The Death of Christian Britain  book cover
1st Edition

The Death of Christian Britain

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ISBN 9780415181495
Published January 24, 2001 by Routledge
272 Pages

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Book Description

The Death of Christian Britain uses the latest techniques to offer new formulations of religion and secularisation and explores what it has meant to be 'religious' and 'irreligious' during the last 200 years.

By listening to people's voices rather than purely counting heads, it offers a fresh history of de-christianisation, and predicts that the British experience since the 1960s is emblematic of the destiny of the whole of western Christianity.

Challenging the generally held view that secularization has been a long and gradual process beginning with the industrial revolution, it proposes that it has been a catastrophic short term phenomenon starting with the 1960's.

Is Christianity in Britain nearing extinction? Is the decline in Britain emblematic of the fate of western Christianity? Topical and controversial, The Death of Christian Britain is a bold and original work that will bring some uncomfortable truths to light.


'A tremendously impressive book and wonderful social history.' - Professor Niall Ferguson, Start the Week, Radio 4

'This book should be read by anybody who cares about the future of religion. [Brown's] statistics are convincing and disquieting. The personal testimonies he quotes are moving and revealing. He shows clearly that Christianity, as we have known it in this country, is in its death throes.' - Karen Armstrong, The Independent

'A very brave, readable book, and a marvelous social history lesson ... Brown has a wonderful final sentence: "Britain is showing the rest of the world how religion can die." I hope for all our sakes he is wrong. But this is a powerful wake-up call.'IAntonia Swinson, Scotland on Sunday

'Church leaders should not ignore this book.' - Patrick Comerford, Irish Times

'Can Christianity change radically enough to discover new life or is it destined, by desperately clinging to its old ways, or to die? ... Callum Brown plunges bravely into one of the most complex debates of our era in this engaging book. He does not claim that we are all atheists now, but asserts that a massive shift in our self-understanding as a nation has occurred, which has reduced Christianity to the status of an eccentric and irrelevant sub-culture in a dynamically plural society ... it exactly mirrors my own theological experience.' - Richard Holloway, Bishop of Edinburgh, The Scotsman

'A study which deserves the attention of all who are seriously concerned either with the history or with the future of British Christianity.' - David L. Edwards, Tablet

'Very valuable.' - Stephen Logan, Spectator

'At last we have a book that may have broken the mould Callum Brown has given us some highly significant and innovative ways to think about the "problem" of religion.' - David Nash, New Humanist

'One of the most entertaining, moving and stimulating works which I have read upon its subject.' - Sheridan Gilley, Reviews in History

`This is quite simply a remarkable, courageous and deeply illuminating book.' - Colin Greene