What We Talk about when We Talk about Faith
By Peter Stanford
Interviews with people of faith including Sara Maitland | Sister Wendy Beckett | Delia Smith | The Revd Richard Coles | Dermot O'Leary | Cherie Blair | Archbishop Desmond Tutu | Bronwen Astor | Amos Oz | Nick Cave
Peter Stanford has been interviewing people of faith during his thirty-five years as a journalist at national papers including the Daily Telegraph, the Independent and The Guardian, as well as for the church press. What fascinates him in such conversations is how creating a space to talk unguardedly about faith unlocks so much more: what shaped and continues to shape the public and private lives of high-profile names; how those values connect with the work they are best known for; and why they believe the search for faith makes them who they are.
This collection of the best of his interviews - some with household names, others with those not so immediately familiar, but all people of achievement with a resonant story to tell - aims to lift the lid on a topic that has become increasingly marginalised in the public square of our increasingly secular and sceptical society, where to 'do God' can feel like breaking a taboo. Put together, the 44 subjects collectively demonstrate that, rather than being all about doctrine and dogma, there are as many ways of exploring faith as there are individuals currently doing it.
These intriguing interviews with activists, writers and artists, politicians, rebels and those who have taken vows will appeal to committed believers, those on the fringes of faith, and those who look in from the outside with curiosity.
Includes interviews with Sara Maitland | Sister Wendy Beckett | Delia Smith | The Revd Richard Coles | Dermot O'Leary | Cherie Blair | Archbishop Desmond Tutu | Bronwen Astor | Amos Oz | Nick Cave
Peter Stanford's previous investigations into the history, theology, enduring appeal and cultural significance of religious ideas include Martin Luther: Catholic Dissident; Judas: The Troubling History of the Renegade Apostle; The Devil - A Biography; Heaven - A Traveller's Guide to the Undiscovered Country; and The She-Pope, an investigation of the Pope Joan legend. His other books include biographies of Bronwen Astor, Lord Longford and the Poet Laureate, C Day-Lewis, plus the polemical Catholics and Sex that became an award-winning Channel 4 series in 1992. He is a senior features writer at the Daily and Sunday Telegraph titles, and contributes to the Independent, the Observer, the Daily Mail and the Catholic weekly, the Tablet, where he is a columnist. He has presented programmes on BBC 1, Channel 4 and Channel 5, as well as BBC Radios 2 and 4 and the BBC World Service.
- Other details
- Publication date:
07 Feb 2019
- Page count:
Hodder & Stoughton
Stanford has given us a collection of brief and varied insights into the struggle of being a believer today... The reader can dip into these pages to savour now one interview, now another... to see which resonates most. As Stanford explores motivations, examines habits and exposes doubts, I found myself mourning the passing of religion as a publicly recognised resource that everyone can draw on, to build a better family, a better country and a better world. — Christina Odone, The Catholic Herald
A fascinating and well-produced collection of conversations about faith... not simply an invitation to voyeurism, but the opportunity to reflect deeply upon our own faith... A really good book to read and reflect upon. — Methodist Recorder
With this book, Stanford inspires us to explore our own individual faith, finding the ways to practice our beliefs that work best for our lives and our needs. — Irish Catholic
The book mercifully avoids the temptation to be pious and overly-confessional. Laid bare are real struggles people have to believe...Stanford captures the fact that, for people of faith, their religion is just part and parcel of who they are rather than something they constantly think about...There is food for thought and fascinating insights into a side of life that people rarely talk about publicly. — Irish Independent