Faith in, with and under Gordon Brown: A Scottish Presbyterian/Calvinist Reflection

in International Journal of Public Theology
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Abstract

Profiles of the UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown repeatedly characterize him by means of the terms 'Presbyterian' and 'Calvinist'. This article explores the cultural and theological background to how such terms are habitually used within the British media and offers a critical reflection, based on Brown's speeches, as to how religious terms, themes and identifications are in play in his public and political discourse. It identifies two dominant themes in Brown's recent public discourse: 'narrating Britishness' and 'the moral sense'. In reflection on these, the article suggests that Brown is intellectually estranged from Calvinist and Presbyterian theological traditions, defining his faith as 'a private matter' and rooting his moral sense in the traditions of the British and Scottish Enlightenments.

Faith in, with and under Gordon Brown: A Scottish Presbyterian/Calvinist Reflection

in International Journal of Public Theology

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