Skip to content
Menu

Professor Stephen G Parker

Professor of the History of Religion and Education

Institute of Education

Contact Details

email: s.parker@worc.ac.uk

tel: 01905 542165

Stephen joined the Institute of Education at Worcester in 2008, becoming Professor of the History of Religion and Education in 2013. Since publishing his PhD thesis as Faith on the Home Front in 2005, Stephen has gone on to develop particular expertise in the histories of both religion and education and their interface, particularly across the twentieth century.

 

Awarded a prestigious Research Project Grant by the Leverhulme Trust, for a project entitled Faith on the Air: religious educational broadcasting history, c.1920-, Stephen will be leading detailed research on this for a period of three years (2014-17).

 

In his on-going work, Stephen is a leading contributor to developing perspectives on the history of religious education (with Dr Rob Freathy of the University of Exeter), particular focused upon the1960s and 1970s.

 

Stephen’s work at the University of Worcester utilises this research in various ways: directly, through teaching across courses on issues in religion and education, but also in developing critical and historical perspectives upon education policy and practice. He is keen that the histories of religion and education should be studied in their own right, but is committed to demonstrating how history may inform the present.

 

Since 2008 Stephen has been engaged in a number of funded research projects investigating:

  • The Hidden History of Curriculum Change in Religious Education in English schools, 1969-1979 (funded by the British Academy in collaboration with the University of Exeter)
  • The Hidden History of Religious Education: The Life-Histories of R.E. Professionals in the Midlands from the long 1960s to the 1980s (funded by the Westhill Trust in collaboration with the University of Exeter).
  • The impact of A-level Religious Studies on the values and outlook of 16-19 year olds (funded by the St. Gabriel’s and the St Peter’s Saltley Trusts in collaboration with the University of Warwick Religions and Education Research Unit)

 

In June 2013, Stephen led a successful seminar, sponsored by the St. Peter’s Saltley Trust, on the future of Religious Education. This was a research-informed event with invited keynote speaker who addressed national and international perspectives on issues in religious education with a view to mapping a future for the subject in schools.

 

Stephen has recently authored and co-edited two volumes:

God and War and Religious Education and Freedom of Religion and Belief

 
Since 2009, Stephen has been an Associate Fellow of the Warwick Religions and Education Research Unit working collaboratively with Professor Leslie Francis, the Director of the Unit. 

 

Academic Qualifications:

PhD (Birmingham)
PGCert (Teaching and Learning in Higher Education) (Liverpool)
MA (Birmingham)
B.Ed (Hons) Religious and Theological Studies and Education (Birmingham)

 
Stephen's blog can be found at http://religiohistored.wordpress.com/

Teaching & Supervision

Teaching & Supervision

Stephen is Research Degrees Coordinator for the Institute of Education, with responsibility for oversight of all doctoral programmes.

Additionally he is Pathway Lead for the MA Education (Religions and Values)

For the academic year, 2013/14 Stephen is scheduled to teach:

PRDC8001 The Researching Professional
MEDD4070 Current Issues in Religious Education

 

Professor Parker is currently supervising the following MPhil/PhD students:

Branwen Bingle – Children’s literature and the idea of the teacher (part-time)

Jody Crutchley – The British empire and education curriculum in Elementary Schools (full-time)

Elizabeth Newton – A teachers’ history of Religious Education (full-time)

Rachael Shillitoe – Broadcast collective worship for children (full-time) (Leverhulme Trust-funded)

Marie Stephenson – Ethical leadership in the not-for-profit sector (part-time)

Professor Parker would be pleased to receive enquiries about supervision on any aspect of the history of religion and education; religion, education and society; and the application of historical methodologies to contemporary issues in education and religion.

Professional Bodies

Professional Bodies

Fellow of the Royal Historical Society (FRHistS)

Fellow of the Royal Society for Arts (FRSA)

Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA)

Member of the International Seminar on Religious Education and Values

Member of Association of University Lecturers in Religious Education

Member of the History of Education Society, UK

Member of the Philosophy of Education Society of Great Britain

Member of Ecclesiastical History Society

Member of the Church of England Record Society.

Publications

Publications

Books:

Parker, S.G. Freathy, R.J.K., Francis, L.J. (2014) History, Remembrance and Religious Education. Oxford: Peter Lang.

Parker, S.G., Lawson, T. (2012) God and War: the Church of England and Armed Conflict in the Twentieth-century. Aldershot: Ashgate.

Parker, S.G., Freathy R.J.K., Francis, L.J. (2012). Religious Education and Freedom of Religion and Belief. Bern: Peter Lang.

Campbell, W.S., Parker, S.G. (2011). Faith in Education. Journal of Beliefs and Values , 32: 2.

Parker, S.G. (2006). Faith on the Home Front: Aspects of Church Life and Popular Religion in Birmingham, 1939 – 1945. Bern: Peter Lang.

Book Chapters:

Parker, S.G., Freathy, R.J.K., Doney, J (in press) Raiders of the Lost Archive: methodological reflections on the hidden history of Religious Education in English schools. In Parker, S.G. Freathy, R.J.K., Francis, L.J. History, Remembrance and Religious Education. Oxford: Peter Lang.

Parker, S.G., Freathy, R.J.K., Doney, J. (in press) The English Movement for Christian Education and its Journals, c.1920 to 1970. In Schroeder, B (ed) (in press) Institutionalization and profile of RE: selected European case studies. Germany: Mohr Siebeck.

Freathy, R.J.K., Parker, S.G. (2012) Freedom from Religious Beliefs: Humanists and Religious Education in England in the 1960s and 70s. In Parker, S.G. and Freathy R.J.K. (eds) Religious Education and Freedom of Religion and Belief. Bern: Peter Lang.

Parker, S., Freathy, R., Francis, L.J. (2012). Introduction in Parker S, Freathy R.,Francis L.J. (eds.) Religious Education and Freedom of Religion and Belief, Oxford: Peter Lang, 1-3.

Lawson, T., Parker, S.G. (2012) God and War: a century in the politics of religion. In Parker, S.G. and Lawson, T. (eds). God and War: the Church of England and Armed Conflict in the Twentieth-century. Aldershot: Ashgate.

Parker, S.G. (2012) Reinvigorating Christian Britain: the spiritual opportunities of the war, national identity, and the hope of Religious Education. In Parker, S.G. and Lawson, T. (eds) God and War: the Church of England and Armed Conflict in the Twentieth-century. Aldershot: Ashgate.

Snape, M. F., Parker, S.G. (2001) Keeping Faith and Coping: belief, popular religiosity and the British people. In Liddle, P., Bourne, J. and Whitehead, I. (eds.) (2001) The Great World War (Volume 2): the people’s experience. London: Harper Collins.

Journal articles:

Freathy, R.J.K., Parker, S.G. (2013) ‘Secularists, Humanists and religious education: religious crisis and curriculum change, 1963-1975’, History of Education: journal of the History of Education Society, 42: 2, 222—256. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/0046760X.2012.761733

Parker, S.G., Freathy, R.J.K. (2012) ‘Ethnic diversity, Christian hegemony and the emergence of multi-faith religious education in the 1970s’, History of Education: journal of the History of Education Society, 41: 3, 381–404. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/0046760X.2011.620013

Parker, S.G., Freathy, R.J.K. (2011) ‘Context, Complexity and Contestation: Birmingham’s Agreed Syllabuses since the 1960s’, Journal of Beliefs and Values, 32: 2, 247 – 263. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13617672.2011.600823

Freathy, R.J.K., Parker, S.G. (2010) ‘The necessity of historical inquiry in educational research: the case of religious education’, British Journal of Religious Education, 32: 3, 229 – 243. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/01416200.2010.498612

Parker, S. G. (2010) ‘'Teach them to pray Auntie’: Children's Hour Prayers at the BBC, 1940-1961'’, History of Education: journal of the History of Education Society, Vol. 39: 5, 659-676. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00467601003685741

Parker, S.G. (2009b) ‘Theorizing sacred space in educational contexts: a case study of three English Midlands Sixth Form Colleges’, Journal of Beliefs and Values, 30:1, 29-39. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13617670902784527

Parker, S.G. (2009a) ‘‘Blessed are the pacifists’: E.W. Barnes of Birmingham and Pacifism, 1914-1945’, Midland History, Vol. 34: 2, 204–219. http://dx.doi.org/10.1179/175638109X417369

Recently Published Book Reviews:

Worsley, H. (ed) (2013) Anglican Church School Education: moving beyond the first two hundred years. London: Bloomsbury. British Journal of Religious Education, published online January 2014, DOI:10.1080/01416200.2013.872877

Beaken, R. (2012). Cosmo Lang: Archbishop in War and Crisis. London: IB Tauris. At http://www.cercles.com/review/r66/Beaken.html#_ftn1, May 2013.

Revell, L. (2012) Islam and Education: the manipulation and misrepresentation of a religion Stoke-on-Trent: Trentham Books, Journal of Beliefs and Values, 34, 1, 2013, pp.125-127.

Green, S.J.D (2011). The Passing of Protestant England: secularisation and social change, c. 1920-1960. Cambridge: CUP in the Journal of British Studies, vol. 51, 3, 2012, pp.769-770.

King, Ursula (2009) The Search for Spirituality: our global quest for meaning and fulfilment, Norwich: Canterbury Press at: http://www.shapworkingparty.org.uk/reviews.html published February, 2010.

Shapiro, Joan Poliner and Gross, Steven Jay (2007) Ethical Educational Leadership in Turbulent Times (Re-solving Moral Dilemmas). London: Routledge at: http://escalate.ac.uk/5018 published April 2010.

Other articles:
Stephen Parker, ‘Wakefield, Henry Russell (1854-1933)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press

Stephen Parker, ‘Woods, Edward Sydney (1877-1953)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press

Life After Death and Personhood, Dialogue: A Journal of Religion and Philosophy, Issue 29: November 2007

Reports:

First Thoughts on Spirituality in the Sixth Form College, Farmington Fellowship Report, 2008. See: http://www.farmington.ac.uk/documents/reports/framed/phil_spir.html

Conference Papers:

Religious Education, the Church of England, and Church-State Relations, 1965-1970 and George Hamilton Archibald, Gender, and the Professionalization of Sunday-school teaching, History of Education Society, Going Un-Christian’? University of Exeter, November 2013.

School Worship, John G. Williams and the idea of childhood piety at the BBC, Boston, Religious Education Association, November 2013.

School Worship, John G. Williams and the Idea of Childhood Piety at the BBC, International Association for Media History, July 2013.

J.G. Williams, School Worship and the Idea of Childhood Piety at the BBC, Institute for Historical Research, June 2013.

The Aussie and the Schoolmistress: reforming RE and contesting English religious identity in the long 1960s, History of Education Society: rulers, rebels and reformers, November 2012.

The Christian Education Movement, 1964-1980 and Religious Education and the Mary Whitehouse Experience, International Seminar on Religious Education and Values, Turku Finland, July 2012.

External Responsibilities

External Responsibilities

Stephen is Assistant Editor and Reviews Editor of the Journal of Beliefs and Values and a member of the Executive Committee of the History of Education Society.

Professor Parker is also:

Member of the Editorial Board of Practical Theology

Lead Series Editor: Religion, Education and Values, Peter Lang AG.

Volumes published thus far:

Vol. 1 Teaching Religion, Teaching Truth: theoretical and empirical perspectives
Vol. 2 Religious Education and Freedom of Religion and Belief
Vol. 3 Fragmented Catholicity and Social Cohesion: faith schools in a plural society
Vol. 4 Swimming Against the Tide: the new independent Christian schools and their teenage pupils
Vol. 5 Women, Cosmopolitanism and Islamic Education: on the virtues of engagement and belonging

External Examiner: MPhil/PhD and EdD

External Examiner: MA Education at Brunel University.

Associate Lecturer: MA Religious Studies, the Open University