Daniela Saresella, Catholics and Communists in Twentieth-Century Italy


Daniela Saresella

Catholics and Communists in Twentieth-Century Italy

Between Conflict and Dialogue

(Bloomsbory, 2020)



Catholics and Communists in Twentieth-Century Italy explores the critical moments in the relationship between the Catholic world and the Italian left, providing unmatched insight into one of the most significant dynamics in political and religious history in Italy in the last hundred years.
The book covers the Catholic Communist movement in Rome (1937-45), the experience of the Resistenza, the governmental collaboration between the Catholic Party (DC) and the Italian Communist Party (PCI) until 1947, and the dialogue between some of the key figures in both spheres in the tensest years of the Cold War. Daniela Saresella even goes on to consider the legacy that these interactions have left in Italy in the 21st century.
This pioneering study is the first on the subject in the English language and is of vital significance to historians of modern Italy and the Church alike.

Daniela Saresella is Professor of Contemporary History at the University of Milan, Italy.


“Daniela Saresella takes readers on an illuminating journey in the Italian Catholic political world, focusing especially on those many voices that from the late 19th century onward sought a dialogue with Communists and Socialists. Her insightful and broadranging book is a precious addition to the scholarship on 20th-century Italy and an indispensable read to comprehend the crucial role played by Catholics in Italian political and social life.” Ilaria Favretto, Professor of Contemporary European History, Kingston University, UK

“A rich, detailed, and fascinating compendium to one of the most significant threads in modern Italian history: how Catholics and the political Left saw one another, interacted, and on occasion collaborated very productively. This book is an important contribution to a burgeoning transnational conversation that has revealed how the entanglement of religion and political economy helped to shape the 20th century.” Piotr H. Kosicki, University of Maryland, USA and author of Catholics on the Barricades (2018)

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