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How have religious faith and experience motivated people in the past, and how do they continue to influence people today?
Our work emphasizes the variety and diversity of religious expressions, including the Protestant and Catholic divisions in post-Reformation Christianity, the relationship between religion, the state and politics, new religious movements and the philosophical basis for faith and religion.
The Oxford Centre for Methodism and Church History holds major archives and art collections, produces a journal, Wesley and Methodist Studies, and hosts regular conferences.
Our academic staff have published very widely on topics such as sacred space, witchcraft in the early modern period, religion and the state in the eighteenth century, Methodism in the eighteenth century, theological responses to Nazism, religion and psychoanalysis, the material and visual cultures of religion, blasphemy, and secularism.
Current research projects include the eighteenth century church and sex, the religious culture of Europe in the seventeenth century, and Freud and feminism.
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BA, MA PhD, DLITT, FRHISTS, FRSA, PGCE
School of History, Philosophy and Culture
Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
+44 (0)1865 488610
The main and original contribution of this volume is to offer a discussion of teleology through the prism of religion, philosophy and history. The goal is to incorporate teleology within discussions across these three disciplines rather than restrict it to one as is customarily the case. The chapters cover a wide range of topics, from individual teleologies to collective ones; ideas put forward by the French aristocrat Arthur de Gobineau and the Scottish philosopher David Hume, by the Anglican theologian and founder of Methodism, John Wesley, and the English naturalist Charles Darwin; it criss-crosses intellectually and conceptually from a discussion of morality to that of the sacralisation of politics.
Using John Trusler's unpublished memoirs, this article seeks to reconsider his trade in printed sermons using imitation manuscript print, which clergy could pass off as their own. While the trade smacks of corruption and dishonesty, and attracted considerable scorn for Trusler, it was in some respects a reflection of late eighteenth-century sermon culture. Trusler's defence to Bishop Terrick of London of trading in imitation manuscript sermons suggests that he was not embarrassed by the enterprise. Trusler's talents as a preacher were considerable, but Victorian Britain came to regard his commerce as reprehensible.