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Vatican II: A Very Short Introduction

Shaun Blanchard and Stephen Bullivant

23 March 2023

ISBN: 9780198864813

176 pages
Paperback
174x111mm

Very Short Introductions

Price: £8.99

This Very Short Introduction explores the backstory, event, and reception of the Second Vatican Council, or Vatican II, in light of the wider history of the Catholic Church and places it in the exciting and tumultuous context of the 1960s.

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This Very Short Introduction explores the backstory, event, and reception of the Second Vatican Council, or Vatican II, in light of the wider history of the Catholic Church and places it in the exciting and tumultuous context of the 1960s.

  • A fresh account of the event of Vatican II, the documents it produced, and its roots and reception
  • Pays substantial attention to the diversity of thought and background at the Council
  • Rooted in recent scholarship on the Council, this is an accessible introduction to Vatican II that is perfect for an undergraduate or graduate classroom
  • Part of the Very Short Introductions series - over ten million copies sold worldwide

About the Author(s)

Shaun Blanchard, Senior Research Fellow, National Institute for Newman Studies, and Stephen Bullivant, Professor of Theology and the Sociology of Religion, St Mary's University, UK

Shaun Blanchard is Senior Research Fellow at the National Institute for Newman Studies. A graduate of North Carolina, Oxford, and Marquette, Shaun writes on a variety of topics in early modern and modern Catholicism. He is the author of The Synod of Pistoia and Vatican II (OUP, 2020) and, with Ulrich Lehner, co-edited The Catholic Enlightenment: A Global Anthology (2021). Forthcoming works include a monograph on ecclesiology in the late eighteenth-century English-speaking world, an anthology of translated Jansenist sources (co-edited with Richard Yoder), and book chapters on the British and Irish Catholic Enlightenment and the popes and the Enlightenment.

Stephen Bullivant is Professor of Theology and the Sociology of Religion, and Director of the Benedict XVI Centre for Religion and Society. He holds doctorates in Theology (Oxford, 2009) and Sociology (Warwick, 2019). He joined St Mary's in 2009, having previously held posts at Heythrop College, London, and Wolfson College, Oxford. Professor Bullivant has also held Visiting fellowship at the Institute for Social Change (University of Manchester), Blackfriars Hall (University of Oxford), and the Institute for Advanced Studies (University College London). Professor Bullivant has published ten books, including: Mass Exodus: Catholic Disaffiliation in Britain and America since Vatican II (OUP, 2019), Why Catholics Leave, What They Miss, and How They Might Return (2019; with C. Knowles, H. Vaughan-Spruce, and B. Durcan), The Oxford Dictionary of Atheism (OUP, 2016; with L. Lee), and The Trinity: How Not to Be a Heretic (2015).

Table of Contents

    Introduction
    1:Before the Council: roots of reform
    2:The event of the Council: what happened at Vatican II?
    3:Liturgy
    4:Dei Verbum and divine revelation
    5:Ecclesiology: the nature of the Church
    6:Church and world
    7:Conciliar 'hermeneutics': making sense of the debates over Vatican II
    Bibliography
    Further reading

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