Joseph Houldsworth Oldham : his thought and its development
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This thesis will trace the development of the thought of Joseph Houldsworth Oldham. The thesis will describe the development of the thought of one of the fathers of the modern ecumenical movement. A review of the theses written in Great Britain and North America since the Second World War reveals no study of Oldham’s thought. Although biographies have been written about most of Oldham’s contemporaries in the modern ecumenical movement – Mott, Brent, Söderblom, Temple, Paton – no biography has been written about Oldham. Therefore the necessity of this thesis is to tell the untold story of Joseph Houldsworth Oldham: His Thought and Its Development. The author has selected Oldham’s published works as the basis of this study. Oldham’s unpublished papers and correspondence – much of it now gathered in boxes at Edinburgh House in London and at the World Council of Churches in Geneva – are not discussed in this thesis. This body of unpublished material could provide the basis for another study on Oldham. The author planned originally to tell the story of the thought and the life of J.H. Oldham. This intention shortly proved to be beyond the bounds of one thesis. This thesis does not, therefore, discuss in detail the story of Oldham’s life. Information about his life has generally been placed in the footnotes where it forms the setting for the development of his thought. Oldham published prolifically from 1898 to 1963. The volume and variety of his writings during this sixty-five year period was not, however, immediately apparent to the author. Although the catalogue of the British Museum lists Oldham’s books and a few of his pamphlets, it scarcely hints at his total output. Part of the task of this thesis, therefore, was the compilation of a bibliography of Oldham’s published works.
Thesis, PhD Doctor of Philosophy
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