David Lebovitch Dahl
Last modified: September 2018
In Italy the Jesuit order has been more often the object of polemics than of historical scholarship, and historical scholarship on the Society has been profoundly politicized and polarized. Modern Italian historiography has been marked, among a variety of other social and political struggles, by culture wars between champions of the principles of the French Revolution and of the liberal state on the one side and defenders of the Catholic Church on the other. And the Jesuits were often seen as some of the most active and influential guardians of the policies of the Holy See. This is true of the time of the reestablishment of the order and the restoration of the ancien régime in the Italian states in the early nineteenth century, as well as for the period of unification in the 1860s, the invasion of Rome in 1870, and the ensuing “cold war” between the Vatican and the Italian state that continued with variations until the signing of the Lateran Treaty in 1929. During the two decades of fascist rule and after the Second World War the polemics transformed under the influence of the divide between fascists and anti-fascists, and later the rivalries between socialists, communists, liberals and Christian Democrats. Around 1990, the manners in which the church enacted influence in Italian society changed again with the collapse of the postwar political system and the Christian Democratic Party.
As a consequence of the deeply conflictual relations between church and state in Italy, ecclesiastical historiography was traditionally rather resistant to modern critical scholarship, while the scholarship aligned with the liberal or fascist state seldom paid much attention to Catholicism. Historiography on the church in Italy, therefore, has had a somehow parochial character. The more so since, despite Catholicism’s international nature, there has been relatively little interchange between international and local Italian scholarship, and a comparative, transnational or global perspective on the Italian situation has been mostly absent. However, after World War II the boundaries have slowly loosened: new attention was given to the Catholics, who had been at the margins of the conventional historiography of the Italian nation state. While the studies of the church had not become much influenced by new approaches towards social history and Marxism, after Vatican Council II (1962–65) interest emerged in reconstructing the history of the church, and its relation to modernism, fascism, Judaism, female Catholics and a variety of other less studied themes. In recent years, the growing interest in local realities and social and cultural issues have caused some historians to express concern that the field of Italian church history has been afflicted by dispersion and the lack of comprehensive accounts.1
The historiography on the Jesuits in Italy after 1814 is shaped by these conditions. Very little has been written about the historiography on the Italian Jesuits, and few professional historians have attempted to write comprehensive histories of the order in Italy in the modern period. Giacomo Martina’s Storia della Compagnia di Gesù in Italia stands virtually alone as a modern scholarly account and is therefore crucial and indispensable for any study both of the history of the Jesuits and of the history of historiography on Jesuits in Italy after the restoration.
This study investigates some developments in the historical writings about the Jesuits in Italy from 1814 to the present. It bases, apart from Martina’s work, to a great extent on the meticulous bibliographies of Lázló Polgár, S.J. (for the period from 1900 to 2000) and Paul Begheyn, S.J. (for 2000–15). The material is vast and a few more or less arbitrary limitations have been necessary. The literature on the international institutions in Rome, related to the Vatican, in which Jesuits played a leading or influential role, such as the Gregorian University, the Biblical Institute and the Vatican Radio, has been dealt with only minimally. The same counts for the copious studies related to Jesuit art and architecture.
The Nineteenth Century
Neither Italy, nor the Jesuits in Italy, were the subject of modern historiography before 1861, when the various states of the Peninsula were conquered or united into a new nation state. Before the 1860s, historical interest was mainly focused upon the existing states, on local realities, or on biographies. Five Jesuit provinces, the Sicilian, Neapolitan, Roman, Veneto-Milanese and Piedmontese, corresponded roughly to the historical entities that preceded the unified state. The system of five provinces continued well beyond unification—a single Italian province was not established until 1978. This perhaps reflects deeper characteristics of Italian history: differentiation, particularism and attachment to local identities.
During the nineteenth century very little was written on the history of the Jesuits in the five provinces. What was written was influenced profoundly by the tensions between ancien régime restoration and liberal opposition—before unification—and between advocates of the liberal state and clerical opposition after. This is reflected in accounts of the upheavals in 1848, as well as in debates concerning the legitimacy of the practice of spiritual exercises and in conflicts between the state and the Jesuits over the education of the Collegio Romano.2
Before unification, the sixth volume of Jacques Crétineau Joly’s Histoire religieuse, politique et littéraire de la Compagnie de Jésus had defended the order in Italy from a legitimist and anti-revolutionary point of view.3 After unification foreign and domestic academic observers of liberal orientation tended to count the Jesuits among the staunchest of reactionaries, emphasizing the very substantial influence exerted by the order in the field of education and on various levels of state and civil society.4
The Early Twentieth Century
Towards the end of the nineteenth century and in the early twentieth century, the relations between state and church in Italy were becoming less hostile, despite the prevailing anti-modernism of the Vatican, and the Catholics gradually sought and obtained increased influence in Italian society.
In the same period the international rise of modern scientific history, in particular inspired from Germany, began to see effects in Italy. A series of Italian national historical congresses and organizations, formed in the late nineteenth century, were accompanied by the foundation of historical journals. The history of the Catholic Church and the Jesuits remained a marginal part of these developments, which were mainly set within the frame of liberal nation building. However, the Jesuits were occasionally treated in historical journals of this new generation, such as the Archivio storico per le provincie parmensi and the Bollettino storico piacentino.5
In part as answers to this, new clerical journals emerged as well. The Bollettino ufficiale della curia vescovile di Piacenza began publishing in 1914, eight years after Stefano Fermi had started his Bollettino in Piacenza.6 The Jesuit Apostolato della preghiera started around 1900 in Naples and the Rivista di filosofia neo-scolastica was founded by Agostino Gemelli (1878–1959) in Milan in 1909.7
An important point of dispute between the secular and Catholic intellectuals evolved around the evaluations of the historical significance of neo-Thomism. In 1911, philosopher and future fascist minister of education, Giovanni Gentile (1875–1944) argued that the neo-Thomist revival, largely promoted by Italian Jesuits, being a reaction against liberal national revolution after 1870, was a “negative moment” in the development of Italian thought.8 The later professor at the Catholic University of Milan, Amato Masnovo, replied in Rivista di filosofia neo-scolastica that neo-Thomism, rather than an “embellished cadaver” was a “renaissance,” advocating that the restoration of Thomism had been a part of the religious political agency of the most important Italian Jesuit organ, La Civiltà cattolica, already since its start in 1850.9 The debate concerning neo-scholasticism was part of a wider cultural battle promoted by Gentile over Italian nation building and church-state relations.10
No attempts were made to write broader studies on the Jesuits in Italy, but an increasing number of “memories” and “recollections” about local Jesuit communities and institutions, written by Jesuits, were emerging.11 These included republications of accounts written in the nineteenth century and some of the publications demonstrated aspirations towards scientific history in declarations to engage in “contemporary history” based on “unedited sources.”12
Probably the most influential history of the Jesuits of this period was written by Enrico Rosa, S.J., who was to become the director of La Civiltà cattolica from 1914 to 1931. Published first in 1914 with a second edition in 1930 and a third in 1957, it did not focus on Italy, but was a narration of the history of the Society from the foundation until Rosa’s own days. In the 1930 edition, which was expanded to include the generalate of Włodzimierz Ledóchowski (1915–42), Rosa concluded that the order had continued until the present to deserve the love of the popes and stated explicitly that he had renounced documentation and reference to sources in favor of reaching a wider audience.13
The Fascist Period and the Second World War
The rise in scientific historical interest in Jesuit studies seemed to stagnate after the ascent to power of Mussolini (1883–1945) in 1922. To judge from the available bibliographies, the annual number of publications remained on roughly the same level during 1922–45 compared to the period 1900–22. Under the new levels of control of the fascist regime, debates were muted. However, it is as if the divides between Jesuit historians and scholars of liberal and socialist orientation had deepened and stiffened.
On the one side Jesuit historians continued to publish through a broader variety of lay and clerical journals and presses.14 Pietro Pirri, S.J., the house historian of La Civiltà cattolica who had entered the Society in 1919, started working on sources concerning the Order in Italy, publishing both in La Civiltà cattolica and elsewhere.15 One of the main interests of the Jesuit historians continued to be the revival of neo-Scholasticism. The judgment of Paolo Dezza, S.J. might be telling of his historical philosophical outlook more generally: neo-Thomism meant freeing medieval scholastic philosophy from the suffocating garments inflicted upon it by “the centuries of decadence.”16
On the other side of the chasm, the Jesuit order was seen as exponent of anti-liberalism. In the 1920s, the implementation of Gentile’s educational reforms was improving the status of Catholicism in education fundamentally in comparison to the previous liberal system. This led socialist philosopher and later member of the Italian resistance, Alfredo Poggi, supported by Luigi Credaro, former radical minister of education, to take aim of the Jesuits. In an analysis of the history of the Italian Jesuit educational policies, they argued that the Jesuits were now obtaining what they had been asking for since the mid-nineteenth century.17 On a similar note, in the early 1930s, contributors to the journal Rivista rosminiana di filosofia e di cultura, founded in 1906, analyzing the relations of Manzoni (1785–1873), Rosmini (1797–1855) and the Italian Jesuits, saw the Jesuits as representatives of a line of penetration of the political life of the state that the church had practiced recently, but that went counter to Manzoni’s spirit of support of constitutionalism and democracy. More specifically, these liberal scholars suggested that Pirri in his accounts of the special congregation over Rosminian doctrine in 1854 had unduly exaggerated the Vatican’s criticism of Rosmini.18 Contemporaneously, in the 1930s, communist intellectual Antonio Gramsci (1891–1937) wrote in prison about Jesuit efforts to mobilize workers in the first decades of the twentieth century.19 He labeled the Society a “repressive force” and “enormous power” in his prison notebooks that would become highly influential when they were published after World War II.20
The Postwar Period
In the critical period of renewed nation building after the Second World War, secular and clericals in Italy sensed an urge to revisit the studies of Italian unification and the Risorgimento. Research into the history of the church and the Jesuits was revitalized, but scholarship continued to be polarized along very much the same ingrained trenches as before, although now scholars of socialist orientation took up a more defined position alongside the liberal and Catholic camps.
The works of Catholic historians were motivated by a need to revise liberal historiography that had depicted the clericals as unpatriotic during the Risorgimento. In 1948, Don Paolo Guerrini demonstrated to be well aware that his efforts were part of broader currents, attempting to place his work in the context of a larger upheaval in scholarship on the Risorgimento led among others by Alberto Ghisalberti. Guerrini argued that during the Risorgimento the Jesuits had been accused of being reactionaries by anti-clerical democrats, while in fact organizations affiliated to the Jesuits had acted patriotically. Moreover, the priest and historian from Brescia compared the anticlerical democrats of the Risorgimento to contemporary communist agitators, suggesting the motifs for denouncing the Jesuits had been opportunistic in both cases. Thereby, he repositioned the Catholics towards the center of Italian nation building.21
Other clerics and Catholic historians argued similarly that Jesuit influence had been positive for the fatherland and that opposition to liberal government during Italian unification had been justified by the anti-clerical politics of the Italian state.22 The Jesuit Carlo Piccirillo even came close to counting Carlo Maria Curci (1810–91), who had been dismissed from the Order for decades because of his too liberal views on Church-state relations, among the “martyrs” of the Risorgimento.23 In this way the actions of the Jesuits in the nineteenth century Risorgimento were reframed as having paved the way for and as culminating in post-war Italian Christian Democratic-dominated society.24
Historians of secular liberal and republican leanings continued to depict the Jesuits as the foremost opponents of the liberal and national movements in Italy.25 The young Giovanni Spadolini, republican, prominent historian of the Risorgimento and later prime minister of Italy, saw the Jesuits as the main representatives of intransigent opposition to liberalism after 1848, as an “anti-thesis” to liberal Catholicism and to its ideas of the modern state, and to some degree he seems to have seen the mass organization of Catholics by militant intransigents in the nineteenth century as a precondition for the influence of Catholicism in democracy in his own period.26
Under the fresh impression of the victory of the Christian Democrats over the communists in the watershed national elections of 1948, socialist and communist analysts of national identity formation began reading the agency of the Jesuits in a Marxist key. Class interests had united the bourgeoisie and the Jesuits and the church in an effort to conserve the social status quo, and the Jesuits had made use of the “specter of socialism” to scare the middle classes to this end. Thus, the Jesuits had used anti-socialism to counter liberalism and the lay state and contributed to marginalize socialism in Italy.27 In 1950, Franco Fergnani, anti-fascist and professor of philosophy at the University of Milan, republished Bertrando Spaventa’s Risorgimento polemics against the Jesuits. Fernani argued that Spaventa’s battle against reactionaries and the extreme edge of Catholicism, “Jesuitism,” continued in the 1950s, led no more by the liberal bourgeoisie, but by radically new anti-reactionary forces.28 Jesuit historians replied to such evaluations, by arguing that Jesuit opposition to socialism had not been merely negative. It had been accompanied by social thought that went counter to both socialism and liberalism and thereby conserved Catholic concepts of economy, work and organization anticipating the modern welfare state.29
Studies of fascism and the role of the Catholics in the Second World War were conspicuously absent in the works of these generations of historians. Mario Colpo, S.J. suggested that La Civiltà cattolica had maintained its independence during the recent “illiberal regime,” while his companion, Antonio Messineo, in two articles of a total of nineteen pages, dedicated to celebrating the one hundred year anniversary of La Civiltà cattolica, spent only two lines on the fascist period: “During the period between the two world wars, the journal devoted itself principally to political and social problems of Italy, especially after the rise of Fascism. The dangers inherent in totalitarianism necessitated extensive clarifications of the Catholic doctrine of personal rights.”30 Messineo, who otherwise cited his sources meticulously, did not refer to the articles he alluded to here, perhaps out of modesty. Much later he himself has been singled out as a voice critical of fascism within the clerical hierarchy.31 By contrast, Giorgio Candeloro, former member of the anti-fascist resistance and historian of Gramscian inspiration, argued that the Jesuits of La Civiltà cattolica, focusing on marginalizing the socialists, had favored a fascist victory in the elections in 1924, and saw this as an example of their “Jesuit mentality.”32
Meanwhile, in between the trenches analyses emerged by historians, whose views appear less polarized. Bruno Malinverni, ex-partisan, professor at the Catholic University of Milan and director of Catholic Action in Bergamo in the 1960s, criticized La Civiltà cattolica for having continued to let its approaches to the state and the social problem be guided by “an old problem,” that of the Roman question. 33 Walter Maturi, professor of the Risorgimento at the University of Turin, while characterizing Ilario Rinieri for being polemical and zelante and Pietro Pirri for being apologetic, praised these Jesuit historians for their application of critical methods and good research intuition. 34 And the young Francesco Traniello suggested that the intransigent tradition of the Jesuits of La Civiltà cattolica had undergone a “healthy” crisis around the time of World War I that had led ultimately to an “infinitely more open” Catholic culture after World War II.35
From the II Vatican Council to the Fall of the Christian Democrats
Following the social changes in Italy and Europe in the 1960s and the papacy of John XXIII (r.1958–63), interest in Italian unification ceased being the overriding catalyst for research into the history of the Jesuits. In line with the broader rise in social and cultural history, historical writings on the Italian Jesuits exploded into a much more varied landscape. Interest began to emerge in various social aspects of Jesuit life, including charity, economy, education and diffusion of ideas.36 Historians started to take a transnational perspective on the Italian context.37 Local histories began to mushroom.38 However, the cultural battlefields had not disappeared.
Already in the late 1960s, researchers pointed at a shift in the focus of the Italian Jesuits from domestic politics towards the third world.39 By the 1980s, scholars of Catholic orientation took it for granted that the Second Vatican Council could be regarded as a watershed.40 Giacomo Martina was seen as an exponent of a new “post-conciliar” and “post-piana” vision of the church as a pluralistic entity rather than a hierocentric block.41
The idea of the church as pluralistic seems to have fueled a series of studies by scholars identifying with the innovations of the Vatican Council into what was seen as pluralist tendencies of the church in the past. This led to revision both of modernist views and of the anti-modernism of the Jesuits. According to Lorenzo Bedeschi, the Jesuits had sometimes been judged too indiscriminately by contemporary modernists.42 “Victors” and “losers” in past struggles, thus, were revisited in a post-Vatican II historical lens. This is particularly evident in three cases. The one is Antonio Rosmini, the others two priests, who broke with the Jesuit Order due to their too critical views on temporal power, Carlo Passaglia (1812–87) and Carlo Curci. The new interest in Rosmini led to criticism of the Jesuits, who were considered to have been among his strongest opponents.43 Some scholars, however, distinguished between certain highly influential neo-Thomist Jesuits linked to La Civiltà cattolica, judged to have played a decisive role in the condemnation of Rosmini’s theses, and other sections of the Order, such as the leadership and the Collegio Romano who were not anti-Rosminians as such.44 Both Curci and Passaglia were read as symbols of hope for a different church that had existed long before Vatican II. And in the 1980s, when the Christian Democrats rule in Italy began to show signs of crisis, they were seen as important models for the contemporary Italian church.45
At the same time the modernists’ opponents, the “intransigents,” were revisited by scholars perceiving a change away from the intransigent model after Vatican II.46 Martina raised the question to which extent the Jesuits had pushed the popes towards this model. However, he argued, the Jesuits had been under attack from the state and needed to defend themselves. Moreover, the intransigent centralized church of Vatican Council I, had been necessary in order to reach Vatican II.47
The revival of neo-Thomism in the nineteenth century continued to be a point of dispute. Scholars, most prominently Luciano Malusa, argued that the reestablishment of neo-Thomism as the official church doctrine had been promoted by Jesuits in Rome as a cultural program in order to defend an intransigent anti-modern worldview, and that this cultural battle had helped the Catholics gaining influence in political life in the twentieth century.48 Researchers closer to the church strongly criticized this theory, suggesting that the actions of the Jesuits were justified by the attacks of the liberal state.49 Some expressed hopes that neo-Thomism, being a system well suited to combat disorientation, would see a new renaissance in the 1980s.50
The Second Vatican Council also left an immediate impact on the historical writings concerning the perception of other faiths. Observers started debating the Catholic attitudes to the Jewish question on the background of what they saw as a major breakthrough in relations to Judaism.51
After Vatican II and in view of the looming crisis of Christian Democratic dominance in Italian society, church-state relations were under continuous debate and evaluations of the effects of the Jesuits’ agency in line with previous cultural battles remained visible. As earlier, secular researchers argued that the agency of the Jesuits had been fundamentally anti-progressive. The policies of the Italian Jesuits in the nineteenth century and in the post-war period were seen as a “crusade” aimed at preventing any influence of the left and at preserving a “feudal” economic model.52 Drawing on Gramsci, literary critics restudied the work of Antonio Bresciani (1798–1862) in this sense and suggested that Manzoni had been seen as enemy at first and only later, in the 1890s, was construed as an allied in face of greater evils.53 According to Carlo Ginzburg, the Jesuits had attempted to infiltrate the state after 1948 in order to overtake power in Italian society. He and others focused in particular on the charismatic figure of Riccardo Lombardi (1908–79), “God’s microphone,” whose rhetoric Ginzburg compared to that of Mussolini.54 Catholic scholars agreed to attribute a leading role in the intransigent Catholic movement to the Jesuits and in particular to La Civiltà cattolica.55 But they judged the impact differently. The Jesuits had been patriots, working towards the removal of the temporal power of the church. Their policies had been conducive of liberty and democracy and had helped preparing post-war Christian democratic society.56
The continued polarization between historians aligned with the order and the church and other researchers is perhaps most evident in the emerging scholarship on fascism and the Holocaust. On the one side, De Rosa downplayed synergies between the regime and the Jesuits and the church.57 On the other, researchers criticized the Jesuits, especially La Civiltà cattolica, for having supported Franco, helped Mussolini reach power, and for having seen the regime as a platform for obtaining influence in Italian society or for having colluded with fascism.58 Scholars focused in particular on the figure of Pietro Tacchi Venturi (1861–1956), seen as an intermediary between the fascist government and the Vatican.59 According to Di Nolfo, La Civiltà cattolica continued to be alien to anti-fascism after WWII.60 Following growing public interest in the Holocaust and Christian-Jewish relations, historians mostly of non Catholic background began studying what they saw as diffusion of antisemitism by La Civiltà cattolica from the nineteenth century to World War II.61 Clerical researchers responded by arguing that too little attention was being paid to the anti-racism of the Jesuits and the persecution of the Jesuits by the Nazis.62
However, a new less polarized contemporary church historiography, dominated by scholars of Catholic cultural background without strict links to the Vatican, seemed to gain strength during the 1970s and 1980s. Roberto Sani among others analyzed the influence of the Jesuits on the church and political life in Italy. He argued that the Roman Jesuits had impeded any Christian Democratic rapprochement with the left and attempted to push the party towards the right wing of Italian politics. In the area of education the Jesuits had tried to retain control in society through an alternative schooling system until Vatican II.63 Others emphasized how the Jesuits’ struggle against communism had made them important promoters of Italy’s cooperation in Western alliances and the NATO.64
In Italy in the early 1990s, in the wage of the fall of the Berlin Wall and a major political corruption scandal, the established political parties collapsed. This gave place to a new parliamentary settlement, sometimes called the “Second Republic.” The disappearance of the Christian Democratic Party changed the ways in which the Italian Catholics were represented politically and the way the church interacted with the state. While before the Christian Democratic Party had been the main channel of influence, Catholic interest was now scattered over a variety of groups and parties. Culture and value politics, however, did not lose importance. In 1998, a clerical scholar insisted that historical studies of the Jesuits’ educational policies in the nineteenth century were relevant now in the “so-called second republic,” in view of the current debates over new balances between public and private schools.65
Old cultural wars over the influence of Catholicism in society continued, but the trenches and battles became less distinct and more sporadic. Similarly, the historiographical landscape continued to diversify. In this regard the period after 1990 displays the continuation of tendencies already present in the 1970s and 1980s. In an increasingly pluralist society, the outcomes of the Second Vatican Council continued to fuel research into the Jesuit order. For instance, scholars began to show interest in Jesuit attitudes to Islam.66 Historians continued to emphasize the role of the Jesuits in the establishment of an intransigent and centralized church in the one hundred years prior to the council.67 Some of these saw “Jesuitism” as the antithesis to “Rosminianism.”68 Others, closer to the church, attempted to discover nuances within the order and in the order’s policies.69 Martina distinguished between the views of Jesuit institutions, suggesting that the Jesuit Curia and the professors at the Collegio Romano or Gregorian University had been moderate compared to the more radical anti-modernists at La Civiltà cattolica.70 By contrast, La Civiltà cattolica’s historian, Giovanni Sale, argued that the important Jesuit journal had in fact shifted from an “intransigent” to a “transigent” position in the early twentieth century. Thereby it had struggled on two fronts, on one hand against the “modernists,” on the other against the “integralists.”71
As before, scholarship on neo-Thomism was fed by such debates. Some researchers supported Malusa’s thesis that the neo-scholastic revival had mainly been an intransigent political tool.72 Others refused the idea that neo-Thomism was retrograde, or proposed that a fertile usage of the Thomist tradition remained possible.73 Karl Neufeld emphasized that while systematic neo-Thomism had contributed to the modernist crisis by separating itself neatly from historical science, parts of the Jesuit order, professors at the Collegio Romano in particular, had supported an alternative theological model that was more open towards historical approaches.74
Debates over the role of the Jesuits in Italian unification continued, and, as earlier, the Society was more often than not depicted as a strong opponent of the liberal state.75 However, a new trend saw lay historians becoming increasingly interested in the role of the Jesuits in Italian nation building.76
Simultaneously, there has been an increase in studies of the Jesuits’ relations to fascism. Most studies by non clerical historians have stressed the convergence between the policies of the Jesuits, often exemplified by La Civiltà cattolica, and those of the fascist regime.77 For example, Gabriele Turi has suggested that Italian Jesuits, led by Tacchi Venturi and Enrico Rosa, exerted a strong influence on the Enciclopedia Treccani. The encyclopedia, directed by Giovanni Gentile, was one of the most prestigious cultural enterprises during fascism.78 These efforts have been accompanied by new studies on the Jesuits’ attitudes to antisemitism and the Holocaust. Some researchers have argued that Jesuits, in particular, Tacchi Venturi, Ledóchowski, and La Civiltà cattolica pushed not only the Vatican but Mussolini and even the Nazis to adopt antisemitic policies.79 This stands in contrast to interpretations by other historians of Catholic background.80
The old trenches, thus, have not entirely disappeared. The polarization of historiography on Jesuits in Italy reemerged in the reactions to the publication of Martina’s history in 2003.81La Civiltà cattolica’s Pietro Millefiorini wondered whether Martina’s attempt to produce a critical historical account of his own order was not “icy.”82 Apparently, the judgment among non-Jesuit scholars was more positive. Pietro Stella wrote that some had seen Martina as a “white elephant,” in the sense of being a “liberal Catholic historian,” in the Gregoriana.83
While old divisions have remained alive, thus, in the landscape of historiography on Jesuits in Italy, the general picture in the latest decades is one of ever increasing diversification. Many areas, some of which were neglected in the past, have received new attention. Studies of cultural history have increased—in particular of Jesuit education, literature and libraries.84 Interest in the controversial figure of Father Lombardi has stimulated research of the involvement of Jesuits in mass media.85 Another field of increased research is local history.86 In other areas innovation is going more slowly. There are still only few studies of social, economic and scientific aspects of the history of the Jesuits in Italy after the restoration.87 This counts as well for Jesuit spirituality and theological movements such as that of Gallarate.88 Finally, only little research has been done so far on international aspects such as colonialism and missions, Europeanization, the cold war and peace movements.89
To conclude, the highly polarized historiography on Jesuits in Italy bears the scars of the past. But as far as it is possible to judge within the chaos of contemporary publications, the scars seem to undergo a process of effacement. A possible symbol of this is the emergence of collective efforts by lay and Jesuit historians to engage in scientific historical work together.90
^ Back to text1. Giuseppe Battelli, “La recente storiografia sulla chiesa in Italia nell’età contemporanea,” Rivista di Storia della Chiesa in Italia 2007, no. 2, 463–500; Saverio Xeres, “Storiografia (età contemporanea) e la Chiesa in Italia,” Dizionario Storico Tematico, La Chiesa in Italia Vol. II – Dopo l’Unità Nazionale (Rome: Associazione Italiana dei Professori di Storia della Chiesa, 2015), http://www.storiadellachiesa.it/glossary/storiografia-eta-contemporanea-e-la-chiesa-in-italia/.
^ Back to text4. Ernest Gryzanovski, “The Regeneration of Italy,” The North American Review 113, no. 233 (October, 1871): 274–321; Giacomo Barzellotti, “Philosophy in Italy,” Mind 3, no. 12 (October, 1878): 505–38; Francesco Scaduto, Stato e Chiesa nelle Due Sicilie (Palermo: Amenta, 1887), 729–47; Raffaele Mariano, “Italy and the Papacy,” International Journal of Ethics 4, no. 2 (January, 1894): 206–29.
^ Back to text5. Gaetano Capasso, “Il collegio dei nobili di Parma: Memorie storiche pubblicate nel terzo centenario dalla sua fondazione (28 ottobre 1901),” Archivio storico per le provincie parmensi, 2 series, 1 (1901): 1–288; Stefano Fermi, “Per la storia del movimento antigesuitico in Piacenza,” Bollettino storico piacentino 12 (1917): 13–20.
^ Back to text7. Michele Volpe S.I, “A proposito di un centenario (1804–1904),” Apostolato della preghiera 4, no. 2 (1904): 9–45; Ilario Rinieri S.I.,“Il primo centenario anniversario della ristabilita Compagnia di Gesù nel Regno di Napoli,” Apostolato della preghiera 4, no. 2 (1904): 64–71.
^ Back to text9. Amato Masnovo, “Il prof. Giovanni Gentile e il tomismo italiano dal 1850 al 1900,” Rivista di filosofia neo–scolastica 4, no. 1 (1912): 115–25, 4; no. 2 (1912): 260–69; 4, no. 5 (1912): 646– 57.
^ Back to text10. Bertrando Spaventa, La politica dei gesuiti nel secolo XVI e nel XIX: Polemica con La Civiltà Cattolica (1854–55) a cura di Giovanni Gentile (Milan: Albrighi, 1911); Giuseppe Saitta, Le origini del neo-tomismo nel secolo XIX, con prefazione di Giovanni Gentile (Bari: Laterza, 1912).
^ Back to text11. Pietro Galletti S.I., Memorie storiche intorno al P. Luigi Ricasoli e alla Compagnia di Gesù in Toscana (Prato: Giachetti, 1901); Gaetano Filiti, S.I., La Compagnia di Gesù ristabilita in Sicilia nel 1805: Ricordo storico (Palermo: Bondi, 1905); Pietro Galletti S.I., Memorie storiche intorno alla provincia romana della Compagnia di Gesù dall'anno 1814 all'anno 1914: I. (1814–1848) (Prato: Giachetti, 1914); Alessandro Monti S.I., La Compagnia di Gesù nel territorio della provincia torinese (Chieri: M. Ghirardi, 1914–20).
^ Back to text12. Alessio Narbone S.I., Annali siculi della Compagnia di Gesù, dall'anno 1805 al 1895: Pubblicati e continuati sino a giorni nostri dal P. Gaetano Filiti D.M.C. (Palermo: G. Bondi, 1906–8); Michele Volpe S.I., I gesuiti nel Napoletano: Note ed appunti di storia contemporanea da documenti inediti e con larghe illustrazioni, 1814–1914. I. Dal 1814 al 1829. II. Dal 1830 al 1836. III. Dal 1837 al 1847 (Naples: M. D’Auria, 1914–15).
^ Back to text14. E.g. Alessandro Monti, “Scuole e maestri di Cuneo antica,” “Una missione dei gesuiti all'ospedale di S. Croce in Cuneo,” Comunicazioni della Società per gli studi storici, archeologici ed artistici per la provincia di Cuneo 2, no. 1 (1930): 39–115; no. 2 (1930): 95–118.
^ Back to text15. E.g. Pietro Pirri, “L’Università Gregoriana: Contributo storico in commemorazione di un giubileo,” La Civiltà cattolica (1924): 4, 109–121, 319–34; La Civiltà cattolica (1925): 1, 219–32; Pietro Pirri, “Il P. Taparelli d'Azeglio e il rinnovamento della Scolastica al Collegio Romano, 1825–1829,” La Civiltà cattolica (1927):, 1, 107–21; 399–409, Pietro Pirri, “Intorno alle origini del rinnovamento tomista in Italia. Il P. Taparelli e il P. Sordi,” La Civiltà cattolica (1928): 4, 215–29, 396–411; Pietro Pirri, “La rinascita del tomismo a Napoli nel 1830: I. I collaboratori del P. Taparelli,” La Civiltà cattolica (1929): 1, 229–44; “II. Il peripato in azione,” La Civiltà cattolica (1929): 1, 422–33; “III. Epilogo,” La Civiltà cattolica (1929): 2, 31–42; Pietro Pirri, P. Giovanni Roothaan, 21 generale della Compagnia di Gesù (Isola del Liri: Soc. tip. A. Macione & Pisani, 1930).
^ Back to text16. Paolo Dezza, I neotomisti italiani del XIX secolo: La filosofia teoretica (Milan: Fratelli Bocca, 1942); Ramòn Ceñal, “Dezza, Paolo, S.J., I neotomisti italiani del XIX secolo: La filosofia teoretica,” Rivista di filosofía 2, no. 5 (1943): 405–6.
^ Back to text18. Camillo Viglino, “Rosmini e i gesuiti in un libro sul Manzoni,” Rivista rosminiana di filosofia e di cultura 27 (1933): 224–32; Piero Fossi, La conversione di Alessandro Manzoni (Bari: Laterza, 1933); Pietro Pirri, P. Giovanni Roothaan.
^ Back to text19. Antonio Gramsci, Prison Notebooks, 3 vols. (New York: Columbia University Press, 1992–2007), 2:691; Direzione dei Ritiri Operai, Come il popolo ritorna a Dio, 1909–1929: L’Opera dei Ritiri e le Leghe di Perseveranza in Roma in 20 anni di vita (Rome: Direzione dei Ritiri Operai, 1929); Direzione generale dell’Opera dei ritiri spirituali e Leghe di perseveranza, Christus vincit, Christus regnat, Christus imperat. 1909–1934: 25 anni per il trionfo di Gesù Cristo nel cuore del popolo (Rome: Direzione generale dell’Opera dei ritiri spirituali e Leghe di perseveranza, 1936).
^ Back to text21. Paolo Guerrini, “La diocesi di Brescia nella storia del Risorgimento nazionale: II – Marzo 1848: La rivoluzione e i gesuiti,” Memorie storiche della diocesi di Brescia 15, no. 2 (1948): 25–36.
^ Back to text22. Giuseppe Cultrera, “I gesuiti a Palermo nel 1848,” in Atti del Congresso di studi storici del '48 siciliano (Palermo: Istituto per la storia del risorgimento italiano, 1950), 185–99; Dora Guerrieri, “The Attitude of the Civiltà cattolica on the Italian Question, 1866–1870,” The Catholic Historical Review 34. no. 1 (July, 1948): 154–74; Antonio Messineo, “‘Civiltà cattolica’ Centenary,” American Ecclesiastical Review 124 (1951): 417–25; 125 (1951): 19–28.
^ Back to text23. Ciro Piccirillo, “Le “idée nuove” del padre Curci sulla questione romana,” in Chiesa e stato nell'Ottocento: Miscellanea in onore di Pietro Pirri, ed. Roger Aubert, Alberto Maria Ghisalberti, Ettore Passerin D’Entrèves (Padua: Antenore, 1962), 607–57.
^ Back to text24. A. Comelli (attributed to Mario Colpo, S.J. by László Polgár, Bibliographie sur l’histoire de la Compagnie de Jésus 1901–1980, II, Les Pays, Europe [Rome: Institutum Historicum S.I., 1983], 363), “Cent’anni della ‘Civiltà cattolica’,” Vita e pensiero 32 (1949): 636–43.
^ Back to text25. Alvaro Dioscoridi, “La rivoluzione italiana e ‘La Civiltà cattolica,’” Rassegna storica del Risorgimento 42 (1955): 258–66, previously published in Atti del XXXI Congresso di Storia del Risorgimento italiano (Mantua: Istituto Storia Risorgimento Italiano, 1952), 94–102; Raffaele Fasanari, “Un’inchiesta di Carlo Montanari sui gesuiti di Verona per incarico di Vincenzo Gioberti,” Rassegna storica del Risorgimento 43 (1956): 333–38; Olga Majolo Molinari, “Civiltà (La) cattolica: Pubblicazione periodica per tutta l’Italia,” in La stampa periodica romana dell’Ottocento, I., ed. Olga Majolo Molinari (Rome: Istituto di studi romani, 1963), 220–22.
^ Back to text27. Luigi Dal Pane, “Il socialismo e le questioni sociali nella prima annata della ‘Civiltà cattolica,’” in Studi in onore di G. Luzzatto, vol. 3 (Milan: A. Giuffrè, 1950), 126–48; Arminio Savioli, “Pio IX e i gesuiti contro l’Unità d’Italia,” Rinascita 17 (1960): 450–54.
^ Back to text30. Comelli [attributed to Mario Colpo, S.J.], “Cent’anni della ‘Civiltà cattolica’”; Antonio Messineo, “Civiltà cattolica centenary,” American Ecclesiastical Review 124 (1951): 417–25; 125 (1951): 19–28.
^ Back to text35. Francesco Traniello, “Guerra, stato, nazione negli scritti di padre Rosa apparsi sulla ‘Civiltà Cattolica’ (1914–1918),” in Benedetto XV: I cattolici e la prima guerra mondiale; Atti del Convegno di studio tenuto a Spoleto nei giorni 7–8–9 settembre 1962, ed. Giuseppe Rossini (Rome: Edizioni Cinque Lune, 1963), 661–77.
^ Back to text36. Mario Colpo, S.J., “De Rosa, Gabriele: I gesuiti in Sicilia e la rivoluzione del ’48,” Archivum historicum Societatis Iesu 33 (January 1, 1964): 355–57; Litterio Villari, “L’azienda gesuitica di Sicilia: Vicende patrimoniali del collegio di Piazza Armerina (sec. xvii–xix),” Archivio storico messinese 31 (1980): 289–306; Fulvio Salimbeni, “Il romanzo d’appendice nella Civiltà cattolica,” in Il movimento cattolico italiano nell’ultimo decennio dell’Ottocento (Lodi: Centro di cultura Paolo VI, 1981), 143–65; Lia De Finis, Dai maestri di grammatica al ginnasio-liceo di Via S. Trinità di Trento (Trento: Società di studi trentini di scienze storiche, 1987); Giuseppe Cavalleri, ed., Un secolo di storia dell’Istituto Cesare Arici di Brescia (Brescia: Cedoc, 1990).
^ Back to text37. Ennio Di Nolfo, “‘La Civiltà cattolica’ e le scelte di fondo della politica estera italiana nel secondo dopoguerra,” Storia e politica 10 (1971): 187–239; Pier Giorgio Zunino, “Chiesa e stato nei rapporti tra ‘Civiltà cattolica’ e Partito popolare alla luce di nuovi documenti,” Rivista di storia e letteratura religiosa 9 (1973): 235–76.
^ Back to text38. Romolo Comandini, “Luigi Carlo Farini e l'allontanamento dei gesuiti dalla direzione del seminario di Bertinoro,” Critica storica 8 (1969): 633–52; Antonio Fappani, “Giovanni Battista Montini e la Congregazione Mariana del Collegio Cesare Arici di Brescia,” Brixia sacra 5 (1970): 49–53; Luciano Malusa, “F. Ottonello, Cultura filosofica nella stampa periodica dell’Italia meridionale nella prima metà dell’Ottocento, Tilgher, Genova, 1985,” L’Aevum 61, no. 3 (1987): 766–71.
^ Back to text41. Annibale Zambarbieri, “Una nuova storia della chiesa nell’età moderna e contemporanea: L’opera di Padre Giacomo Martina S.J.,” Ricerche di storia sociale e religiosa 11 (1982): 45–53; Miquel Batllori, S.J., “La Compañía de Jesús entre 1833 y 1945,” Archivum historicum Societatis Iesu 55 (1986): 287–310.
^ Back to text42. Lorenzo Bedeschi, La Curia romana durante la crisi modernista: Episodi e metodi di governo (Parma: U. Guanda Editore, 1968); Paul Droulers, “Luigi Mezzadri e Franco Molinari, Il Modernismo a Piacenza (Monografie del Collegio Alberoni, 40), Piacenza, Edizioni T.E.P., 1981,” Archivum historiae pontificiae 20 (1982): 441–42.
^ Back to text43. Giacomo Martina, “La censura romana del 1848 alle opere di Rosmini,” Rivista rosminiana 62 (1968): 384–409; 63 (1969): 24–49; Pietro Zovatto, “Rosminianismo e tomismo: Un episodio sconosciuto della celebre controversia,” Aquinas 15 (1972): 98–126; Bruno Perazzoli, “Serafino Sordi,” Rivista rosminiana di filosofia e di cultura 81 (1987): 293–306.
^ Back to text45. Agostino Giovagnoli, Dalla teologia alla politica: L’itinerario di Carlo Passaglia negli anni di Pio IX e Cavour (Brescia: Morcelliana, 1984); Giuseppe Rambaldi, S.J., “I due tempi della riconciliazione con la Chiesa di Carlo Passaglia: Con documenti inediti,” Archivum historicum Societatis Iesu 55 (1986): 87–128; Giandomenico Mucci, Carlo Maria Curci: Il fondatore della “Civiltà cattolica” (Rome: Studium, 1988); Batllori, “La Compañía de Jesús entre 1833 y 1945”; Giuseppe Tuninetti, “Lettere inedite sul ‘Caso Passaglia,’” in Giuseppe Accornero, E. Walter Crivellin, Bartolo Gariglio, Giuseppe Tuninetti, and Alessandro Zussini, eds., Anticlericalismo, pacifismo: Cultura cattolica nella pubblicistica tra i due secoli (Turin: Centro studi sul giornalismo piemontese Carlo Trabucco, 1984), 83–92.
^ Back to text46. Émile Poulat, “La dernière bataille du pontificat de Pie X,” Rivista di storia della Chiesa in Italia 25 (1971): 83–107; Riccardo Albani, “La ‘Civiltà cattolica’ dal 1850 al 1870. I: Premessa: Le correnti antigesuitiche,” Quaderni della rivista trimestrale 64–66 (1980–1): 157–178.
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^ Back to text48. Antonio Cestaro, “Roma capitale ne ‘La Civiltà cattolica,’” in Un secolo da Porta Pia (Naples: Guida, 1970), 219–47; Girolamo De Liguori, “Leopardi e i gesuiti (1878–1898): Appunti per la storia della censura leopardiana,” Rassegna della letteratura italiana 85 (1981): 170–89; Luciano Malusa, “Riflessioni sulla restaurazione tomista in Italia: La presenza del concetto di modernità nelle concezioni storiografiche dei neotomisti,” in Modernità: Storia e valore di un’idea; Contributi al XXXVI Convegno del Centro di studi filosofici di Gallarate 23–25–25 aprile 1981 (Brescia: Morcelliana, 1982), 98–120; Malusa, Neotomismo e intransigentismo cattolico: Il contributo di Giovanni Maria Cornoldi per la rinascita del tomismo (Milan: Istituto Propaganda Libraria, 1986); Malusa, Neotomismo e intransigentismo cattolico: Testi e documenti per un bilancio del neotomismo; Gli scritti inediti di Giovanni Maria Cornoldi (Milan: Istituto Propaganda Libraria, 1989); Malusa, L’Idea di tradizione nazionale nella storiografia filosofica italiana dell’Ottocento (Genoa: Tilgher–Genova, 1989); Emerich Coreth, Walter M. Neidl, and Georg Pfligersdorffer, eds., Christliche Philosophie im katholischen Denken des 19. und 20. Jahrhunderts, vol. 2: Rückgriff auf scholastisches Erbe (Graz: Styria, 1988); Heinrich M. Schmidinger, “I centri tomisti a Roma, Napoli, Perugia, ecc.: S. Sordi, D. Sordi, L. Taparelli D’Azeglio, M. Liberatore, C. M. Curci, G. M. Cornoldi e altri,” Rivista di filosofia neo-scolastica 82, nos. 2/3 (1990): 412–35.
^ Back to text51. Charlotte Klein, “In the mirror of Civiltà cattolica: Vatican View of Jewry, 1939–1962, Christian Attitudes on Jews 43 (1975): 12–16; Gadi Luzzatto, “Aspetti di antisemitismo nella ‘Civiltà cattolica’ dal 1881 al 1903,” Bailamme 1, no. 2 (1987): 125–38.
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^ Back to text53. Giuseppina Bolletta, “Martirio e conversione: Due temi nell’Amico della gioventù e nei romanzi di Padre Bresciani,” Rivista di storia e letteratura religiosa 16 (1980): 381–417; Rinaldo Rinaldi, “L’estrema civiltà di Padre Bresciani. Passeggiate critiche,” Critica letteraria 11 (1983): 27–61; Alessandra Di Ricco, “Padre Bresciani: Populismo e reazione,” Studi storici 22, no. 4 (1981): 833–60; Alessandra Di Ricco, “Il Manzoni nei giudizi della ‘Civiltà cattolica,’” Rivista di letteratura italiana 1 (1983): 271–310.
^ Back to text54. Carlo Ginzburg, “Folklore, magia, religione,” in Storia d’Italia, vol. 1: I caratteri originali, ed. Ruggero Romani and Corrado Vivanti (Turin: Einaudi, 1972), 603–76; Luciano Trincia, “La Civiltà cattolica”, la democrazia ‘naturaliter christiana’ e la paura del comunismo (1943–1948),” Studi storici 28, no. 2 (1987): 505–29.
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