Parish Communities and Religious Conflict in the Vale of Gloucester, 1590-1690
Many historians have attempted to understand the violent religious conflicts of the seventeenth century from viewpoints dominated by concepts of class, gender, and demography. But few studies have explored the cultural process whereby religious symbolism created social cohesion and political allegiance. This book examines religious conflict in the parish communities of early modern England using an interdisciplinary approach that includes all these perspectives.
Daniel Beaver studies the urban parish of Tewkesbury and six rural parishes in its hinterland over a period of one hundred years, drawing on local ecclesiastical court records, sermons, parish records, corporate minutes and charity books, and probate documents. He discusses the centrality of religious symbols and ceremonies in the ordering of local societies, particularly in local conceptions of place, personal identity, and the life cycle. Four phases in the transformation of parish communities emerge and are examined in this book.
This exploration of the interrelationship of religion, politics, and society, and the transformation of local communities in civil war, has a value beyond the particular history of early modern England, contributing to a broader understanding of religious revivals, fundamentalisms, and the persistent link between religion, nationalism, and ethnic identity in the modern world.
Part I: Social Form, 1590-1690
Part II: Social Process, 1590-1690
Conclusion. Symbol and Boundary: Relgious Belief, Ceremony, and Social Order
Appendix 1. Tables
"A significant historical study...This is not simply a work of local history, as it throws considerable light on wider aspects of the great conflict that convulsed Stuart England...The discussions are confident, sensible, and well grounded in the evidence...No other book that I know of covers the experience of a region (as distinct from a town) throughout the entire troubled history of seventeenth-century England in anything like this depth...It is original in the systematic way it applies anthropological concepts to English political and religious conflicts." DD--David E. Underdown, Yale University
"He turns a local study into something that has theoretical force, as well as taking issue with other historians of Tudor-Stuart England on matters like the impact of the Civil War, 'revolution,' 'Restoration,' Laudianism and the like." DD--David D. Hall, Harvard Divinity School "Parish Communities and Religious Conflict in the Vale of Gloucester examines the belief and activities of ordinary men and women in the Vale of Gloucestershire during the last years of Elizabeth's reign and throughout most of the seventeenth century. It goes beyond most regional studies, however, in emphasizing the effect of religious change and conflict on local communities. Class and gender as well as religious convictions are seen as important factors determining social cohesion and political allegiance...this is a valuable study that should interest historians as well as students of religion in England." DD--History
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Church History as a Cultural System
Reverend Histories Geography and Landscape
Parts Persons and Participants in the Commonwealth Social Relations Institutions and Authority
Under the Hand of God Parish Communities and Rites of Mortality
Circumcisions of the Heart Church Courts Social Relations and Religious Conflict 15911620
A Circle of Order The Politics of Religious Symbolism 16311640
To Unchurch a Church Civil War and Revolution 16421660
Astraea Redux Religious Conflict Restoration and the Parish 16601665