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The Pope at War

07Jun7:00 pm8:00 pmThe Pope at War7:00 pm - 8:00 pm(GMT-04:00)

Event Details

Brooke Gladstone (On the Media) in conversation with David Kertzer on his new book The Pope at War


Pulitzer Prize winner and National Book Award finalist David I. Kertzer discusses his new book, The Pope at War, examining Pope Pius XII’s actions during World War II, including how he responded to the Holocaust. Kertzer is joined by Brooke Gladstone, host of WNYC’s On the Media.

David I. Kertzer is the Paul Dupee, Jr., University Professor of Social Science and professor of anthropology and Italian studies at Brown University, where he formerly served as provost. He is the author of 12 previous books, including The Pope and Mussolini, winner of the Pulitzer Prize, and The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara, a National Book Award finalist. In 2005 he was elected to membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Kertzer and his wife, Susan, live in Rhode Island and Maine.

Brooke Gladstone is host of On the Media. She is the recipient of two Peabody Awards, a National Press Club Award, an Overseas Press Club Award and many others you tend to collect if you hang out in public radio long enough. She also is the author of The Influencing Machine (W.W. Norton), a media manifesto in graphic form, listed among the top books of 2011 by The New Yorker, Publisher’s Weekly, Kirkus Reviews and Library Journal, and among the “10 Masterpieces of Graphic Nonfiction” by The Atlantic.


Newly revealed Vatican documents uncover a long-held secret: As war broke out, Pius XII used a Nazi prince to negotiate with Adolf Hitler. By David I. Kertzer

[…] Von Hessen explained that the National Socialists were divided into pro-Church and anti-Church factions that were “bitterly opposed to each other.” If the Catholic clergy would agree to confine itself to Church matters and stay out of politics, the pro-Church faction could prevail.

The Church, replied the pope, had no interest in involving itself in partisan politics. “Look at Italy. Here too there is an authoritarian government. And yet the Church can take care of the religious education of the young … No one here is anti-German. We love Germany. We are pleased if Germany is great and powerful.”

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