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William Wilberforce, the politician, and religious writer was instrumental in the abolition of slavery in Britain. This course explores Wilberforce’s career and writings and assesses their historical significance. In particular, it examines the contribution that Evangelicalism, the religious tradition to which Wilberforce belonged, made in the transitions between the Enlightenment and Romanticism. Throughout it relates Wilberforce’s career and writings to wider social and cultural developments in Britain, with special regard for British reaction to the French Revolution.

Course learning outcomes

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • Understand the key aspects of William Wilberforce’s political career and writings, and have an appreciation of their historical and religious significance
  • Demonstrate an awareness of the relationship of Evangelicalism to cultural transitions between the Enlightenment and Romanticism
  • Understand the contribution of religion to cultural, social, and political change in Britain in the years after the French Revolution.

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