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The Church of England and same sex marriage: beyond a rights-based analysis

Smith, C. ORCID: (2019) The Church of England and same sex marriage: beyond a rights-based analysis. Ecclesiastical Law Journal, 21 (2). pp. 153-178. ISSN 0956-618X

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1017/S0956618X19000048


Some scholars, faced with the apparent conflict between the Church of England’s teaching on marriage and the idea of equal marriage embraced by the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013, have focussed on the implications of that Act for the constitutional relationship between church, state and nation. More frequently, academics have, noting the position of the Church of England under that Act, critiqued the legislation as an exercise in balancing competing human rights. This article by contrast, leaving behind a tendency to treat religion as a monolithic ‘other’, and leaving behind the neat binaries of rights-based analyses, interrogates the internal agonies of the Church of England as it has striven to negotiate an institutional response to the secular legalisation of same sex marriage. It explores the struggles of the Church to do so in a manner which holds in balance a wide array of doctrinal positions and the demands of mission, pastoral care and the continued apostolic identity of the Church of England.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Law
ID Code:81896
Publisher:Cambridge University Press


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