Talk:Mortara case

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Featured article Mortara case is a featured article; it (or a previous version of it) has been identified as one of the best articles produced by the Wikipedia community. Even so, if you can update or improve it, please do so.
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February 22, 2016 Good article nominee Listed
March 4, 2016 Featured article candidate Promoted
Current status: Featured article
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GA Review[edit]

This review is transcluded from Talk:Mortara case/GA1. The edit link for this section can be used to add comments to the review.

Reviewer: Tim riley (talk · contribs) 15:00, 22 February 2016 (UTC)


Initial comment[edit]

It isn't clear to me what this article is doing at GAN. In my view it belongs at FAC, but be that as it may, I am reviewing it against the GA criteria for now, though I expect (and hope) to see it at FAC in due course. I ought perhaps to put on record here that I am long familiar with Cliftonian's work and that both of us have reviewed several of the other's articles in the past.

I have corrected a handful of typos (which please check), apart from which I have precisely two queries:

  • There is a duplicate link to dowry
  • I was surprised at the spelling of "cruelest" in the Spectator quote, though of course am quite prepared to be told it is a correct transcription (or perhaps that I can't spell).

As a personal stylistic point I wonder about "captivated" in the first sentence. To me, "captivate" means to please extravagantly, to enrapture. Riveting the imagination of a critical public is not how I would use the verb. Perhaps just "captured the attention of" might do?

None of which amounts to a row of beans, and I have much pleasure in promoting the article to GA.

Overall summary[edit]

GA review – see WP:WIAGA for criteria

  1. Is it reasonably well written?
    A. Prose quality:
    B. MoS compliance for lead, layout, words to watch, fiction, and lists:
  2. Is it factually accurate and verifiable?
    A. References to sources:
    Well referenced.
    B. Citation of reliable sources where necessary:
    Well referenced.
    C. No original research:
  3. Is it broad in its coverage?
    A. Major aspects:
    B. Focused:
  4. Is it neutral?
    Fair representation without bias:
  5. Is it stable?
    No edit wars, etc:
  6. Does it contain images to illustrate the topic?
    A. Images are copyright tagged, and non-free images have fair use rationales:
    Well illustrated.
    B. Images are provided where possible and appropriate, with suitable captions:
    Well illustrated.
  7. Overall:
    Pass or Fail:

I learned much from this article, and am very glad to have had the pleasure of reviewing it. I found it fascinating. Tim riley talk 15:00, 22 February 2016 (UTC)

Spoken Wikipedia[edit]

Hello editors. My wife frequently suffers from insomnia, and one thing we've discovered is that reading from Wikipedia is an effective way of . . . boring her to sleep. To that end, I have been reading Wikipedia articles to her when she needs it and I've got a computer handy. Just after I finished reading List of common misconceptions, I had the idea that I could help out the community by recording the reading of the article, and contributing to the WP:SPEAK project. I plan on recording this article, soon (probably the next time she needs some help sleeping and I've got a computer). Don't expect an amazing reading, but it'll be something. I'm working under the assumption that something is better than nothing. McKay (talk) 04:00, 20 June 2016 (UTC)

Thanks McKay, looking forward to hearing it. Hope it helps your wife. Cheers —  Cliftonian (talk)  07:08, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
Done! McKay (talk) 00:44, 22 June 2016 (UTC)
Hi Mckaysalisbury, really good work, but do you have the second half somewhere? This file seems to end halfway through Feletti's trial. Cheers —  Cliftonian (talk)  21:41, 22 June 2016 (UTC)

24 hr time[edit]

Would it be reasonable to either change the 24 hr. time standard used in the article to 12hr. time. I realize some English speaking countries use 24 hr. so maybe it would be better to include both as a courtesy to American readers. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Eman320 (talkcontribs) 16:18, 21 June 2016 (UTC)

Bad lede?[edit]

Despite the GA rating, I think the lede to this article is poor- in addition to the summary, it repeats and expands of=n most of the same facts in the next few paragraphs which are then again expanded in the main body. Any objections to my heavily editing the lede? Wkharrisjr (talk) 23:52, 21 June 2016 (UTC)

This article is an FA, not a GA. Please explain exactly what you'd like to see changed in the lead as I don't see any major problem with it, and nor did the reviewers at FAC. Cheers —  Cliftonian (talk)  05:46, 22 June 2016 (UTC)

Objection to use of Kertzer[edit]

Please note the message below was originally posted within the long-finished GA review here—I have simply moved it here. —  Cliftonian (talk)  14:11, 21 March 2017 (UTC)

NO! This is not well referenced. Almost all of the information in the article references works by Kertzer. If you review Kertzer's works you will find that he seems to write almost exclusively rather sensationalistic denunciations of the Papacy. His most recent work attempts to pretend that Pius XI was a good buddy of Mussolini. What we have here is more baloney scholarship, in my humble opinion. I reviewed some of Kertzers other books, and we find that he has one about the summer he spent with the Italian Communists, which further calls his credibility into play. "Comrades and Christians" I am loathe to trust someone who seems favorably disposed towards Italian Communism, who keeps writing books that offer a sensationalistic account of the supposed secret crimes of the Papacy. His book about Mussolini has been challenged for getting things wrong. http://www.crisismagazine.com/2015/painting-catholicism-with-the-fascist-brush He did get a Pulitzer prize for the book, but these days those are handed out on a political basis, not a basis of truth. What we have is another "Hitler's Pope" type work, which we know told the exact opposite of truth, and an author that likes to shade and "interpret" facts for us to make someone look bad. He does not give us facts and let us make up our own minds, he gives us facts and tells us what to think. 184.97.166.58 (talk) 19:10, 20 March 2017 (UTC)

Furthermore, in another of his works America Magazine, generally considered on the left, but by American Jesuits, had this to say:

Lawler, author of many books and editor of several journals, intimately familiar with the ways of the publishing world, examines several of Hochhuth’s heirs, focusing mostly but not exclusively on David Kertzer’s "The Popes against the Jews (2001)". Kertzer argues that several modern Popes—culminating with Pius XI and Pius XII—were anti-Semites who paved “the road to the Holocaust.” Lawler, initially beguiled by Kertzer’s argument, became suspicious, re-examined Kertzer’s supporting evidence and discovered “a flood of errors,” “rhetorical subterfuge,” “slanted paraphrase,” “a potpourri of mistranslations…juggled chronology, and… out-and-out falsehoods.” Before he had ever seen the Vatican archives, Kertzer had already made up his mind about the popes, as he made clear in a New York Times op-ed column: “The explanation of what made the Holocaust possible is to be found in no small part in the files of the Inquisition…. “

Lawler repeatedly demonstrates that Kertzer’s accusatory examples—ranging from Vatican support for the myth of Jewish ritual murder or of anti-Semitism based on a form letter sent in receipt for a book expressing anti-Semitism—are demonstrably false or illogical.

Contrary to what gullible cynics might expect, Lawler’s book is no whitewash of the church hierarchy. Kertzer, however, creates a fiction of “aggressive papal support of the hatred that led to the Holocaust” and insists that “a whole-cloth conspiracy against Jews [was] perpetrated by the elders of the Vatican.”

http://www.americamagazine.org/issue/culture/tortured-history

Kertzer is unreliable, and this entry relies entirely on his work for its tale. 20:36, 20 March 2017 (UTC) — Preceding unsigned comment added by 184.97.166.58 (talk)

Four reliable sources are cited in the article supporting the assertion that Kertzer's The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara is the standard reference work for this subject. Kertzer did not write this Wikipedia article, I did (with the invaluable assistance of others). I went to great lengths to be neutral and indeed was complimented on this by reviewers of the article. I see you criticise various other Kertzer books above, but do you have any reliable sources attesting that the book The Kidnapping of Edgardo Mortara is an unreliable source? Cheers —  Cliftonian (talk)  14:17, 21 March 2017 (UTC)

“The year of his conversion”?[edit]

The article contains the following: “the Lourdes apparitions of 1858 having occurred in the same year as his own conversion to Christianity.” This is surely difficult to support, in light of the fact that the crux of the matter is whether or not he was baptized as an infant ( a “cradle Catholic”). Identifying 1858 as the year of his “conversion” to Christianity suggests that he was baptized in that year, which would negate the story of earlier baptism; if he was baptized as a baby, he would be deemed to be a Christian in the eyes of the Church from that moment onwards, which is why the whole incident started. Might it not be better to say that in 1858 he became a practising Catholic? Jock123 (talk) 13:29, 4 September 2017 (UTC)