The Quakers are a fascinating religious group both in their origins and in the variety of reinterpretations of the faith since. Emerging from the social unrest of the English civil war, the Quakers have gone on to have an influence way beyond their numbers: be it their continued stance against war or their pioneering work against slavery. At the same time, Quakers maintain a distinctive worship method to achieve the direct encounter with God which has been at the heart of the movement since its beginning. This book charts the history of Quakerism and its present-day diversity, and outlines its approach to worship, belief, theology and language, and ecumenism. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.