The Making of a Tory Evangelical
As one of Victorian Britain's pre-eminent social reformers, Lord Shaftesbury (1801-85) exerted a lasting impact surpassing all of his parliamentary contemporaries. Despite being born into one of England's aristocratic families, a combination of early childhood deprivation, an earnest Evangelical faith, and an abiding sense of noblesse oblige made him a champion of the poor. His seminal contribution to the Victorian factory reform movement represented just one of his manifold legacies. This contextual study of the Seventh Earl of Shaftesbury probes the mind behind the man to evaluate the religious and philosophical ideas, and their leading figures, that ignited his lifelong activism in the public sphere. This book reveals that far from representing a relic of the Victorian age, the Earl of Shaftesbury, whilst a conservative by predilection, was essentially a forward-looking and farsighted reformer. The principles that Shaftesbury espoused of industrial justice, class harmony, subsidiarity, volunteerism, selfless individualism, religious observance, strong families and private enterprise tempered by moderate state intervention are essentially those prized by liberal democracies today as the foundation for social cohesion, prosperity, and human flourishing. ""Furse-Roberts has produced a significant study of the Seventh Earl of Shaftesbury, the greatest British Christian philanthropist and social activist of the nineteenth century--giving particular attention to the two traditions of Tory paternalism and Christian evangelicalism within the larger context of Romanticism. The book brings fresh insights to our understanding of nineteenth-century British culture, as well as enriching our understanding of the life and work of this fascinating figure."" --Stewart J. Brown, Professor of Ecclesiastical History, University of Edinburgh ""This is an important and welcome book offering a valuable reassessment of one of the nineteenth century's leading social reformers. David Furse-Roberts provides a subtle and nuanced study of Shaftesbury's evolving intellectual make-up. Placing Shaftesbury at the intersections of Tory political thought, paternalism, and Evangelicalism, this book advances not only our understanding of Shaftesbury himself but important elements of a wider Victorian mindset."" --Professor David Brown, Professor of Modern History, University of Southampton ""David Furse-Roberts has written the first biography of Lord Shaftesbury, the great Victorian social reformer, to explain the motivating power of his vision of the future, a form of eschatology usually labeled historicist premillennialism. This version of Evangelical belief blended with the paternalism that came naturally to a Tory peer to produce Shaftesbury's dynamic commitment to helping the vulnerable in nineteenth-century Britain."" --David Bebbington, Professor of History, University of Stirling ""No less a person than that great defender of freedom, Winston Churchill, warned that failure to pass on the story of our culture to our children--its religion, its heroes--leaves them vulnerable to Karl Marx's dictum that a people who do not know their history are easily persuaded. David Furse-Roberts is striking an important blow for freedom by ensuring that we can better understand the heroes who enhanced our humanity, and this history of the remarkable Lord Shaftesbury deserves wide readership."" --John Anderson, Former Deputy Prime Minister of Australia, 1999-2005 David Furse-Roberts is a Research Fellow at the Menzies Research Centre and an Adjunct Research Fellow at the Australian Centre for Christianity and Culture at St Mark's National Theological Centre.
- Hardback | 344 pages
- 152 x 229 x 21mm | 626g
- 08 Mar 2019
- Pickwick Publications