The history of religion in Britain is a turbulent one, which shaped politics and culture. This course looks at how Britain's religious beliefs, cultures and controversies collided with wider society, particularly in the North West.
The course will concentrate on the meanings of religion in ordinary people's lives, rather than examining Britain's denominations closely. By the end of the course we will have a picture of what religion meant to people, how this changed over time, and of how (and whether) Britain became a secular nation.
Major themes will include:
The rebirth of Catholicism in Britain, and why this caused riots in the streets.
The rise of evangelicalism, and the middle class culture which came with it.
The importance of Methodism in towns and cities, and how people saw this as a means to free themselves from old chains.
Religion during wartime, and whether the British turned away from the Churches.
And, did Britain become a secular nation, only to become a religious one once again in recent times and through different faiths?