God's Politicians: The Christian Contribution to 100 years of Labour

 
9780007100644: God's Politicians: The Christian Contribution to 100 years of Labour

This is a book that tells the story and assesses the impact of Christianity in 100 years of the Labour Party.

Tracing the history of the Labour Party through 100 years since its inception, this book focuses on the pivotal figures whose faith in God has motivated and moulded their politics. Many of these courageous men and women fought against the prevailing attitudes of their day to bring greater dignity to ordinary people through workers’ rights, the women’s suffrage movement, education and health care.

The Christian element in the Labour Party has been strong throughout, but it has sometimes sat uneasily with the philosophy of Marxism, from which Labour has also drawn its principles. This book looks at the dynamism and tensions along the way in a fascinating historical survey.

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From the Back Cover:

''When people say to me that the Bible has nothing to do with politics, I wonder which Bible it is they are referring to.''
DESMOND TUTU

Political revolutions need theory and values, but they also need people. This is the story of the pivotal figures during 100 years of the Labour Party, whose faith in God has motivated and moulded their politics. They have had to challenge assumption not only in Parliament, but also in the Church. They have fought against the prevailing attitudes of the day to bring greater dignity to ordinary people through worker's rights, equal opportunities, education and health care. Although their beliefs have often sat uneasily with the realities of power and the vision of others, they have worked to bring justice to all who live in Britain.

This fascinating historical survey looks at the tensions and dynamics generated by faith in politics. Faith helped Keir Hardie, the leading founder of the Labour party. But it also motivated Philip Snowdon, whose departure with Ramsay MacDonald was a betrayal that nearly destroyed Labour 30 years later. The same principles which inspired Labour leader George Lansbury in his pacifism led Tony Blair into military action in Kosovo. Graham Dale traces how belief in God has sustained the Labour Party's leaders and informed their vision throughout the 20th century and into the 21st.

About the Author:

Graham Dale is Director of the Christian Socialist Movement.

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