Humanae Vitae: Catholic Attitudes to Birth Control in the Netherlands and Transnational Church Politics, 1945–1975

  • Chris DolsEmail author
  • Maarten van den Bos
Part of the Genders and Sexualities in History book series (GSX)


This contribution examines how the politics of the Catholic church in the Netherlands during the 1960s were a product of growing tensions between national and international concerns and the various ways in which debates on contraception and church politics became increasingly intertwined. After the promulgation of Humanae Vitae, Dutch Catholicism continued its embrace of a reform-minded and sociologically informed post-conciliar theology, driven by a national understanding and experience of sexual ‘modernity’ that many held to be incompatible with the views of the Holy See. In the early 1970s, Pope Paul VI and his curia appointed two rather traditional bishops to halt what was deemed a runaway church province.

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for the Heritage of Religious LifeSt. AgathaThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Banning AssociationAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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