Religion And Change In Modern Britain

During the first period, religion was mainly shaped by its relationship with the state. However, its relation to the market mainly became important from the 1970s. The fundamental development during the entire period is the welfare state’s establishment. This became attention of Britain’s national hope and unity as well as faith itself (Aldridge, 2013). Even though various Christianity forms connected themselves with this particular project, “welfare utopianism” they as well created secular commitments and forms that planted seeds for the recent controversy between secular and religious. Even though religion was perceived by many people to have departed between the years1960s to 1990s, and yet secularisation narratives were widespread, the field of religion was changing considerably, and the state and church were unable to exercise influence over it with regards to the media and market’s recent opportunities (Grace, 2015).

The de-regulation period led to the emergence of new religious actors (women and ethnic minorities), and by 1980s, a time when religion appeared to the public, it was more diverse and evident as it was earlier. Religion results were bringing controversies, and the state wanted to re-regulate it during the 21st century to bring it under control (Hamilton, 2002). However, new religious groups and identities, media uses, religious actors and transnational linkages made the engagement terms different. The Britain society is a religious, secular and diversely ethnic with the establishment of the Church of England as well as the Church of Scotland (Woodhead and Catto, 2012). During the post-war prosperity settlement, the traditional roles were carried out by the churches and health, education, as well as welfare, were adopted continuously by the state.

Confidence existed that achievement of the progress is possible through combining technology and rationalism, science and paternalistic policy making (Woodhead 2012). In spite of the settlement increment of migrants from the religious backgrounds and throughout the commonwealth, religion was not considered an important factor for the public life. From the beginning of the year the 1960s onwards, secularisation theorists suggested that religion was leaving behind the social significance through modernisation as well as nurturing the irrelevance of religion (Wilson, 2003). According to the cultural historian Callum Brown, he tracks the ‘death of Christian Britain’ precisely to the year 1960s.

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He argues that at this period, women were able to control their reproduction through the use of contraceptives as well as Wales, Scotland and England’s legislation regarding abortion. They as well started to work outside homes in increasingly growing numbers and the legal dissolution of marriages became easy (Brown, 2009). Brown’s argument has experienced many challenges and other scholars’ claims that there is a reduction in Christianity participation within Britain’s historic churches (Modood, 2012). Possessions exist that the 1960s were still an influential decade, in which various institutions like the state, BBC and churches were challenged continuously. There was an emergence of new identity politics directed towards greater rights and recognition following the American thinking concerning civil rights and racial discrimination (Modood, 2012).

Despite that, religion remained widely ignored as illustrated by the Race Relations Act of 1996. The act disallowed discrimination in the provision of employment, education, goods and services, premises and facilities by race, colour, ethnicity, and nationality (Sandberg, 2016). Consequently, Sikhs and Jews could pursue protection under the legislation from ethnic origins, however, this was not the case for the other religious groups. The explicit protection of religion was not there until the 1998 Northern Ireland Act and the Human Rights Act (Modood, 2011). In the early 1990s was when the religious minorities started to affirm themselves within the powerful equality framework.

In the year 1992, the Conservative government made the Inner City Religious Council as a consultation mechanism with religious groups. In 1997, the new labour substituted it after resuming power with Faith Communities Consultative Council (Purdam et al., 2007). The steps can be possibly explained as the gradual attention of the consecutive governments of UK from the early 1990s to participate with the religious groups, implemented by the international and domestic developments such as the Iranian Revolution of 1979, the Rushdie Affair of 1989, the 1989 collapse of the Soviet Union and finally the Church of England of 1985 (Casanova and Davie, 1994).

The London bombing of 2005, July 7th, as well as the terrorist attacks of September 11th 2001 in the US, intensified the “re-emergence” of religion to the public sector (Idler and Kasl, 1997). The re-emergence pattern perceived meaning in the public sector. The religious studies have been maintained generally at the anthropology and specialists subdivisions in the United States since the millennium. However, the religious interest has developed across humanities and arts, and social sciences all over the western academia and domestically (Casanova, 2011). The trend is mirrored by the substantial investment in Economic and Social Research Council as well as the Arts and Humanities Research Council in the Religion and Society Program and disciplines’ range involved.

Considerable, cross-disciplinary study programs directed towards religion have been commissioned from the millennium by the European Commission in Sweden, Canada and Switzerland. Nowadays, Britain is developing in religious diversity and complex context where religion is viewed as a renewed public importance even though there exist persistent decline of people attending churches from the year 1960s (Casanova, 2011). Generalizing British religious today is very challenging. We can claim that they cannot be assumed as the majority as they seem to embrace diversity and relationship trust, authenticity, and social media. Furthermore, they are affected by the intensification and inequalities of the global relations. Prediction of the trends is challenging, however, recent approaches regarding the structural interplay as well as agency results in old models’ questions within the religious groups and academia (Idler and Kasl, 1997).

Since the international economy has become continuously interconnected, there has been an intensification of migration and expansion of the welfare state and retreating. Women have been able to work outdoors, the historic churches have continued continuously to lose members, there has been reconstruction and construction of youths as a distinct social group, and the collective political activism has improved and now reducing (Beckford, 2003). At the important moment of transition of people’s lives in Britain, as the non-religious persons, they are affected by the consequences of the transitions and the global forces as well. Belonging refers to having a relationship to a given place, nation or homeland as well as neighbourhood. However, it can include having a sense of belonging to a particular community or faith (Weber, 1993).

Other than the impact of the secularization’s processes, it seems that religion is increasingly becoming meaningful identity signifier. Fewer people in Britain are passing n a Christian identity or attending church than before. However, individuals are as well becoming religious in their new ways (Woodhead, 2010). Britain’s religion and belief have been challenged for many years, and the decline of religious issues have been developed and as well identified. The inclination of believing and not belonging was noticed within the public at the end of the twentieth century as well as in the twenty-first century (Davie 1994). Religion and belief have forever been the part of Britain’s society in many ways (Meister 2011). It has added value to the lives of people in significant and various ways as it provided meaning to the institutional and societal norms (Davie 1994).

As from the middle of the twentieth century, religion and beliefs have gone through various challenges and several continuous phases together with the historical and political change (Weller 2007). Being found within the western world, Britain can be distinguished by modernisation (Meister, 2011). Modernization is the transferring process from the old way of living to a modern society. The particular modernisation mirrors itself in the entire society. Furthermore, it also mirrors on the part of the societies through concepts, tangible (such as buildings), beliefs, values and ideas. The latter has majorly had an impact on the position of religion within the field of the public. According to the investigation conducted by the sociology of religion, a report was made that empiricism; technology, as well as rationale, has replaced the religious view of societal definition and social norms (Beyer, 2013).

However, this also pertains to the outlook of the public regarding the public. However, the self-standing awareness has maintained the religious meaning and faith as it was reflected in the twenty-first century’s vast society (Berger 2006). Individual identities, as well as the self-sustaining consciousness, carry the values that operate the perspectives of people in life (Pentaris 2012). To grasp the service users’ potential needs regarding the delivery of services by the Health Care Professionals (HCP) fully and also for the better apprehension of critical observation, the need to create a framework for viewing of the analysis is necessary. According to Davie, (1994), the researcher has paid more attention to the political, economic as well as social changes in Britain’s post-war (Weller et al., 2013). This particular manifestation guided her to the discovery of “not belonging” and multiplicity of a church attitude.

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References

  • Aldridge, A., 2013, Religion in the Contemporary World–a Sociological Introduction, 3rd Edition, Alan Aldridge.
  • Beckford, J.A., 2003, Social theory and religion, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press. Berger, I.E., 2006, “The influence of religion on philanthropy in Canada,” Voluntas: International Journal of Voluntary and Non-profit Organizations, 17(2), pp.110-127.
  • Beyer, P., 2013, Religions in global society, London, Routledge. Bramadat, P.A. and Biles, J., 2005, “Introduction: The re-emergence of religion in international public discourse,” Journal of International Migration and Integration/Revue de l'integration et de la migration internationale, 6(2), pp.171-176.
  • Casanova, J., 2011, Public religions in the modern world, Chicago, University of Chicago Press. Grace, D., 2015, Religion in Britain: A Persistent Paradox, 2nd Edition, Wiley-Blackwell. Hamilton, M.B., 2002, The Sociology of Religion: An Introduction to Theoretical and Comparative Perspectives, London, Routledge.
  • Idler, E.L. and Kasl, S.V., 1997, “Religion among Disabled and Nondisabled Persons I: Cross-sectional Patterns in Health Practices, Social Activities, and Well-being Ellen,” The Journals of Gerontology Series B: Psychological Sciences and Social Sciences, 52(6), pp.S294-S305.
  • Meister, C.V. ed., 2011, The Oxford handbook of religious diversity, Oxford, Oxford University Press.
  • Modood, T., 2012, “2011 Paul Hanly Furfey Lecture: Is there a Crisis of Secularism in Western Europe?” Sociology of Religion, 73(2), pp.130-149.
  • Pentaris, P., 2012, “Religious competence in social work practice: The UK picture,” Social Work & Society, 10(2), pp.1-4.
  • Purdam, K., Afkhami, R., Crockett, A. and Olsen, W., 2007, “Religion in the UK: An overview of equality statistics and evidence gaps,” Journal of Contemporary Religion, 22(2), pp.147-168.
  • Sandberg, R., 2016, Religious symbols and the making of contemporary religious identities. In Religion and Legal Pluralism (pp. 131-148), London, Routledge.
  • Weber, M., 1993, The sociology of religion, Beacon Press. Weller, P., Purdam, K., Ghanea, N. and Cheruvallil-Contractor, S., 2013, Religion or belief, discrimination and equality: Britain in global contexts, A&C Black.
  • Wilson, B., 2003, Secularisation: Key Ideas in Sociology, London, Nelson Thornes Ltd. Woodhead, L., 2010, Real religion and fuzzy spirituality? Taking sides in the sociology of religion. In Religions of Modernity (pp. 31-48), Brill.
  • Woodhead, L., and Rebecca C., (Eds), 2012, Religion and Change in Modern Britain, London, Routledge.

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