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Title: Faith, dialogue and difference in English Christian community work : learning “good practice”?
Author: Orton, Andrew
ISNI:       0000 0004 2685 1444
Awarding Body: Durham University
Current Institution: Durham University
Date of Award: 2008
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This thesis examines the impact of difference within English Christian community work practice, setting this work in the context of broader debates over the relationship between faith, politics, identity and practice. Several dimensions of difference are considered, including difference as diversity of practice, difference as contestation of practice, and difference as 'the other'. A multi-stage research design is employed to study these dimensions of difference further, based on analysing usage of the concept of 'good practice'. This concept is found to be continually defined, re-defined, applied into particular situations and contested through everyday interpretations, interactions and processes. The complexity of interests, relationships and structures at different levels are explored through consecutive case studies, highlighting both individual and organisational dynamics. An analysis of the data highlights several areas where current understandings and applications are creating counter-productive tendencies and dilemmas for all those involved. Questions of identity, purpose and learning are all found to be central to understanding and addressing these difficulties. Finally, a refined model of Christian community work is proposed that is based on informal education. This model begins to resolve these difficulties, thus helping to develop an improved understanding of this work to inform policy and practice.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available