Bread of Life in Broken Britain
Foodbanks, Faith and Neoliberalism
Available for pre-order. Publication date: 30/04/2020.
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The return of Christian social service to the centre of British political life through the emergence of the foodbank movement has elicited a range of ecclesial responses. However, in their urgency and brevity these Church responses fail to systematically integrate political critique and social analysis, nor do they undertake a sustained integration of the recent gains in political theology with the realities of our current 'mixed economy of welfare'.
Charles Pemberton draws on interviews with foodbank users and volunteers to defend and advance a Christian vision of welfare beyond emergency food provision. He suggests that behind the day-to-day struggles of those using foodbanks there are wider much concerns about loneliness, marginalisation and the wholesale fragmentation of society.
"Foodbanks have become a complex part of the social, cultural and political landscape of many nations over the last decade or so. There existence divides opinion as many Christians remain conflicted between their duty to serve the poor and the sense of collusion with a system that makes foodbanks necessary in the first place. It is in this context, therefore, that Charles Rodin Pemberton has written an important book. Foodbanks, Faith and Neoliberalism provides a carefully calibrated account of the political and economic terrain that has given rise to Foodbanks and provides constructive resources that will inform the theology and practice all those hoping that they can make a difference." -- Anthony Reddie