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Durham University

Institute of Advanced Study

Past Events

Annual King Hussein Memorial Lecture in Cultural Dialogue - Religion in the public sphere: a modern dilemma?

1st May 2014, 18:30 to 19:30, Rosemary Cramp theatre, Calman Learning Centre, Durham University, Baroness Maeve Sherlock

Religion in the public sphere: a modern dilemma?

Prayers before parliament sits. Bishops in the House of Lords. Faith schools in the state education system. Does any of this make sense in 2014? And what of our attitudes to the wearing of religious symbols: religious dress in the classroom? Wearing crosses on a check-in desk or in a hospital? In this lecture, Baroness Maeve Sherlock will discuss some of the ways in which religion is visible in modern Britain and reflect on what that tells us about the place of religion in the public sphere today.

This is the fifth Annual King Hussein Memorial Lecture in Cultural Dialogue and we are honoured that the guest speaker will be Baroness Maeve Sherlock. Baroness Sherlock is a life peer and Opposition spokesperson on Work & Pensions in the House of Lords. She is an officer of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Poverty and for 7 months served as the Labour nominee on the Riots Communities and Victims Panel set up by the Prime Minister in the wake of the 2011 riots in England. Before entering the Lords in 2010, she spent most of her career leading charities, most recently the Refugee Council. She also spent three years in HM Treasury as a special adviser to Gordon Brown when he was Chancellor of the Exchequer. Baroness Sherlock has held a number of non-executive roles including having served as a Commissioner of the Equality and Human Rights Commission. She is a former President of the National Union of Students. Baroness Sherlock came to Durham (where she now lives) to take an MA in the Theology department and moved on to doctoral research looking at church and state through the lens of church schools.

Booking Details
Booking is essential for this event. If you would like to attend please confirm your attendance and that of any guest you wish to bring, with Judith Aird at Event Durham by either email ( or by telephoning 0191 334 2884. Alternatively register online at:

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