21 October 2023, The Tablet

The Catholic Church and how it got to where it is today

The Catholic Church and how it got to where it is today

In Losing a Kingdom, Gaining the World, Dr. Ambrogio A. Caiani tells the story of the Catholic Church in the modern age. Beginning with the aftermath of the French Revolution and the democratic rebellions of 1848, Caiani follows the Church's evolution that sees three popes being forced out of Rome, the secular power of papacy being destroyed, a disastrous series of concordats with fascist states in the 1930s and the Church’s retreat into a fortress of unreason.

As Catholicism lost its temporal power it made huge spiritual strides expanding across the globe and gaining new converts in America, Africa and the Far East; losing a kingdom but gaining the world, he writes.

In this Tablet podcast, assistant editor Ruth Gledhill talks to the author about why he wrote the book, some of his discoveries and their implications, and what he hopes to do next.


Ambrogio A. Caiani grew up in Ireland and spent his summers in Italy and France. Since his early childhood he has had a passion for history, politics, and religion. He was educated at the Universities of York and Caiani received his doctorate from Sidney Sussex College, University of Cambridge in 2009. He is currently Senior Lecturer in Modern European History at the University of Kent.

He is the author of two previous books: To Kidnap a Pope, Napoleon and Pius VII 1800-1815, which won the Franco-British Society Book Prize 2021, and Louis XVI and the French Revolution 1789-1792.


You can find this episode via all main podcast providers such as Apple and Spotify.


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