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Religion in Prison
'Equal Rites' in a Multi-Faith Society


  • Date Published: October 2005
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521021531

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About the Authors
  • This was the first in-depth examination of relations between the Church of England and other faiths in the Prison Service Chaplaincy. It shows how the struggle for equal opportunities in a multi-faith society is politicising relations between the Church, the state and religious minorities. Drawing on a wealth of data, it considers the increasingly controversial role of Anglican chaplains in facilitating the religious and pastoral care of prisoners from non-Christian backgrounds, whose numbers among the prison population have been growing. Comparison with the United States underlines the closeness of the tie between the state and Christian churches in English prisons, and this book argues that it is time to reconsider the practice of keeping ethnic and religious minorities dependent on Anglican 'brokering' of their access to prison chaplaincy.

    • First book-length study of religion in UK prisons
    • Highlights close relation between religion and politics in UK, and draws useful contrast with USA
    • Raises important questions about truth of equal opportunities in multi-faith society
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This important and unique book contains a fascinating combination of dispassionate and moral indignation … I would be surprised if this book does not precipitate overdue change.' Robin Gill, University of Kent at Canterbury

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    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2005
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521021531
    • length: 248 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 150 x 15 mm
    • weight: 0.381kg
    • contains: 11 tables
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. Equal opportunities and multiculturalism in prisons
    2. Chaplaincy, chaplains, chapels and other faiths
    3. Church of England prison chaplains
    4. Visiting ministers of other faiths
    5. 'Facilitation' or 'dependence'?
    6. Inclusion and exclusion
    7. US prison chaplaincy
    8. Conclusions: state, church and diversity.

  • Authors

    James A. Beckford, University of Warwick

    Sophie Gilliat, Cardiff University

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