This thesis provides a comprehensive analysis of spiritual healing in England in its various different guises during the late-nineteenth and early- to mid-twentieth centuries. It considers the interplay between the various spiritual healing groups themselves and between their philosophies and practices and orthodox medical theory more generally. The first half examines how spiritual healing was conceptualised by those who practised it - who spiritual healers were, what they believed and how they defined illness and healing. The specific therapeutic techniques used by healers are delineated, and the themes of touch and morality explored in detail. The second half of this thesis then examines how spiritual healing was perceived by the religious and medical establishments, and explores their co-operational discourse. Firstly, the reaction of the orthodox Christian churches to spiritual healing and their fractured and inherently conservative attempts to utilise it as a means of revitalising orthodox Christianity are analysed. The final chapters then chart the chronological relationship between spiritual healing and orthodox medicine during three specific periods, and explore the way in which spiritual healing intersected and impacted upon medical reactions to the new psychology of the twentieth century
To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.