Holy Smoke

The strange appeal of Integralism

28 min listen

In This Episode

You might imagine that a political project to place modern nation states under the supreme authority of the Catholic Church would stand zero chance of success anywhere in the world, including in traditionally Catholic countries. And you’d be right. Even so, a movement known as Integralism – whose 20th-century incarnations were closely related to fascism – has gripped the imaginations of ultra-conservative Catholics in America, and especially on campuses. The Eastern Orthodox political philosopher Kevin Vallier has written a book, All the Kingdoms of the World, about this bizarre development. It’s thoughtful and fair-minded – but Integralists have not taken kindly to his analysis and Vallier has found himself drawn into some unnerving exchanges on social media. I’m all the more grateful to him, therefore, for agreeing to be my guest on this episode of Holy Smoke. 

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