"A cracking good story with a wonderful cast of rogues, ruffians and some remarkably holy and sensible people."       --Los Angeles Times Book Review

Before the potato famine ravaged Ireland in the 1840s, the Roman Catholic Church was barely a thread in the American cloth. Twenty years later, New York City was home to more Irish Catholics than Dublin. Today, the United States boasts some sixty million members of the Catholic Church, which has become one of this country's most influential cultural forces.

In American Catholic: The Saints and Sinners Who Built America's Most Powerful Church, Charles R. Morris recounts the rich story of the rise of the Catholic Church in America, bringing to life the personalities that transformed an urban Irish subculture into a dominant presence nationwide. Here are the stories of rogues and ruffians, heroes and martyrs--from Dorothy Day, a convert from Greenwich Village Marxism who opened shelters for thousands, to Cardinal William O'Connell, who ran the Church in Boston from a Renaissance palazzo, complete with golf course. Morris also reveals the Church's continuing struggle to come to terms with secular, pluralist America and the theological, sexual, authority, and gender issues that keep tearing it apart. As comprehensive as it is provocative, American Catholic is a tour de force, a fascinating cultural history that will engage and inform both Catholics and non-Catholics alike.

"The best one-volume history of the last hundred years of American Catholicism that it has ever been my pleasure to read.  What's appealing in this remarkable book is its delicate sense of balance and its soundly grounded judgments." --Andrew Greeley


From the Trade Paperback edition.
This general Aryan superiority is indicative of a highly active and capable intellect, even though no one mind exercised a controlling influence. The general mentality of the race, the gross sum of Aryan thought and judgment, must have guided the course of Aryan evolution and kept our forefathers from those side-pits of stagnation into which all their competitors fell. During its primitive era the Aryan race moved steadily forward unto a well-devised system of organization which formed the basis of the great development of modern times.-from "The Age of Philosophy"What began in the late 19th century as a startlingly inept work of wishful thinking, outrageous conjecture, and bald racism masquerading as scholarship transformed itself, in the late 20th century, into a foundational work of neo-Nazi philosophy. Positing an heretofore-and subsequently-entirely unknown culture of Indo-Europeans as the standard bearers of all human progress and initiative, this 1888 work strings together a portrait of the "Aryan race" from carefully chosen scraps of religious, political, and social systems from across the Old World into a house of historical cards.Useless as a guide to human cultural origins, The Aryan Race is nevertheless essential reading for anyone hoping to understand the modern subculture of white supremacists, and how they come by their extreme doctrines.CHARLES MORRIS (1833-1922) also wrote A Manual of Classical Literature, Aryan Sun-Myths: The Origin of Religion, Heroes of Discovery in America, and The San Francisco Calamity.
It is the story of a hundred years that we propose to give; the record of the noblest and most marvelous century in the annals of mankind. Standing here, at the dawn of the Twentieth Century, as at the summit of a lofty peak of time, we may gaze far backward over the road we have traversed, losing sight of its minor incidents, but seeing its great events loom up in startling prominence before our eyes; heedless of its thronging millions, but proud of those mighty men who have made the history of the age and rise like giants above the common throng. History is made up of the deeds of great men and the movements of grand events, and there is no better or clearer way to tell the marvelous story of the Nineteenth Century than to put upon record the deeds of its heroes and to describe the events and achievements in which reside the true history of the age.

First of all, in this review, it is important to show in what the greatness of the century consists, to contrast its beginning and its ending, and point out the stages of the magnificent progress it has made. It is one thing to declare that the Nineteenth has been the greatest and most glorious of the centuries; it is another and more arduous task to trace the development of this greatness and the culmination of this career of glory. This it is that we shall endeavor to do in the pages of this work. All of us have lived in the century here described, many of us through a great part of it, some of us, possibly, through the whole of it. It is in the fullest sense our own century, one of which we have a just right to feel proud, and in whose career all of us must take a deep and vital interest.
Charles R. Morris's The Trillion Dollar Meltdown (2008) was the first book to warn of the impending financial crash in all its horrific scale and speed. Now, with Comeback, Morris reveals that the United States is on the brink of a strong recovery that could last for twenty years or more. The great economic boom times in American history have come because of fortuitous discoveries. Natural resources (coal first, then oil) fueled vast economic and industrial expansions, which in turn helped create and supply new markets. The last genuine economic game changer was the technology boom of the 1990s, which gave the U.S. a global competitive advantage for a while based on electronics and silicon. One of the first writers and analysts in the U.S. to predict that the tech boom would lead to a period of sustained economic growth was Charles Morris. In defiance of the recessionary times (in 1990), he saw the coming boom. Now, in 2013, he sees the threshold of another. This time the gift is natural gas. The amount and distribution of gas in American shale is so vast that it has the potential to transform the manufacturing economy, creating jobs across the country, and requiring a new infrastructure that will benefit the nation as a whole. Because of fracking, jobs that once would have been outsourced abroad will return home, America can become a net exporter of energy, and cheap energy will provide the opportunity for innovation and competition. In light of this new opportunity, and other complementary developments Morris explores in this book, the U.S. ought to be approaching the future with a robust self-confidence it has not experienced in a while. But we could fumble it away. The gold-rush style of shale boom companies does not make them good neighbors. A counter-reaction could put their industry, and the new era of national prosperity, at risk. We also have a political system that has the capacity to spoil the benefits of this huge boon. If the wealth locked in the continental shelf is not shared for the general economic good, but is instead exploited in short-term profiteering, then many of the opportunities that exist will be choked off by a few very rich corporations. Managing the great bonus of the vast store of cheap energy is going to become a defining political challenge in the years ahead. At the threshold of a thrilling opportunity, Morris is a brilliantly perceptive guide.
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