The Christian religion has played an important role in British culture over the last eighteen hundred years. It was so ingrained that Biblical doctrine and quotations were naturally brought into conversation and Biblical principles were used as a standard for living even if faith tended towards a nominal nature. However, closer to the 20th century more and more questions were raised and different views on the nature of religion were mooted. People became more blasé, cynical or indifferent to (the Christian) religion and this is illustrated in writings of that period.
It is important to note that in most of the literature Christianity was the preferred religion. The vast majority of the readership would have recognized standard quotations from the Bible and understood basic Christian doctrine. Wycherley, very much a libertine, was a notable exception to this rule as his plays were devoid of any reference to religion.
However, a reliance on what the priest or vicar taught and consequently a lack of knowledge of the Bible often caused superstition and bigotry.
Some recurring themes are superstition, community and the law. These, and other themes are explored more fully on a further page.
There are pages on this website devoted to the following writers mentioned above:
The following is a list of books discussing Christian and faith topics. All are available in the West Midlands Creative Literature Collection:
The mystery of suffering(1878)
Matchless mercy (1885)
Free opinions (1905)
The substance of faith allied with science (1907)
Reason and belief (1914)
The musings of a pilgrim (1914)
The unknown God (1934)
The following books are autobiographical:
Wrestling with an angel (1977)
Sarah: Joy in the morning (1985)
Through cloud and sunshine (1986)
The Brother Cadfael mysteries, by Edith Pargeter, are set in a 13th century monastery.
The hobbit and The lord of the rings by J.R.R. Tolkien have a theme of good against evil.
Page created 6 November 2002 and last
updated 24 January 2003
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