split over the meaning and purpose of the American Civil War. It examines a variety of Catholic intellectuals from the clergy and laity and from the three main ethnic Catholic groups: the Irish, the Germans, and native-born Americans. Although some, such as Orestes Brownson, saw the war as a chance to prove Catholics’ patriotism and defeat nativism forever, other more conservative thinkers, such as James McMaster, opposed the war, emancipation, and what they perceived as the radical social agenda of Abraham Lincoln’s government. In the end, the alienating experience of the war helped accelerate the growth of a separate Catholic subculture in the United States.

Keywords:   William Kurtz, Catholic, Orestes Brownson, James McMaster, Nativism, Patriotism, Emancipation, Conservative, Subculture, American Civil War

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