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Author: Norman, Edward
Publisher: Continuum International Pub Inc; Publication Date: 2003
Paperback; ISBN: 9780826471376
Volumes: 1; Pages: 176
List Price in Paper: $23.95 Our price: $23.95
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Secularisation is not a systematic attempt--of the sort which might be made by a social scientist--to describe and identify every feature of a fading religious landscape. It is a landscape, indeed, which was once familiar, and yet which now appears almost unrecognisable to those who have lived within it all their lives. They and many external observers are saddened by the decline of institutional religion in Britain and cannot clearly discern the full nature of the causes.
Edward Norman, author of An Anglican Catechism and Out of the Depths, holds to account a number of the fundamental transformations in religious understanding itself which help the reader to grasp the bigger picture of the decline of The Church in Britain.
"Vicars are roundly accused of keeping quiet about the 'sins of the flesh' in a book out next month from a senior Anglican cleric. ... Canon Norman's fierce denunciation appears in Secularisation, a controversial new study of the decline of institutional religion in Britain."--Yorkshire Post
"A tightly written book."--The Daily Telegraph
"An assessment of a fading religious language."--Church Times
"Falling attendances and a declining influence on our lives--few would doubt that the fortunes of the Church of England are on the wane. But few would also go so far as to say that not only is this decay irreversible and terminal, but that it is the fault of the church itself. ... The reason for the church's imminent demise, according to Canon Norman, is that it has moved away from the Christian teachings on sin and forgiveness, and instead concentrated on ways of making our lives more comfortable. As a church leader, chancellor of York Minster as well as a distinguished theologian, with his latest book, Secularisation, his 18th on the problems of the relations between church and society, he does not exempt himself from responsibility, but the blame is very firmly laid at the doors of the church itself."--Northern Echo
"Edward Norman is on to something. Secularisation is not just empty pews. People who do visit churches for the architecture or the wonderful music, he says, act in an 'ungodly' way--that is to say, on a natural, human, level. ... Dr Norman thinks we are turning the Last Supper into a self-help group."--Tablet
"The Chancellor of York Minster is one of our clearest thinkers. And he does not waste words in this diagnosis of the state of the Church and nation."--King Charles Clarion
"Professor Norman is one of the deepest thinkers in England writing about church matters. ... Though the book is concerned with his own Church of England, nevertheless, so much of it is relevant to the Catholic Church. ... Do not read it if you are complacent, if you think the Church is not in a state of crisis or if you do not like to think. Then again..."--Catholic Times
"It grips the reader. ... Norman's undoubted knowledge and remarkable skill in pulling together such a wide ranging assessment of the church's task today..."--Borderlands
"Every so often a book appears whose argument is so elegant and provocative that, instead of criticising it, all a reviewer wants to do is reproduce as much of its substance as possible. Edward Norman's Secularisation belongs in this category."--Catholic Herald
"I have come to the view that very important questions are being raised here which cannot be ignored by Christians of any tradition who are serious about their engagement with post-modern society."--Baptist Times
"Edward Norman's Secularisation is replete with negative judgements on the state of contemporary society and the church delivered throughout with icy clarity and precision. It ought to arouse intense debate."--Theology