Cushwa Center Studies of Catholicism in 20th Century America Series

The Cushwa Center Studies of Catholicism in 20th Century America is a joint venture between the Cushwa Center and Cornell University Press. The series welcomes books by senior and junior scholars that illuminate the interactions between Catholics and other Americans. Books in the series explore the ways in which Catholics and their church have responded to, shaped, and been influenced by developments in American society, culture, politics, and religion throughout the 20th century

All Good Books Are Catholic Books (2013)
Print Culture, Censorship, and Modernity in Twentieth-Century America
by Una M. Cadegan
In All Good Books Are Catholic Books, Una M. Cadegan shows how the Church’s official position on literary culture developed over the crucial period from World War I to the close of Vatican II, and how Catholics developed a rationale by which they could both respect the laws of the Church as it sought to protect the integrity of doctrine and also engage the culture of artistic and commercial freedom in which they operated as Americans. Catholic literary figures including Flannery O’Connor and Thomas Merton are important to Cadegan’s argument, particularly as their careers and the reception of their work demonstrate shifts in the relationship between Catholicism and literary culture. Cadegan trains her attention on American critics, editors, and university professors and administrators who mediated the relationship among the Church, parishioners, and the culture at large.

Recasting Narratives of U.S. History
edited by R. Scott Appleby and Kathleen Sprows Cummings

American historians of race, politics, social theory, labor, and gender come together in this volume to address the distinctive presence and agency of Catholics as Catholics in the 20th century--a perspective that is almost entirely absent in both scholarly and popular works of history. Contributors consider how Catholics negotiated gender relations, raised children, thought about war and peace, navigated the workplace and the marketplace, and imagined their place in the national myth of origins and ends. A long overdue corrective, Catholics in the American Century restores Catholicism to its rightful place in the American story.

Contributors:  R. Scott Appleby, University of Notre Dame ; Lizabeth Cohen, Harvard University; Kathleen Sprows Cummings, University of Notre Dame; R. Marie Griffith, Washington University in St. Louis; David G. Gutiérrez, University of California, San Diego; Wilfred McClay, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga; John T. McGreevy, University of Notre Dame ; Robert Orsi, Northwestern University; Thomas Sugrue, University of Pennsylvania

The Crusader, the Movie, and the Soul of the Port of New York
by James T. Fisher

Site of the world's busiest and most lucrative harbor throughout the first half of the twentieth century, the Port of New York was also the historic preserve of Irish American gangsters, politicians, longshoremen's union leaders, and powerful Roman Catholic pastors. This is the demimonde depicted to stunning effect in Elia Kazan's On the Waterfront (1954) and into which James T. Fisher takes readers in this remarkable and engaging historical account of the classic film's backstory.

Catholic Religious Practice in Twentieth-Century America
edited by James M. O'Toole

In Habits of Devotion, four senior scholars take the measure of the central religious practices and devotions that by the middle of the twentieth century defined the "ordinary, week-to-week religion" of the majority of American Catholics. Their essays investigate prayer, devotion to Mary, confession, and the Eucharist as practiced by Catholics in the United States before and shortly after the Second Vatican Council.

Contributors: Joseph P. Chinnici, O.F.M., Franciscan School of Theology; Paula M. Kane, University of Pittsburgh; Margaret M. McGuinness, La Salle University; James M. O'Toole, Boston College

An American History
by Leslie Woodcock Tentler

As Americans rethought sex in the twentieth century, the Catholic Church's teachings on the divisive issue of contraception in marriage were in many ways central. In a fascinating history, Leslie Woodcock Tentler traces changing attitudes: from the late nineteenth century, when religious leaders of every variety were largely united in their opposition to contraception; to the 1920s, when distillations of Freud and the works of family planning reformers like Margaret Sanger began to reach a popular audience; to the Depression years, during which even conservative Protestant denominations quietly dropped prohibitions against marital birth control.

Ballots and Bibles (2003)
Ethnic Politics and the Catholic Church in Providence
by Evelyn Savidge Sterne

By the mid-nineteenth century, Providence, Rhode Island, an early industrial center, became a magnet for Catholic immigrants seeking jobs. The city created as a haven for Protestant dissenters was transformed by the arrival of Italian, Irish, and French-Canadian workers. By 1905, more than half of its population was Catholic—Rhode Island was the first state in the nation to have a Catholic majority. Civic leaders, for whom Protestantism was an essential component of American identity, systematically sought to exclude the city's Catholic immigrants from participation in public life, most flagrantly by restricting voting rights. Through her account of the newcomers' fight for political inclusion, Evelyn Savidge Sterne offers a fresh perspective on the nationwide struggle to define American identity at the turn of the twentieth century.

Politics, Faith, and the Power of Place in St. Paul
by Mary Lethert Wingerd

Are Minneapolis and St. Paul "Twin Cities" in proximity only? How can two cities, spoken of so often in one breath, differ so greatly in their histories and characteristics? Claiming the City traces the contours of St. Paul's "civic identity" to show how personal identities and political structures of power are fundamentally informed by the social geography of place. St. Paul proves a particularly fruitful site for such analysis because it has developed along a divergent path from that of Minneapolis, its sister city just across the Mississippi river.

Mexican Traditions in U.S. Catholicism
edited by Timothy Matovina and Gary Riebe-Estrella

Horizons of the Sacred explores the distinctive worldview underlying the faith and lived religion of Catholics of Mexican descent living in the United States. Religious practices, including devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe, celebration of the Day of the Dead, the healing tradition of curanderismo, and Good Friday devotions such as the Way of the Cross (Via Crucis), reflect the increasing influence of Mexican traditions in U.S. Catholicism, especially since Mexicans and Mexican Americans are a growing group in most Roman Catholic congregations.

Contributors: Gilbert R. Cadena, Cal Poly Pomona; Karen Mary Davalos, Loyola Marymount University; Orlando O. Espin, University of San Diego; Roberto S. Goizueta, Boston College; Luis D. Leon, University of Denver; Timothy Matovina, University of Notre Dame; Lara Medina, California State University Northridge; Gary Riebe-Estrella, S.V.D., Catholic Theological Union