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A conservative at heart?
The Political and Social Thought of John Henry Newman
by Stephen Kelly
Blessed John Henry Newman's literary output was enormous. As the author explains, Newman published over forty books, his 20,000 letters and diaries have been gathered into thirty-two published volumes, and there remain some 2,400+ unpublished items from his time in Dublin. Ample material the observer might think, to compile a definitive view of every aspect of Newman's thought. Not so, it seems, in regard to his political and social ideas and allegiances. Kelly has done Newman scholarship a good service in trying to reduce this material to some sort of order, and his chapters on some of the great issues of the day: Irish nationalism, church-state relations, the constitution for example, help to put Newman's thought into context. But the man himself, in these areas in particular, still seems to elude us.
Reviewer: Ian Gibbs (17/12/12)