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Jesuit Colleges and Universities in the United States: A History
by Michael T. Rizzi
Catholic University of America Press, 2022
eISBN: 978-0-8132-3617-9 | Paper: 978-0-8132-3616-2
Library of Congress Classification LC493.R59 2022
Dewey Decimal Classification 378.0712

ABOUT THIS BOOK | AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY | TOC
ABOUT THIS BOOK
Jesuit Colleges and Universities in the United States provides a comprehensive history of Jesuit higher education in the United States, weaving together the stories of the fifty-four colleges and universities that the Jesuits have operated (successfully and unsuccessfully) since 1789. It emphasizes the connections among the institutions, exploring how certain Jesuit schools like Georgetown University gave birth to others like Boston College by sharing faculty, financial resources, accreditation, and even presidents throughout their history. The book also explores how the colleges responded to common challenges – including anti-Catholic prejudice in the United States, the push from government authorities to modernize their shared curriculum, and the pull from Roman authorities to remain loyal to Catholic tradition.

The story is comprehensive, covering the colonial era to the present, and takes a fresh look at themes like the rise of the research university in the 1880s and the administrative reforms of the 1960s. It also provides a modern and timely perspective on the role of Jesuit colleges in racial justice, women’s education, and other civil rights issues, drawing attention to underappreciated Jesuit contributions in these areas. It draws from both published and archival sources on the history of each institution to construct a single narrative, identifying common themes, challenges, and trends. Through the eyes of Jesuit colleges, it traces the evolution of American higher education and the role of Catholics in the United States over more than two centuries.

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