chapter  3
14 Pages

Grace Davie and Religious Literacy

Undoing a Lamentable Quality of Conversation
WithAdam Dinham

Davie quietly cautions against over-extending distinctions, and over-operationalizing the ideas, despite the temptations to both. Accompanying this insistence on perspective and nuance, Davie also demonstrates a deep commitment to the real and the ordinary. Davie adds another crucial layer, encapsulating the institutionalization of religious illiteracy in policy-making contexts. Davie reminds us, however, that we must get the reality in to perspective. Davie helps bring this down to earth in at least three key arenas. Davie notes that religion has an increasing presence in welfare, mainly due to a lack of money coupled with increased demand. Alongside, Davie draws attention to public anxiety about whether or not it is appropriate for religion to be involved in welfare. Again, Davie has picked this up 'off the page' in support of recent work with the Religious Literacy Programme on a new large-scale research project on religious literacy in health and social care.