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Selling Catholicism Bishop Sheen and the Power of Television

by Christopher Lynch

  • ISBN: 9780813120676
  • ISBN10: 0813120675

Selling Catholicism Bishop Sheen and the Power of Television

by Christopher Lynch

  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Publisher: Univ Pr of Kentucky
  • Publish date: 09/01/1998
  • ISBN: 9780813120676
  • ISBN10: 0813120675
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Description: When the popularity of Milton Berle's groundbreaking television show began to slip, he quipped, "At least I'm losing my ratings to God!"

He was referring to the popularity of Life Is Worth Living and its host, Bishop Fulton J. Sheen. On the air from 1952 to 1957, Sheen offered a reassuring vision of Catholicism as patriotic and traditional -- in short, a vision of mainstream, postwar America.

Sheen provided his viewers with a sense of stability by sentimentalizing the medieval world and holding it out as a model for contemporary society. Offering clear-cut boundaries that could eliminate anxiety in the midst of sweeping cultural change, he discussed topics ranging from the role of women to fears of communism. Sheen's ability to speak to both Protestant and Catholic audiences is reflected today in our longing for the 1950s, the last golden era when everyone "knew" right from wrong.

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0813120675 University Press of Tennessee Press hardcover with dust jacket,
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