Quaker Studies September 2008
Vol 13/1 – 01/09/2008
Desc: This is an unusual issue of Quaker Studies. It is dominated by one article three or four times the length of our normal submissions. One other article sits alongside two research notes and a selection of book reviews.
The length of the issue is the now-standard maximum of 128 pages. The lengthy study, by Nikki Coffey Tousley, is actually a reprint of her M.Phil thesis, submitted for that award at the University of Birmingham some five years ago. For those who have read it, it is a treasure of analysis. Its acute analysis of the changes between first- and second-generation convincement narratives add detail and nuance to the generalised and received wisdom of shifts which took place between first and second-generation convincement narratives add detail and nuance to the generalised and received wisdom of shifts which took place between the 1650s and 1670s. Rosemary Moore's follow-up research into the 1670s after her painstaking account of the 1650s is in a similar vein but is still in progress. This is a very significant piece of research beautifully crafted and yet has been largely inaccessible, hence the decision to publish it here.
Two research notes all cover very different territory. Yasuharu Nakano contextualises the theology of Elizabeth Bathurst, one of the few systematic theologians Quakerism has produced, delineating her soteriology from that of her contemporary Robert Barclay. He also catalogues 29 errors in scriptural citations across seven editions of her work including the recent republication of some of it in Hidden in Plain Sight. Yasuharu Nakano attempts to explain some of these errors and their persistence but also calls us, as scholars, to greater care and attention in checking our transcriptions.
Simon Best raises a methodological issue for those studying sub-cultures or alternative forms that reside within larger populations, in this case adolescent Quakers within Britain Yearly Meeting. He shows how different narratives of inclusivity and difference run differently through the different constituencies and that these can be hidden by privileging only one or some accounts.
The issue ends as usual with a selection of book reviews, edited with usual care by Betty Hagglund. My continuing thanks to her.
'Ben' Pink Danelion