Benedict XVI A life. Volume I, Youth in Nazi Germany to the Second Vatican Council, 1927-1965 Volume I, Youth in Nazi Germany to the Second Vatican Council, 1927-1965 /

Peter Seewald

Book - 2020

Based on countless hours of interviews in Rome with Pope Benedict XVI himself, this first volume of an authoritative biography follows the early life of the future Pope, from his days growing up in Germany and his conscription into the Hitler Youth during World War II to his career as an academic theologian and eventual Archbishop of Munich.

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282.092/Benedict
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Location Call Number   Status
2nd Floor 282.092/Benedict Due Jun 1, 2022
Subjects
Genres
Biography
Biographies
Published
London ; New York : Bloomsbury Continuum 2020.
Language
English
German
Item Description
"First published in 2020 in Germany as Benedikt XVI: ein leben by Droemer Verlag"--Title page verso.
Physical Description
xi, 500 pages, 16 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 24 cm
Bibliography
Includes bibliographical references (pages 465-489) and index.
ISBN
9781472979193
1472979192
9781472979186
1472979184
Main Author
Peter Seewald (author)
Other Authors
Dinah Livingstone (translator)
  • Part one: The boy. Easter Saturday ; The impediment ; The dreamland ; 1933; "Holy year" ; The 'German Christians' ; With burning concern ; The calm before the storm ; The seminary ; War ; Resistance ; The end
  • Part two. The master student. Zero hour ; The scholars' mountain ; Guilt and atonement ; Upheaval in thinking ; The glass bead game ; Augustine ; Storm and stress ; The key reading ; The major orders ; The curate ; The examination ; The abyss ; The new heathens and the Church
  • Part three: The council. A star is born ; The network ; Council ; The battle begins ; The Genoa speech ; The spin doctor ; The world on the brink ; Seven days that changed the Catholic Church for ever ; German wave ; Power sources ; In the school of the Holy Spirit ; The legacy.
Review by Library Journal Reviews

Journalist Seewald writes the first in a two-volume biography of Joseph Ratzinger (b. 1927), detailing his life from birth through his participation in the Second Vatican Council. The author artfully weaves together politics, church history, philosophy, and theology to show how these influenced and shaped the man who would become Pope Benedict XVI. This creates an engaging portrait that engrosses the reader in the subject. No detail of Pope Benedict XVI's life or relevant influences is left out of this thorough biography, including details on his family history as well as discussions of the people, works, and events that influenced him. For example, the author spends several paragraphs describing the life and work of St. Augustine of Hippo. Though this kind of information may be helpful for many readers, it is perhaps not necessary to include in a work as large as this one, which is more likely to appeal to researchers and subject experts than the casual reader. While the book does not shy away from including details on Ratzinger's personal and professional struggles, the overall tone of the work and treatment of the subject is slightly more positive than objective. VERDICT A well-suited biography for an academic or special collection.—Sarah Mazur, Noel Memorial Lib., LA Copyright 2020 Library Journal.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

This stimulating yet flawed first volume of German journalist Seewald's duology, his English-language debut, takes the reader through the first four decades of the life of Pope Benedict XVI, Joseph Ratzinger, including his youth and education under the Nazi regime. Seewald bases his account on interviews with Ratzinger, members of his family, and "one hundred contemporary witnesses." The early chapters describing Ratzinger's childhood, including his father's career as a high-ranking policeman and his mother's work in the family's bakery and sometimes as a house servant, are the most successful. Seewald emphasizes Ratzinger as a studious youth—nearly monastic from a very young age—and discusses at length his reading of St. Augustine and Herman Hesse. Unfortunately, those looking for insights into Ratzinger's relationship with the Nazi state or his thoughts on the actions of the Catholic Church during the rise of Hitler will be disappointed. Seewald avoids these topics and only notes that Ratzinger joined the Hitler Youth when membership was made compulsory by state law. While Catholic readers will enjoy the thorough investigation of Ratzinger's intellectual development, Seewald fails to place the youth of Pope Benedict XVI in full context. (Nov.) Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

Based on countless hours of interviews in Rome with Pope Benedict XVI himself, this first volume of an authoritative biography follows the early life of the future Pope, from his days growing up in Germany and his conscription into the Hitler Youth during World War II to his career as an academic theologian and eventual Archbishop of Munich.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Covering 1927 to 1965 and featuring a black-and-white photograph insert, an in-depth portrait of the controversial former pope draws on first-person interviews to include discussions of his youth in Germany and rise through the Catholic Church.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

The long-awaited and authoritative biography of Pope Benedict XVI, a giant of the Catholic Church.

Review by Publisher Summary 4

The long-awaited and authoritative biography of Pope Benedict XVI, a giant of the Catholic Church. Benedict XVI: Volume One offers insight into the young life and rise through the Church's ranks of a man who would become a hero and a lightning rod for Catholics the world over. Based on countless hours of interviews in Rome with Benedict himself, this much-anticipated two-volume biography is the definitive record of the life of Joseph Ratzinger and the legacy of Pope Benedict XVI.Volume I follows the early life of the future Pope, from his days growing up in Germany and his conscription into the Hitler Youth during World War II to his career as an academic theologian and eventual Archbishop of Munich. Volume II, to be published in 2021, will cover his move to Rome under Pope John Paul II, his ascension to the papacy, and his controversial retirement and news-making statements under his successor, Pope Francis I.This necessary companion to Benedict's own memoir, Last Testament, is the fullest account to date of the life of a radical Catholic leader who has continued to make news while cloistered in retirement in the Vatican gardens.