Academic journal article The Catholic Historical Review

Remembering Belloc

Academic journal article The Catholic Historical Review

Remembering Belloc

Article excerpt

Remembering Belloc. By James V. Schall, S.J. (South Bend, IN: St. Augustine's Press. 2013. Pp. xiv, 178. $22.00. ISBN 978-1-58731-703-3.)

Although readers of The Catholic Historical Review will need no introduction to Hilaire Belloc, the subject of this new volume by the irrepressible James V. Schall, S.J., it will be well to at least remind ourselves of why Belloc is worth remembering.

Bom twelve miles from Paris at La Celle Saint Cloud on July 27,1870, Belloc's birth coincided with the outbreak of the Franco-Prussian war. The family home was evacuated a few weeks later as the Bellocs fled to Paris en route to England, escaping the advancing Prussian army. Educated in the benevolent shadow of the aging Cardinal John Henry Newman at the Oratory School in Birmingham and at Balliol College, Oxford, from which he graduated with a First Class Honours degree in History, Belloc would become one of the most prolific, versatile, and controversial authors of the twentieth century. Less known today than his talents merit, his influence, considerable in his own day, seems to have waned. There is, however, some sign of a renewal of interest in his life and work, due in part to his association with G. K. Chesterton, whose own star appears to be very much in the ascendant.

Considering the unjustified neglect of Belloc and the more recent renewal of interest, Schall's book that remembers the man and his genius is most welcome. It is, however, important to recognize what this book is not. It is not a definitive study of Belloc's legacy in any of the many areas in which he excelled. Those seeking an in-depth study of his work as an historian will be disappointed, as will those seeking definitive discussions of his brief but explosive political career, or his importance as a poet or as a Catholic apologist. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.