David Benjamin Rees

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David Benjamin Rees (born Llanddewi Brefi), widely known as "Dr D. Ben Rees", is a Welsh and English-language publisher, author, lecturer and minister in the Presbyterian Church of Wales since 1962 and leader of the Welsh community in Liverpool.[1] He leads one of Liverpool's five remaining Welsh chapels.[2] His small publishing house, Modern Welsh Publications Ltd, was established in 1963 and from 1963 to 1968 it operated from Abercynon in the Cynon Valley of South Wales. Since 1968 it has operated from Allerton, Liverpool[3] and is the only Welsh language publishing house still operating in the city of Liverpool.

Literary work[edit]

In a forty-year span as a writer Rees has worked largely in four areas:

Peace and pacifism[edit]

The biography Mahatma Gandhi: Pensaer yr India (Mahatma Gandhi: The Architect of India) was published in 1970. In a review in the monthly magazine Barn the Reverend Alwyn Roberts praised the title for bringing the contribution of Gandhi to a new generation of readers. This volume was the inspiration for a series of three books on Welsh pacifists. Each volume included a portrayal of the peace initiatives of well-known peace workers by academics and authors under the titles Herio'r Byd (1980), Dal i Herio'r Byd (1983) and Dal Ati i Herio'r Byd (1988), all edited by D. Ben Rees.[4]

Welsh culture[edit]

The author has written a number of books in English and Welsh on writers.

1) Wales: Culture Heritage (1982) is a popular introduction to the Welsh press and the eisteddfodic tradition, and seeks to define the contents of Welsh culture.

2) Samuel Roberts (1987), a biography of the prolific Victorian author Samuel Roberts of Llanbrynmair. The book was published in English by the University of Wales Press as part of the Writers of Wales series, under the editorship of Dr Meic Stephens and Dr R. Brinley Jones.

3) 12 further volumes between 1975 and 2006, addressing Welsh Nonconformity, Victorian Studies and the history of the Liverpool Welsh community. -- History of the Liverpool Welsh Community Rees is acknowledged as the leading authority on the Liverpool Welsh History since 1984 when he and Professor R.Merfyn Jones co-authored The Liverpool Welsh and their Religion.His latest book was based on Ellesmere Port Welsh community ( 2012).

Theology[edit]

Rees has become an acknowledged scholar on John Calvin (1509-1564) and of Calvinism since the publication of four books, three in the Welsh Language,on John Calvin and his Welsh Disciples in the period 2008 and 2012. He delivered the prestigious Davies Lecture on John Calvin and the Connexion at the General Assembly of his denomination in Lampeter in 2008. This has been subsequently published as Y Gwron o Genefa: John Calfin a'i ddylanwad (Caernarfon,2012).

References[edit]