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Keith Robbins, building on his previous writing on the modern history of the interlocking but distinctive territories of the British Isles, takes a wide-ranging, innovative and challenging look at the twentieth-century history of the main bodies, at once national and universal, which have collectively constituted the Christian Church. The protracted search for elusive unity is emphasized. Particular beliefs, attitudes, policies and structures are located in their social and cultural contexts. Prominent individuals, clerical and lay, are scrutinized. Religion and politics intermingle, highlighting, for churches and states, fundamental questions of identity and allegiance, of public and private values, in a century of ideological conflict, violent confrontation (in Ireland), two world wars and protracted Cold War.
The massive change experienced by the countries and people of the Isles since 1900 has encompassed shifting relationships between England, Ireland (and Northern Ireland), Scotland and Wales, the end of the British Empire, the emergence of a new Europe and, latterly, major immigration of adherents of Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism and other faiths from outside Europe: developments scarcely conceivable at the outset. Such a broad contextual perspective provides an essential background to understanding the puzzling ambiguities evident both in secularization and enduring Christian faith. Robbins provides a cogent and compelling overview of this turbulent century for the churches of the Isles.
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Keith Robbins is Emeritus Vice-Chancellor at the University of Wales, Lampeter.Review:
"Keith Robbins has previously written chiefly on secular topics. He therefore takes a lay view of the history of the church which is refreshing in its objectivity... a history to be read reflectively and to be savoured slowly... The allusions are engaging and at times unusual; the references
are voluminous but not intrusive. Professor Robbins has it seems read and digested everything which has been written, secular and sacred."
--Peter Watkins, Church of England Reader 24/02/2010
"Any history of the church in 20th century Britain and Ireland is bound to tell the story of decline but, as this absorbing narrative makes clear, this does not mean the church ceased to be important or that its story is lacking in interest... Robbins is able to write with real insight about
the history of the churches in all the countries he covers. He is sympathetic but perceptive... Robbins does not only cover the public and insitutional life of the church, he also shows a grasp of theological developments."
--Paul Richardson, Church of England Newspaper 06/03/2009
"This new volume in the Oxford History of the Christian Church deserves prolonged applause"
--David L. Edwards Church Times 13/02/2009
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Book Description Condition: New. Oxford University Press, 2010. 530p. Paperback. Series: Oxford History of the Christian Church. A superb overview of the development and activity of the main bodies within the Church.Covers a vast amount of ground.Local and regional historians will find the work and indispensable framework, as well as a sure guide. Northern History. 02/09/2011 (Publisher's information). Condition: New Print on Demand. Printed on Demand. Seller Inventory # 39550
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