Contributor biographical information for Constantine's sword : the church and the Jews : a history / James Carroll.


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James Carroll was born in Chicago in 1943, and raised in Washington where his father, an Air Force general, served as the Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency. Carroll attended Georgetown University before entering the seminary to train for the Catholic priesthood. He received BA and MA degrees from St. Paul's College, the Paulist Fathers' seminary in Washington, and was ordained to the Catholic priesthood in 1969. Carroll served as Catholic Chaplain at Boston University from 1969 to 1974 and then left the priesthood to become a writer.

In 1974 Carroll was Playwright-in-Residence at the Berkshire Theater Festival in Stockbridge, MA. In 1976 he published his first novel, Madonna Red, which was translated into seven languages. Since then he has published nine additional novels, including the New York Times bestsellers Mortal Friends (1978), Family Trade (1982), and Prince of Peace (1984). His novels The City Below (1994) and Secret Father (2003) were named Notable Books of the Year by the New York Times. Carroll's essays and articles have appeared in The New Yorker, Daedalus, and other publications. His op-ed page column has run weekly in the Boston Globe since 1992.

Carroll's memoir, An American Requiem: God, My Father, and the War that Came Between Us, received the 1996 National Book Award in nonfiction and other awards. His book Constantine's Sword: The Church and the Jews: A History, published in 2001, was a New York Times bestseller and was honored as one of the Best Books of 2001 by the Los Angeles Times, the Christian Science Monitor, and others. It was named a Notable Book of the Year by the New York Times, and won the Melcher Book Award, the James Parks Morton Interfaith Award, and National Jewish Book Award in History. Responding to the Catholic sex abuse crisis in 2002, Carroll published Toward A New Catholic Church: The Promise of Reform. In 2004 he published Crusade: Chronicles of an Unjust War, adapted from his Boston Globe columns since 9/11. In May 2005, he published House of War: The Pentagon and the Disastrous Rise of American Power, a history of the Pentagon, which the Chicago Tribune called "the first great non-fiction book of the new millennium."

Carroll is a regular participant in on-going Jewish-Christian-Muslim encounters at the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem. Carroll is a member of the Council of PEN-New England, which he chaired for four years. He has been a Shorenstein Fellow at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University and a Fellow at the Center for the Study of Values in Public Life at the Harvard Divinity School. He is a trustee of the Boston Public Library, a member of the Advisory Board of the International Center for Ethics, Justice, and Public Life at Brandeis University, and a member of the Dean's Council at the Harvard Divinity School. Carroll is a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a Distinguished Scholar-in-Residence at Suffolk University.

James Carroll lives in Boston with his wife, the novelist Alexandra Marshall. They have two grown children.


Library of Congress subject headings for this publication:
Christianity and antisemitism -- History.
Catholic Church -- Relations -- Judaism.
Judaism -- Relations -- Catholic Church.