Virtual Bookshelf

Browse through our virtual bookshelf, updated with academic staff's most recent publications

Colour image of a two bookshelves on top of one another with a variety of different books published by School of Divinity staff placed on the shelves

Dr Linden Bicket, Emma Dymock, and Professor Alison Jack (eds.) – Scottish Religious Poetry

Published: 2024 (Upcoming)

A comprehensive selection of religious poetry that Scotland has produced over the centuries, including some Gaelic voices and reflecting the mixed religious profile of Scotland today. An earlier edition published in 2000 was a huge success, selling out very quickly. This eagerly awaited follow-up offers the very best from a diverse, often turbulent history and reveals an attractive and distinctive spirituality that is unique to Scotland The poetry spans 15 centuries and includes poets from every corner of Scotland. It reflects the rich range of language across regions and centuries and is a unique collection of the deepest religious thought of a nation. Selected and introduced by three experts in the field, this offers an attractive and informed volume that will appeal to all lovers of Scottish literature.

Dr Bethany Sollereder, Gijsbert van den Brink, and Rik Peels (eds.) – Progress in Theology: Does the Queen of the Sciences Advance?

Published: 10 July 2024

This book explores the intriguing relationship between theology, science, and the ideal of progress from a variety of perspectives. While seriously discussing the obstacles and pitfalls related to the notion of progress in theology, it argues that there are in fact many different kinds of progress in theology. It considers how this sheds positive light on what theologians do and suggests that other disciplines in the humanities can equally profit from these ideas. The chapters provide tools for making further progress in theology, featuring detailed case studies to show how progress in theology works in practice and connecting with the role and place of theology in the University. The book rearticulates in multiple ways theology’s distinctive voice at the interface of science and religion.

Dr Simon Burton – Ramism and the Reformation of Method: The Franciscan Legacy in Early Modernity

Published: 30 April 2024

This book offers the first in-depth discussion of the philosophical and theological presuppositions of the early modern movement of Ramism for more than a generation, arguing for its deep roots in medieval Augustinian and Franciscan thought and charting its uptake in Reformed scholasticism. In doing so, it challenges a widespread narrative associating Reformed Protestantism with disenchantment and the onset of secularism. The work traces a broad arc from Ramus to Comenius, encompassing both Continental and British varieties of Ramism. It examines the nature and formation of Ramism and its subsequent development and transformation through engagement with Philippist, scholastic, Lullist, and federal thought. It shows that at the heart of Ramism, unifying all of its diverse strands, was a Franciscan vision of Christian philosophy and it reveals the connection of Ramism to an eclectic, Scotistic approach to reality embodied in a sophisticated Realism and exemplarism. It considers the development of Ramism as a supernatural logic of faith. It highlights the relation of Ramism to a wider mathematization and systematization of knowledge grounded in the reforms of Nicholas of Cusa and the Fabrists. It thus exposes the deep roots of the early modern encyclopaedia in medieval and Renaissance thought. It finally reveals the presence of an important Edenic paradigm within Ramism, issuing in a Trinitarian and eschatological drive for the universal reform of Church and society.

Professor Rachel Muers, Ashley Cocksworth, David F. Ford (eds.) – Ford's The Modern Theologians: An Introduction to Christian Theology since 1918, 4th Edition

Published: March 2024

Captures the multiple voices of Christian theology in a diverse and interconnected world through in-depth studies of representative figures and overviews of key movements

Providing an unparalleled overview of the subject, The Modern Theologians provides an indispensable guide to the diverse approaches and perspectives within Christian theology from the early twentieth century to the present. Each chapter is written by a leading scholar and explores the development and trajectory of modern theology while presenting critical accounts of a broad range of relevant topics and representative thinkers.

The fourth edition of The Modern Theologians is fully updated to provide readers with a clear picture of the broad spectrum and core concerns of modern Christian theology worldwide. It offers new perspectives on key twentieth-century figures and movements from different geographical and ecclesial contexts. There are expanded sections on theological dialogue with non-Christian traditions, and on Christian theology's engagement with the arts and sciences. A new section explores theological responses to urgent global challenges - such as nationalism, racism, and the environmental crisis.

Providing the next generation of theologians with the tools needed to take theological conversations forward, The Modern Theologians:

  • Explores Christian theology's engagement with multiple ways of knowing across diverse approaches and traditions
  • Combines introductions to key modern theologians and coverage of the major movements within contemporary theology
  • Identifies common dynamics found across theologies to enable cross-contextual comparisons
  • Positions individual theologians in geographical regions, trans-local movements, and ecclesial contexts
  • Features new and revised chapters written by experts in particular movements, topics, and individuals

Providing in-depth critical evaluation and extensive references to further readings and research, Ford's The Modern Theologians: An Introduction to Christian Theology since 1918, Fourth Edition, remains an ideal textbook for undergraduate and graduate courses in Theology and Religious Studies, such as Introduction to Christian Theology, Systematic Theology, Modern Theology, and Modern Theologians.

It is also an invaluable resource for researchers, those involved in various forms of Christian ministry, teachers of religious studies, and general readers engaged in independent study.


Dr Arkotong Longkumer (ed.) – A Path Home: A Graphic Novel on Naga Repatriation

Published: 17 February 2023

A graphic novel on Naga Repatriation.

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Dr Walaa Quisay – Neo-traditionalism in Islam in the West: Orthodoxy, Spirituality and Politics

Published: July 2023

Studies the impact neo-traditionalism has on the religious and political subjectivities of Muslims in the West

  • Shows the importance of neo-traditionalism in the changing conceptions of religious orthodoxy, religious authority and spirituality for young Muslims in the West

  • Studies primarily – although not exclusively – three neo-traditionalist shaykhs: Hamza Yusuf, Abdal Hakim Murad and Umar Faruq Abd-Allah
  • Analyses how neo-traditionalist shaykhs construct the notion of ‘tradition’ concerning what they perceive to have been lost in modernity
  • Examines the political implications to their critiques of modernity – as it pertains to political quietism, race and gender

Examining Muslim neo-traditionalist scholars in the West and their community of young seekers of sacred knowledge, Walaa Quisay explores the emerging trend within Anglo-American Islam that emphasises the importance of ‘tradition’. This book focuses on spiritual retreats hosted by three main shaykhs – Hamza Yusuf, Abdal Hakim Murad and Umar Faruq Abd-Allah – to examine how religious authority is formed and affirmed.

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James Eglinton, Cory Brock, and Nathaniel Gray Sutanto (eds. and trs.), Herman Bavinck – Christianity and Science

Published: 29 August 2024

This Companion to Theologian Herman Bavinck’s Christian Worldview Explores Christianity’s Contributions to Higher Education

After writing his well-known book Christian Worldview, Dutch Calvinist theologian and scholar Herman Bavinck focused his attention on how the Christian faith benefits higher learning, particularly religious studies, natural sciences, and the humanities.

Christianity and Science explores the pros and cons of Christian science and features brief, informative sections on the natural sciences, the humanities, theological science and religious studies, the doctrine of revelation, the benefits of Christianity for scholarship, and what it means to develop a Christian university. Responding to the challenges of the modern age, Bavinck recognizes the significance of faith in education. Edited and translated in English for the first time by N. Gray Sutanto, James Eglinton, and Cory C. Brock, this fundamental work will inspire Christian teachers, practitioners, and seminarians in their pursuits. 

  • Foundational Text on Christian Education: Analyzes how faith shapes various disciplines of higher education, with a section highlighting the construction of the Free University of Amsterdam in 1880
  • Comprehensive: Each short section is packed with important information on the natural sciences, the humanities, and more
  • Ideal for Educators, Students, and Practitioners: Considers holistic ways to teach future generations in a world that’s resistant to Christianity
  • Companion to Bavinck’s Book Christian Worldview

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Dr Joshua Ralston and Klaus von Stosch (eds.) – Beyond Binaries: Religious Diversity in Europe

Published: September 2023

In Europe religion and the secular are often depicted as inherently opposed to one another, with religions often considered to be only relevant to private affairs and personal beliefs. In contrast, the public sphere is understood as a secular and rational place where religious influence must be curtailed. In this binary perspective, Islam is viewed as misunderstanding the nature of religion and the secular because it seeks to enter the public space and does not properly accept the separation of religion and state. By contrast, Europe is associated with political secularism and it is presumed to be both secular and Judeo-Christian. This leaves other religious traditions, especially Islam and Muslims, as outside the dominant vision of Europe. The book brings authors together who share a vision of Europe beyond these binaries. It shows paths to a fruitful encounter of religion and secularities in Europe on the one hand and of Judaism, Christianity and Islam on the other.

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Dr Shadaab Rahemtulla (ed.) – The Future of Islamic Liberation Theology

Published: September 2023

Islamic liberation theology (ILT) refers to a diverse cluster of theologies that seek to reinterpret Islamic texts in the light of oppression and resistance to it. Based on a commitment to social justice, ILT shifts theological understanding away from the privileged center(s) of society, shifting the interlocutor, the conversation partner of theology to the neglected margins. Over the past few decades, a rich body of Islamic scholarship has emerged that has grappled with a variety of categories and frameworks, most notably gender and religious pluralism. The purpose of this Special Issue is to identify new directions in ILT by engaging the following questions: What is the current state of the field? What are the key contexts, problems, and thematic areas on which ILT has focused, and why have scholars prioritized these issues? How have establishment religion and its hierarchies of power and authority been deconstructed, and how have liberationist re-readings of religious texts been produced? How has ILT challenged dominant hermeneutical approaches and enabled more inclusive reading methods? To what extent are these alternative methods problematic and carry contestable assumptions? Which areas of human experience have received less attention from, or even been ignored altogether, by scholars? In the future, how can proponents of ILT study such thematic areas, unexplored intersectional realities, and changing global contexts, and what would critical theological scholarship in these new research areas look like? This is a non-exhaustive listing of the type of questions that this Special Issue seeks to engage.

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Dr Michael Fuller, Professor Mark Harris, Dr Joanna Leidenhag, and Anne Runehov (eds.) – Issues in Science and Theology: Global Sustainability

Published: 27 October 2023

This volume brings together contributions from the 2022 conference of the European Society for the Study of Science and Theology, held in Ålesund, Norway, to address the many urgent questions raised by the concept of global sustainability. Scholars from the fields of philosophy, theology and the sciences offer a variety of perspectives on global sustainability, and on how the need for it can best be effected and sustained. The material assembled here – covering the roots of the present ecological crisis, as well as means for addressing it from ecological, societal, and both Christian and Islamic theological perspectives – inform discussions of these questions both within the academy and in wider public fora.  This text appeals to students and researchers in the field.

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Dr Patrick McMurray – Seven Origins of Christianity: A Short History from Genesis to the Trinity

Published: 20 November 2023

Let us tread some dusty ancient roads, as walked by the disciples and indeed by Jesus Christ himself. Join biblical scholar and enthusiast Dr Patrick McMurray in a fascinating conversation about the origins of Christianity, within both the Jewish and the ancient Mediterranean worlds. By selecting seven key texts, each of which underpins Christianity as we know it today, “Seven Origins of Christianity” offers a unique combination of historical breadth with depth. These texts, our journey’s stepping stones, furnish readers with the broadest historical panorama, but yet will nonetheless permit us to pause and to dwell upon the juiciest points of curiosity and intrigue. Distilling 100 years of scholarship, this book offers a superb introduction to the historical underpinnings of both theology and of the Christian faith. As such, this absorbing narrative draws together a huge amount of both insight and interest, encapsulating this within just one handy volume.

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Professor Timothy Lim (ed.) – Hebrew Bible and Ancient Israel

Published: 2022

Professor Timothy Lim recently published a guest-edited issue of Hebrew Bible and Ancient Israel (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2022) on the theme of 'The Normativity of the Torah'.  There are articles by John J. Collins on the development and observance of the Torah in the Persian Period; Christopher Rollston on the late attribution of authorship of the Pentateuch to Moses; Sidnie Crawford on the literary strategy of the Temple Scroll that obviates the mediator Moses; and Laura Quick on how Deuteronomy was detextualised in the performative retelling of the Exagoge of Ezekiel the Tragedian.  Professor Lim's own article on Josephus shows that the motivation to rewrite the biblical text is not only due to the authoritative nature of scripture, but also to the perceived defects of the laws and narratives.  Josephus innovated or changed the order of the laws and narrative for historiographical purposes to accommodate what he perceived to have been a better sense of the laws and flow of the events of Jewish history.  The entire volume was coedited by a former New College PhD student in Hebrew Bible, Josiah Peeler (PhD 2022), now assistant professor at Mid-Atlantic Christian University.

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Dr Salam Rassi – Christian Thought in the Medieval Islamicate World

Published: 8 February 2022

  • First book-length history of Syriac and Christian Arabic apologetic literature
  • First intellectual biography of an influential Syriac author
  • An in-depth analysis of the entangled worlds of medieval Christian and Islamic theology
  • A detailed study of a much-neglected period of social and intellectual history in the Middle East

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Dr Simon Burton and Matthew C. Baines (eds.) – Reformation and Education: Confessional Dynamics and Intellectual Transformations

Published: 7 March 2022

Closely entwined with the educational revolution of early modernity, the Reformation transformed the pedagogical landscape and culture of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Embracing a broad understanding of the Reformation this volume examines the confessional dynamics which shaped the educational transformations of early modernity, including Calvinists, Lutherans, Anabaptists and Roman Catholics in its scope. Going beyond conventional emphases on the role of the printing press and theological education of clergy in university settings, it also explores the education of laity in academies, schools and the home in all manner of topics including theology, history, natural philosophy and ethics. More well-known figures like John Calvin and Philipp Melanchthon are examined alongside less-well known but important figures like Caspar Coolhaes and Lukas Osiander. Likewise, more prominent centres of reform including Switzerland, Germany and the Netherlands are considered together with often overlooked locations like the Czech Republic and Denmark.

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Professor Helen Bond and Joan Taylor – Women Remembered: Jesus' Female Disciples

Published: 17 March 2022

Do you think that Jesus only surrounded himself with men? Think again.

Inspired by their popular Channel 4 documentary Jesus' Female Disciples, historians Helen Bond and Joan Taylor explore the way in which Mary the mother of Jesus, Mary Magdalene, Mary, Martha and a whole host of other women - named and unnamed - have been remembered by posterity, noting how many were silenced, tamed or slurred by innuendo - though occasionally they get to slay dragons. Women Remembered looks at the representation of these women in art, and the way they have been remembered in inscriptions and archaeology. And of course they dig into the biblical texts, exposing misogyny and offering alternative and unexpected ways of appreciating these women as disciples, apostles, teachers, messengers and church-founders.

At a time when both the church and society more widely are still grappling with the full inclusion and equality of women, this is a must-read for anyone interested in the historical and cultural origins of Christianity.

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Dr Mark Harris and Hilary Marlow (eds.) – The Oxford Handbook of the Bible and Ecology

Published: 22 April 2022

Environmental issues are an ever-increasing focus of public discourse and have proved concerning to religious groups as well as society more widely. Among biblical scholars, criticism of the Judeo-Christian tradition for its part in the worsening crisis has led to a small but growing field of study on ecology and the Bible. This volume in the Oxford Handbook series makes a significant contribution to this burgeoning interest in ecological hermeneutics, incorporating the best of international scholarship on ecology and the Bible. The Handbook comprises 30 individual essays on a wide range of relevant topics by established and emerging scholars. Arranged in four sections, the volume begins with a historical overview before tackling some key methodological issues. The second, substantial, section comprises thirteen essays offering detailed exegesis from an ecological perspective of selected biblical books. This is followed by a section exploring broader thematic topics such as the Imago Dei and stewardship. Finally, the volume concludes with a number of essays on contemporary perspectives and applications, including political and ethical considerations. The editors Hilary Marlow and Mark Harris have drawn on their experience in Hebrew Bible and New Testament respectively to bring together a diverse and engaging collection of essays on a subject of immense relevance. Its accessible style, comprehensive scope, and range of material means that the volume is a valuable resource, not only to students and scholars of the Bible but also to religious leaders and practitioners.

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Dr Naomi Appleton – Narrative Visions and Visual Narratives in Indian Buddhism

Published: 22 April 2022

This volume explores the interaction between text and image in Indian Buddhist contexts, including not only the complex relationship between verbal stories and visual representations at Indian sites, but also the ways in which visual imagery is used within textual narratives. The chapters are authored by textual scholars and art historians, bringing together different disciplinary perspectives to seek a richer understanding of how text and art relate, and of the role of narrative imagery in different media and contexts.

The book opens with an introduction that explores what narratives and visual narratives are, and why we might want to study narrative images alongside imagery-rich literary narratives. The volume is then divided into three parts. The chapters in “Part I: Visual Narratives” (Zaghet, Reddy, Zin) explore visual depictions of stories in their own right; those in “Part II: Narrative Networks” (Mace, Appleton & Clark, Strong) seek to understand the relationship between specific visual and verbal narratives; and those in “Part III: Narrative Visions” (Gummer, Fiordalis, Walters) primarily investigate how visual imagery and visualisation work in textual narratives.

The volume seeks to bridge the divide that traditionally exists between textual scholars and art historians, and to challenge the contributors to think beyond the usual boundaries of our work.

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Dr Alexander Chow (ed.) – Scottish Missions to China: Commemorating the Legacy of James Legge (1815-1897)

Published: 19 May 2022

This volume explores the important legacy of Scottish missions to China, with a focus on the missionary-scholar and Protestant sinologist par excellence James Legge (1815–1897). It challenges the simplistic caricature of Protestant missionaries as Orientalizing imperialists, but also shows how the Chinese context and Chinese persons “converted” Scottish missionaries in their understandings of China and the broader world. Scottish Missions to China brings together essays by leading Chinese, European, and North American scholars in mission history, sinology, theology, cultural and literary studies, and psychology. It calls attention to how the historic enterprise of Scottish missions to China presents new insights into Scottish-Chinese and British-Chinese relations.

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Dr Suzanna Millar, Katherine J. Dell and Arthur Jan Keefer (eds.) – The Cambridge Companion to Biblical Wisdom Literature

Published: 9 June 2022

Study of the wisdom literature in the Hebrew Bible and the contemporary cultures in the ancient Near Eastern world is evolving rapidly as old definitions and assumptions are questioned. Scholars are now interrogating the role of oral culture, the rhetoric of teaching and didacticism, the understanding of genre, and the relationship of these factors to the corpus of writings. The scribal culture in which wisdom literature arose is also under investigation, alongside questions of social context and character formation. This Companion serves as an essential guide to wisdom texts, a body of biblical literature with ancient origins that continue to have universal and timeless appeal. Reflecting new interpretive approaches, including virtue ethics and intertextuality, the volume includes essays by an international team of leading scholars. They engage with the texts, provide authoritative summaries of the state of the field, and open up to readers the exciting world of biblical wisdom.

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Dr Ximian Xu – Theology as the Science of God: Herman Bavinck's Wetenschappelijke Theology for the Modern World

Published: 13 June 2022

The revival of Calvinism in the nineteenth-century Netherlands entailed the neo-Calvinist movement. With Abraham Kuyper, Herman Bavinck became a brand name of neo-Calvinism. Nonetheless, not until the first decade of the twenty-first century was scholarly interest in Bavinck’s work increasing. The conventional “two Bavincks” model used to read his work for much of the twentieth century argues that some contradictory and irreconcilable themes do exist in Bavinck’s system, which makes Bavinck a self-contradictory thinker. This dualistic reading characterised most of Bavinck scholars in the second half of the twentieth century. Since James Eglinton’s new reading of Bavinck’s organic motif, the conventional model became untenable, and scholars are seeking for a reunited Herman Bavinck. Bavinck as a holistic theologian has become the industry standard of Bavinck studies. Ximian Xu aims on the one hand to maintain “one Bavinck”, on the other hand, and more importantly, to fill in a notable gap in Bavinck scholarship – that is, no single work hitherto has focused on Bavinck’s idea of theology as the wetenschap (science) of God. This study demonstrates that the idea of scientific (wetenschappelijke) theology furnishes the meta-paradigm and cardinal model that incorporates the fundamental characteristics and themes of Bavinck’s dogmatic system. Moreover, it argues that Bavinck’s scientific theology makes an attempt to engage with the other sciences. Given this, Bavinck’s scientific theology is relevant today. That is, Bavinck’s theological insights can be deployed to advance theology’s engagement with the other sciences in contemporary secular universities.

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Dr Matthew Novenson – Paul, Then and Now

Published: 17 June 2022

The book follows a collection of a decade’s worth of essays, in which Dr Matthew Novenson puts contextual understandings of Paul’s letters into conversation with their Christian reception history. After a new, programmatic introductory essay that frames the other eleven essays, Novenson explores topics including:

  • the relation between theology and historical criticism
  • the place of Jews and gentiles in Paul’s gospel
  • Paul’s relation to Judaism
  • the relevance of messianism to Paul’s Christology
  • Paul’s eschatology in relation to ancient Jewish eschatologies
  • the aptness of monotheism as a category for understanding antiquity
  • the reception of Paul by diverse early Christian writers
  • the peculiar place of Protestantism in the modern study of Paul
  • the debate over the recent Paul-within-Judaism movement
  • anti-Judaism in modern New Testament scholarship
  • disputes over Romans and Galatians
  • the meta-question of what it would mean to get Paul right or wrong 

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Dr Michael Fuller (ed.) – Science and Religion in Western Literature: Critical and Theological Studies

Published: 16 August 2022

This book explores ways in which Western literature has engaged with themes found within the field of science and religion, both historically and in the present day. It focuses on works of the imagination as important locations at which human arguments, hopes and fears may be played out. The chapters examine a variety of instances where scientific and religious ideas are engaged by novelists, poets and dramatists, casting new light upon those ideas and suggesting constructive ways in which science and religion may interact. The contributors cover a rich variety of authors, including Mary Shelley, Aldous Huxley, R. S. Thomas, Philip Pullman and Margaret Atwood. Together they form a fascinating set of reflections on some of the significant issues encountered within the discourse of science and religion, indicating ways in which the insights of creative artists can make a valuable and important contribution to that discourse.

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Professor Mona Siddiqui – Human Struggle: Christian and Muslim Perspectives

Published: 4 March 2021

Many of the great thinkers and poets in Christianity and Islam led lives marked by personal and religious struggle. Indeed, suffering and struggle are part of the human condition and constant themes in philosophy, sociology and psychology. In this thought-provoking book, acclaimed scholar Mona Siddiqui ponders how humankind finds meaning in life during an age of uncertainty. Here, she explores the theme of human struggle through the writings of iconic figures such as Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Muhammad Ghazali, Rainer Maria Rilke and Sayyid Qutb - people who searched for meaning in the face of adversity. Considering a wide range of thinkers and literary figures, her book explores how suffering and struggle force the faithful to stretch their imagination in order to bring about powerful and prophetic movements for change. The moral and aesthetic impulse of their writings will also stimulate inter-cultural and interdisciplinary conversations on the search for meaning in an age of uncertainty.

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Professor Helen Bond, Eve-Marie Becker and Catrin H. Williams (eds.) – John's Transformation of Mark

Published: 25 March 2021

John's Transformation of Mark brings together a cast of internationally recognised biblical scholars to investigate the relationship between the gospels of Mark and John. In a significant break with the prevailing view that the two gospels represent independent traditions, the contributors all argue that John both knew and used the earlier gospel. Drawing on recent analytical categories such as social memory, 'secondary orality,' or 'relecture,' and ancient literary genres such as 'rewritten Bible' and bioi, the central questions that drive this volume focus on how John used Mark, whether we should speak of 'dependence,' 'familiarity with,' or 'reception,' and whether John intended his work to be a supplement or a replacement of Mark. Together these chapters mount a strong case for a reassessment of one of the key tenets of modern biblical criticism, and open up significant new avenues for further research.

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Professor Jolyon Mitchell – Religion and War: A Very Short Introduction

Published: 25 March 2021

War and Religion: A Very Short Introduction traces the history of religion and war. Is religion a force for war or a force for peace? From the crusades to Sri Lanka's civil war, religion has been involved in some of the most terrible wars in history. Yet from the Mahabharata to just war theory, religion has also provided ethical frameworks to moderate war, while some of the bravest pacifists have been deeply religious people. Ranging from ancient history to modern day conflicts, this VSI offers a nuanced view on these issues that have had such weight in the past, and which continue to shape the present and future.

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Dr Claire Wanless – Individualized Religion: Practitioners and Their Communities

Published: 6 May 2021

Drawing on ethnographic research, this book explores individualized religion in and around Hebden Bridge in West Yorkshire. Claire Wanless demonstrates that counter to the claims of secularization theorists, the combination of informal structures and practices can provide a viable basis for socially significant religious activity that can sustain itself. The subjects of this research claim a variety of religious identities and practices, and are suspicious of religious institutions, hierarchies, rules and dogmas. Yet they participate actively in an overlapping and cross-linking informal network of practice communities and other associations. Their engagements propagate and sustain a core ideology that prioritizes subjectivity, locates authority at the level of the individual, and also predicates itself on ideals of sharing, mutuality and community.

Providing a new theory of religious association, this book is a nuanced counterpoint to the secularization thesis in the UK and points the way to new research on individual religion.

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Dr Patrick McMurray – Sacrifice, Brotherhood, and the Body: Abraham and the Nations in Romans

Published: 24 June 2021

Sacrifice, Brotherhood, and the Body: Abraham and the Nations in Romans radically reassesses Paul's use of sacrificial language in light of new developments in our understanding of sacrifice, particularly with regard to its construction of kinship groups. Patrick McMurray argues that Jesus' death is not presented in sacrificial terms within Romans-rather, Paul's key invocation of sacrifice comes in 12:1 as applied to the living sacrifice of the gentiles. Here Paul's pairing of sacrifice with brotherhood builds on his earlier discussion of the Abrahamic lineage and brotherhood with Christ, with this familial membership being ratified and delivered by the living sacrifice of the gentiles themselves. As such, the ethnic and familial function of sacrifice is harnessed by Paul to bring God's promise to Abraham to fruition, with the gentiles entering the Abrahamic lineage alongside their new brothers the Israelites. Notably, the promise explicitly requires plurality and therefore ethnic variegation within Abraham's lineage. This new familial membership is profoundly transformative- the consequent influx of the spirit empowering the gentiles to live new lives of love that will fulfill the law (13:8 -10). In Romans, therefore, Christ frees the gentiles and then becomes their brother, facilitating their entry into Abraham's lineage, thereby bringing the promise to fruition and fulfilling the law.

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Dr Alex Chow and Easten Law (eds.) – Ecclesial Diversity in Chinese Christianity

Published: 28 July 2021

This volume explores Chinese Christianity—or Chinese Christianities—in a variety of forms and expressions, including those from outside mainland China. Advancing a multi-disciplinary approach to the study of Chinese churches, the essays collected here engage many historical, sociological, cultural, and theological contingencies. The collection includes historical discussions of the early-20th-century encounters of Protestant and Catholic missionaries in China and the rise of Christianity among Malaysian Chinese and British Chinese communities, and revisiting K. H. Ting (or Ding Guangxun) from his theology and approach to the Bible in the 1930s–50s. These retrospectives give way to contemporary explorations into how Chinese churches in Shanghai and Vancouver negotiate their urban identities amidst the complexities of globalization. As a whole, this anthology interrogates Chinese Christianity’s complex picture, helping readers to recognize the many shades and colors of the global Chinese Church.

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Dr Paul Fuller – An Introduction to Engaged Buddhism

Published: 12 August 2021

This textbook introduces and explores the ideas, practices and philosophy of the movement of engaged Buddhism. This new movement argues that suffering is not just caused by cravings of the mind, but also by political and social factors. Therefore, engaged Buddhists ‘engage’ with social issues to achieve liberation. Paul Fuller outlines the movement's origins and principles. This is followed by a comprehensive analysis of the central themes and issues of engaged Buddhism, offering new insights into the formation of modern Buddhism. The range of issues covered includes politics, gender, environmentalism, identity, blasphemy and violence. These are illustrated by case studies and examples from a range of locations where Buddhism is practised. Discussion points and suggested further reading, including internet resources, are provided at the end of each chapter, which will further enrich undergraduates' grasp of the topic.

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Dr Ulrich Schmiedel – Terror und Theologie: Der religionstheoretische Diskurs der 9/11-Dekade

Published: 18 September 2021

At least since the attacks of 9/11, religion has been met with suspicion. In this study, Ulrich Schmiedel investigates how political theologians in the UK and the US responded to the terror attacks. The friend-foe distinction, formulated by the German legal and political scholar Carl Schmitt, emerges as a core category in the controversy about liberal and post-liberal theories of religion, stirred up among defenders and despisers of the Global War on Terror. Building on Dorothee Sölle's political theology, Schmiedel draws them into a conversation with Muslim scholars of religion. Ultimately, he develops the contours of a coalitional and comparative political theology for pluralist societies today.

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Dr Joshua Ralston and Dr Ulrich Schmeidel (eds.) – The Spirit of Populism: Political Theologies in Polarized Times

Published: 11 November 2021

Populism is a buzzword. This compilation explores the significance of religion for the controversies stirred up by populist politics in European and American contexts in order to understand what lies behind the buzz. Engaging Jewish, Christian, and Islamic political thought and theology, contributions by more than twenty established and emerging scholars explore right-wing and left-wing protests, offering critical interpretations and creative interventions for a polarized public square. Both methodologically and thematically, the compilation moves beyond essentialist definitions of religion, encouraging a comparative approach to political theology today.

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Professor Helen Bond and Edward Adams (eds.) – The Bible on Television

Published: 2 April 2020

This volume examines and discusses selected Bible documentaries and academically informed dramatizations of the Bible. With a major focus on recent productions in UK mainline television within the past 15 years, the contributors also engage with productions from the USA. After a critical introduction by Helen K. Bond, charting and reflecting on the use of the Bible on television in recent years, the book falls into three sections. First, a number of influential filmmakers and producers, including Ray Bruce and Jean- Claude Bragard, discuss their work in relation to the context and constraints of television - especially religious television - programming. The volume then moves to reflections of various academics who have acted as 'talking heads', historical consultants and presenters, allowing discussion of different aspects of the process, including the extent to which they had influence and how their contributions were used. Finally, a number of scholars assess the finished products, discussing what they tell us about the modern reception of the Bible, with additional consideration of how these productions influence biblical scholars and contribute to the scholarly agenda.

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Dr Felicity Loughlin and Alexandre Johnston (eds.) – Antiquity and Enlightenment Culture: New Approaches and Perspectives

Published: 2 April 2020

This volume represents the first move towards a comprehensive overview of the place of antiquity in Enlightenment Europe. Eschewing a narrow focus on any one theme, it seeks to understand eighteenth-century engagements with antiquity on their own terms, focusing on the contexts, questions, and agendas that led people to turn to the ancient past. The contributors show that a profound interest in antiquity permeated all spheres of intellectual and creative endeavour, from antiquarianism to political discourse, travel writing to portraiture, theology to education. They offer new perspectives on familiar figures, such as Rousseau and Hume, as well as insights into hitherto obscure antiquarians and scholars. What emerges is a richer, more textured understanding of the substantial eighteenth-century engagement with antiquity.

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Professor Timothy Lim – The Earliest Commentary on the Prophecy of Habakkuk

Published: 9 April 2020

This is the first major commentary in English on Pesher Habakkuk for forty years. It elucidates the nature of 1QpHab as the earliest commentary on the prophecy of Habakkuk by a detailed study of the biblical quotation and sectarian interpretation. This commentary provides a new edition of the scroll, including new readings, and detailed palaeographical, philological, exegetical and historical notes and discussion. It shows that the pesherist imitates the allusive style of the oracles of Habakkuk and also draws on lexemes, phrases, and themes from other biblical texts and Jewish sources. It shows that the pesherist identified the Kittim with the Romans who conquered Judaea in 63 BCE, and suggests that the scroll refers to several righteous and wicked figures, including the last Hasmonean high priests.

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Dr Suzanna Millar – Genre and Openness in Proverbs 10:1-22:16

Published: 10 April 2020

A fruitful reading strategy that reveals expansive meaning in Proverbs. Interpreters often characterize Proverbs 10:1–22:16 as a dead-end of cold, disengaged dogma closed off from the realities of the world. In Genre and Openness in Proverbs 10:1–22:16, Suzanna R. Millar takes a different view, arguing that the didactic proverbs in these chapters are not dull and dry but are filled with poetic complexities open to many possible interpretations and uses. By incorporating paremiology, the technical study of the proverb genre, Millar sheds light on important debates such as character development, kingship, the connection between act and consequence, and the acquisition of wisdom.

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Professor Emma Wild-Wood – The Mission of Apolo Kivebulaya: Religious Encounter and Social Change in the Great Lakes c.1865-1935

Published: 17 April 2020

Apolo Kivebulaya was a practitioner of indigenous religion and a Muslim before he became in 1895 a Christian missionary from Buganda to Toro and Ituri. He is still admired as a churchman and missionary in the Anglican churches of Uganda, Congo, Tanzania and Kenya, and is a significant civic figure in school curricula in Uganda. This book provides insight into religious encounter in the Great Lakes region of Africa, in which individuals like Kivebulaya remade themselves through conversion to Christianity and re-ordered social relations through preaching a transnational religion which brought technological advantage.

In re-examining Apolo's life the author reveals the historic social processes and the cultural motivations which provoked religious and socio-political change in colonial east Africa. She explores the processes of his religious adherence, his travels and church planting, his commitment to Bible translation and its role in developing national sensibilities, and his engagement with missionaries, the Ganda political elite, and the peoples of the Ituri forest, as well as British and Belgian colonial polities. Kivebulaya utilized Christian repertoires of memory-making - the Bible, hymns, prayers and fellowship - in creating communities of disciples, and was instrumental in creating new forms of Christian identity in the region, fashioned by levels of acceptance and resistance. By focusing on the role of indigenous agents as harbingers of change, the author offers a new perspective on the history of the northern Great Lakes region of Africa.

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Professor Helen Bond – The First Biography of Jesus

Published: 30 April 2020

Reading the gospels as ancient biographies makes a profound difference in the way we interpret them. Biography immortalizes the memory of the subject, creating a literary monument to the person’s life and teaching. Yet it is also a bid to legitimize a specific view of that figure and to position the author and the audience as appropriate “gatekeepers” of that memory. Furthermore, biography is well suited to the articulation of shared values and commitments, the formation of group identity, and the binding together of a past story, present concerns, and future hopes. Helen Bond argues that Mark’s author uses the genre of biography—while both utilizing and subverting its literary conventions—to extend the proclamation from an earlier narrow focus on the death and resurrection of Jesus to include his way of life. The First Biography of Jesus shows how this was a bold step in outlining a radical form of Christian discipleship, one patterned on the life and death of Jesus.

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Dr David Grumett – Henri de Lubac, Shaper of Modern Theology: A Reader

Published: 1 May 2020

The French Jesuit Henri de Lubac (1896-1991) lived through the most pivotal events of twentieth-century Europe. He fought in the First World War, worked for the French Resistance during the Nazi occupation of France, and observed the rise and the fall of Communism in Eastern Europe. Being well acquainted with political theory and philosophy, he diagnosed the pathologies of modern materialist ideologies and presented a Christian alternative.

Within the Church, too, de Lubac was a witness of his times. A leading ressourcement theologian, he brought patristic and medieval texts to bear on doctrinal questions. In the 1950s, he experienced internal exile within the Church, forbidden to publish theological writings. After de Lubac's rehabilitation, however, Pope John XXIII asked him to serve as a consultant for the Second Vatican Council. In 1983 Pope John Paul II named him a cardinal.

De Lubac's theological writings are voluminous and wide-ranging, and this is the first time his most important texts have been combined into a single book. Annotated and arranged by theme, these passages address God, Christian faith, the Church, grace and nature, Scripture, the Eucharist, Buddhism, and the renewal of theology.

Drawing on a wide range of sources, including some only recently made available, the introduction sheds new light on de Lubac's work--its intellectual, social, and political contexts--and on his life, especially his later years. An extended postscript appraises the most important scholarship on de Lubac regarding the key themes covered by the texts.

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Professor Emma Wild-Wood and Dr Alex Chow (eds.) – Ecumenism and Independency in World Christianity: Historical Studies in Honour of Brian Stanley

Published: 10 September 2020

‘Ecumenism’ and ‘independency’ suggest two distinct impulses in the history of Christianity: the desire for unity, co-operation, connectivity, and shared belief and practice, and the impulse for distinction, plurality, and contextual translation. Yet ecumenism and independency are better understood as existing in critical tension with one another. They provide a way of examining changes in World Christianity. Taking their lead from the internationally acclaimed research of Brian Stanley, in whose honour this book is published, contributors examine the entangled nature of ecumenism and independency in the modern global history of Christianity. They show how the scrutiny afforded by the attention to local, contextual approaches to Christianity outside the western world, may inform and enrich the attention to transnational connectivity.

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Dr Joshua Ralston – Law and the Rule of God: A Christian Engagement with Sharī‘a

Published: 5 November 2020

Sharī'a is one of the most hotly contested and misunderstood concepts and practices in the world today. Debates about Islamic law and its relationship to secularism and Christianity have dominated political and theological discourse for centuries. Unfortunately, Western Christian theologians have failed to engage sufficiently with the challenges and questions raised by Islamic political theology, preferring instead to essentialize or dismiss it. In Law and the Rule of God, Joshua Ralston presents an innovative approach to Christian-Muslim dialogue. Eschewing both polemics and apologetics, he proposes a comparative framework for Christian engagement with Islamic debates on sharī'a. Ralston draws on a diverse range of thinkers from both traditions including Karl Barth, Ibn Taymiyya, Thomas Aquinas, and Mohammad al-Jabri. He offers an account of public law as a provisional and indirect witness to the divine rule of justice. He also demonstrates how this theology of public law deeply resonates with the Christian tradition and is also open to learning from and dialoguing with Islamic and secular conceptions of law, sovereignty, and justice.

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Dr James Eglinton – Bavinck: A Critical Biography

Published: 10 November 2020

Many of the great thinkers and poets in Christianity and Islam led lives marked by personal and religious struggle. Indeed, suffering and struggle are part of the human condition and constant themes in philosophy, sociology and psychology. In this thought-provoking book, acclaimed scholar Mona Siddiqui ponders how humankind finds meaning in life during an age of uncertainty. Here, she explores the theme of human struggle through the writings of iconic figures such as Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Muhammad Ghazali, Rainer Maria Rilke and Sayyid Qutb - people who searched for meaning in the face of adversity. Considering a wide range of thinkers and literary figures, her book explores how suffering and struggle force the faithful to stretch their imagination in order to bring about powerful and prophetic movements for change. The moral and aesthetic impulse of their writings will also stimulate inter-cultural and interdisciplinary conversations on the search for meaning in an age of uncertainty.

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Dr Arkotong Longkumer – The Greater India Experiment: Hindutva and the Northeast

Published: 22 December 2020

The assertion that even institutions often viewed as abhorrent should be dispassionately understood motivates Arkotong Longkumer's pathbreaking ethnography of the Sangh Parivar, a family of organizations comprising the Hindu right. The Greater India Experiment counters the urge to explain away their ideas and actions as inconsequential by demonstrating their efforts to influence local politics and culture in Northeast India. Longkumer constructs a comprehensive understanding of Hindutva, an idea central to the establishment of a Hindu nation-state, by focusing on the Sangh Parivar's engagement with indigenous peoples in a region that has long resisted the "idea of India." Contextualizing their activities as a Hindutva "experiment" within the broader Indian political and cultural landscape, he ultimately paints a unique picture of the country today.

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Dr Alison Jack and Caroline Blyth (eds.) – The Bible in Crime Fiction and Drama: Murderous Texts ​​​​​​

Published: 24 January 2019

The Bible has always enjoyed notoriety within the genres of crime fiction and drama; numerous authors have explicitly drawn on biblical traditions as thematic foci to explore social anxieties about violence, religion, and the search for justice and truth. The Bible in Crime Fiction and Drama brings together a multi-disciplinary scholarship from the fields of biblical interpretation, literary criticism, criminology, and studies in film and television to discuss international texts and media spanning the beginning of the 20th century to the present day. The volume concludes with an afterword by crime writer and academic, Liam McIvanney. These essays explore both explicit and implicit engagements between biblical texts and crime narratives, analysing the multiple layers of meaning that such engagements can produce – cross-referencing Sherlock Holmes with the murder mystery in the Book of Tobit, observing biblical violence through the eyes of Christian fundamentalists in Henning Mankell's Before the Frost, catching the thread of homily in the serial murders of Se7en, or analysing biblical sexual violence in light of television crime procedurals. The contributors also raise intriguing questions about the significance of the Bible as a religious and cultural text – its association with the culturally pervasive themes of violence, (im)morality, and redemption, and its relevance as a symbol of the (often fraught) location that religion occupies within contemporary secular culture.

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Professor Helen Bond, Chris Keith, Christine Jacobi and Jens Schröter (eds.) – The Reception of Jesus in the First Three Centuries

Published: August 2019

In The Reception of Jesus in the First Three Centuries, Chris L. Keith, Helen K. Bond, Christine Jacobi and Jens Schröter, together with an international cast of more than 70 contributors, provide a methodologically sophisticated resource, showing the reception history of Jesus and the Jesus tradition in early Christianity. The three volumes focus upon the diversity of receptions of the Jesus tradition in this time period, with memory theory providing the framework for approaching the complex interactions between the past of the tradition and the present of its receptions. Rather than addressing texts specifically as canonical or non-canonical, the volumes show the more complex reality of the reception of the Jesus tradition in early Christianity. Core literary texts such as Gospels and other early Christian writings are discussed in detail, as well as non-literary contexts outside the gospel genre; including the Apostolic Fathers, patristic writers, traditions such as the Abgar Legend, and modifications to the gospel genre such as the Diatesseron. Evidence from material culture, such as pictographic representations of Jesus in iconography and graffiti (e.g. the staurogram and Alexamenos Graffito), as well as representations of Jesus tradition in sarcophagi and in liturgy are also included, in order to fully reflect the transmission and reception of the Jesus tradition. Volume 1 provides an extensive introduction and, in 18 chapters, covers literary representations of Jesus in the first century, featuring gospel literature and other early Christian writings. Volume 2 examines all the literary texts from the second and third centuries, across 40 chapters, examining both gospel writing and other texts. Volume 3 examines visual, liturgical and non-Christian receptions of Jesus in the second and third centuries, across 24 chapters.

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Dr Hannah Holtschneider – Jewish Orthodoxy in Scotland: Rabbi Dr Salis Daiches and Religious Leadership

Published: August 2019

The book addresses a key period in Jewish religious history in the UK through an analysis of a specific rabbi’s career path. It seeks to shed new light on the history of Jewish migration to the UK and the impact of this in the provinces. Scotland as the location farthest removed from London provides a case study with which better to understand the relationship between the Chief Rabbi, his court and the United Synagogue, and provincial Jewish congregations. Rabbi Salis Daiches migrated to the UK in 1903 and led the Edinburgh Hebrew Congregation from 1919 to 1945. His life thus offers a window on the opportunities open to a well-educated modern orthodox rabbi, and at the same time demonstrates the challenges of integration, acculturation and religious change occupying Jewish communities at the time. Matters of authority, leadership structure, and local cultural identity are central themes. The research presented in the book is based on analysis of archival materials which have not been evaluated before: correspondence between the Chief Rabbi’s office, Scottish congregations, and Salis Daiches, records relating to the Conference of Anglo-Jewish Ministers/Preachers from 1909 until 1948, minute books of synagogues in Edinburgh and Glasgow, as well as personal corresponded of Rabbi Dr Salis Daiches. The focus of the book is on Rabbi Daiches himself, his relationship with Chief Rabbi Hertz, and his perception in the local Scottish context by his colleagues in congregations in Glasgow. The resulting complex picture of individual ambition, national discussion, and local relationships helps to explain the impact of the discussion about rabbinic authority in the UK in the provinces, thereby contributing to local Jewish and religious history. The final chapter focuses on the present day and examines the traces of the Jewish life discussed in the previous three chapters in current urban landscape of Edinburgh. Using literary examples, memoirs and oral history the book concludes with an echo of the early twentieth century Jewish life in the Scottish capital.

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Professor Stewart J Brown – W. T. Stead: Nonconformist and Newspaper Prophet

Published: 26 September 2019

W. T. Stead (1849–1912), newspaper editor, author, social reformer, advocate for women’s rights, peace campaigner, spiritualist, was one of the best-known public figures in late Victorian and Edwardian Britain. This a religious biography of Stead, giving particular attention to Stead’s conception of journalism, in an age of growing mass literacy, as a means to communicate religious truth and morality, and his view of the editor’s desk as a modern pulpit from which the editor could preach to a congregation of tens of thousands. The book explores how his Nonconformist Conscience and sense of divine calling infused his newspaper crusades, most famously his ‘Maiden Tribute’ campaign against child prostitution, and it considers his efforts, through forms of participatory journalism, to create a ‘union of all who love in the service of all who suffer’ and a ‘Civic Church’. The book considers his growing interest in spiritualism and the occult as he searched for the evidence of an afterlife that might draw people of an increasingly secular age back to faith. It discusses his imperialism and his belief in the English-speaking peoples of the British Empire and American Republic as God’s new chosen people for the spread of civilization, and it considers how his growing understanding of other faiths and cultures, but more especially his moral revulsion over the South African War of 1899–1902, brought him to question those beliefs. Finally, it assesses the influence of religious faith on his campaigns for world peace and the arbitration of international disputes.

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Drs Hannah Holtschneider, Mia Spiro & Phil Alexander (eds) – Narrative Spaces at the Margins of British-Jewish Culture(s)

Published: 2 November 2019

Co-edited special issue of the journal Shofar (37:3). The scholars and creative writers presented in this volume bring emphasis to the idea that a diverse range of multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary work at the margins of British Jewish studies—in England as well as in Wales, Ireland, and Scotland—not only has much to offer. Indeed, British national histories play a critical role in understanding Jewish migration, as is brought out by the papers in this special issue political “spaces” across the British Isles. Urban spaces, historical memory, cultural production, religious institutions, texts, music, visual art, and material documents all contribute to our understanding of constructions of belonging. By locating Scottish/Irish/Welsh/English Jewish histories through the “spatial turn” in humanities research, the papers assembled here demonstrate that a number of methods (historical, literary, musi- cological, ethnographic) can be employed to examine the intersections of both real and imagined spaces that can be coded as Jewish and/or Scottish, English, Welsh, or Irish.

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Dr Alex Chow – Chinese Public Theology: Generational Shifts and Confucian Imagination in Chinese Christianity​​​​​​

Published: 1 February 2018

It has been widely recognized that Christianity is the fastest growing religion in one of the last communist-run countries of the world: the People's Republic of China. Yet it would be a mistake to describe Chinese Christianity as merely a clandestine faith or, as hoped by the Communist Party of China, a privatized religion. Alexander Chow argues that Christians in mainland China have been constructing a more intentional public theology to engage the Chinese state and society, since the end of the Cultural Revolution (1966-76). Chinese Public Theology recalls the events which have led to this transformation and examines the developments of Christianity across three generations of Chinese intellectuals from the state-sanctioned Protestant church, the secular academy, and the growing urban renaissance in Calvinism. Moreover, Chow shows how each of these generations have provided different theological responses to the same sociopolitical moments of the last three decades.

This study illustrates how a growing understanding of Chinese public theology has been developed through a subconscious intermingling of Christian and Confucian understandings of public intellectualism. These factors result in a contextually-unique understanding of public theology, but also one which is faced by contextual limitations as well. With this in mind, Chow draws from the Eastern Orthodox doctrine of theosis and the Chinese traditional teaching of the unity of Heaven and humanity (Tian ren heyi) to offer a way forward in the construction of a Chinese public theology.

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Professor Brian Stanley – Christianity in the Twentieth Century: A World History ​​​​​​

Published: 26 June 2018

Christianity in the Twentieth Century charts the transformation of one of the world’s great religions during an age marked by world wars, genocide, nationalism, decolonization, and powerful ideological currents, many of them hostile to Christianity. Written by a leading scholar of world Christianity, the book traces how Christianity evolved from a religion defined by the culture and politics of Europe to the expanding polycentric and multicultural faith it is today — one whose growing popular support is strongest in sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, China, and other parts of Asia. Brian Stanley sheds critical light on themes of central importance for understanding the global contours of modern Christianity, illustrating each one with contrasting case studies, usually taken from different parts of the world. Unlike other books on world Christianity, this one is not a regional survey or chronological narrative, nor does it focus on theology or ecclesiastical institutions. Rather, Stanley provides a history of Christianity as a popular faith experienced and lived by its adherents, telling a compelling and multifaceted story of Christendom’s fortunes in Europe, North America, and across the rest of the globe. Transnational in scope and drawing on the latest scholarship, Christianity in the Twentieth Century demonstrates how Christianity has had less to fear from the onslaughts of secularism than from the readiness of Christians themselves to accommodate their faith to ideologies that privilege racial identity or radical individualism. A major (160,000 word) monograph that surveys the most important trends in world Christianity in the twentieth-century on the basis of fifteen main chapters, each of which comprises two detailed and contrasting geographical case studies that involve original research or a fresh perspective on the topic.

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Dr Alison Jack – The Prodigal Son in English and American Literature: Five Hundred Years of Literary Homecomings​​​​​​

Published: 13 December 2018

  • An authoritative yet accessible examination of the characters of the Prodigal son and his family as they appear in drama, novels, and poetry in English from the fifteenth to the twenty-first centuries
  • Focusing on the theme of homecoming each chapter provides an in-depth exploration of a particular period, geographical place, and/or genre in which the character of the Prodigal Son is particularly significant
  • Examines the work of Shakespeare, George Eliot, Elizabeth Gaskell, Margaret Oliphant, Elizabeth Bishop, Iain Crichton Smith, amongst others
  • Employs the hermeneutical resources of literature, theology, and history to bring valuable perspectives on the parable of the Prodigal son

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Dr Shadaab Rahemtulla – Qur’an of the Oppressed: Liberation Theology and Gender Justice in Islam​​​​​

Published: 16 February 2017

This book offers a comprehensive survey and analysis of the commentaries of four leading Muslim intellectuals who have turned to the Qur’an to confront the problem of social injustice, from poverty and patriarchy to racism and interreligious communal violence. Using a comparative transnational framework, the book explores the exegeses of the South African Farid Esack (b. 1956), the Indian Asghar Ali Engineer (1939–2013), the African American Amina Wadud (b. 1952), and the Pakistani American Asma Barlas (b. 1950), supplemented by in-depth interviews with each of them. The following question frames the study: How have these intellectuals been able to expound this seventh century Arabian text in a socially liberating way, addressing their own realities of oppression and, thus, contexts that are worlds removed from that of the text’s immediate audience? The book argues that they have been able to do so due to three principal reasons: firstly, the substantive content of the text itself, that is, its accent on social justice and descriptions of God as a compassionate and just deity; secondly, their critique of existing reading practices, which (according to them) pose obstacles in arriving at an egalitarian and inclusive understanding of the text; and thirdly, their adoption of new reading practices that enable them to arrive at precisely such an understanding, thereby making the text directly relevant to their own lived experiences. The book concludes by reflecting on new insights that liberationist and women’s gender egalitarian readings can offer in terms of the ‘thematic exegesis’ of the Qur’an.

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Professor Helen Bond – Jesus: A Very Brief History

Published: 20 April 2017

Short, accessible introduction to the historical Jesus and his continuing influence on the world and how we understand it.

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Professor Linden Bicket – George Mackay Brown and the Scottish Catholic Imagination​​​​​​

Published: 10 July 2017

This lively new study is the very first book to offer an absorbing history of the uncharted territory that is Scottish Catholic fiction. For Scottish Catholic writers of the twentieth century, faith was the key influence on both their artistic process and creative vision. By focusing on one of the best known of Scotland's literary converts, George Mackay Brown, this book explores both the Scottish Catholic modernist movement of the twentieth century and the particularities of Brown's writing which have been routinely overlooked by previous studies. The book provides sustained and illuminating close readings of key texts in Brown's corpus and includes detailed comparisons between Brown's writing and an established canon of Catholic writers, including Graham Greene, Muriel Spark, and Flannery O'Connor. This timely book reveals that Brown's Catholic imagination extended far beyond the 'small green world' of Orkney and ultimately embraced a universal human experience. A major (160,000 word) monograph that surveys the most important trends in world Christianity in the twentieth-century on the basis of fifteen main chapters, each of which comprises two detailed and contrasting geographical case studies that involve original research or a fresh perspective on the topic.

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Professor Mark Harris and Duncan Pritchard (eds.) – Philosophy, Science and Religion for Everyone

Published: 28 July 2017

Philosophy, Science and Religion for Everyone brings together these great truth-seeking disciplines, and seeks to understand the ways in which they challenge and inform each other.

Key topics and their areas of focus include:

  • Foundational Issues – why should anyone care about the science-and-religion debate? How do scientific claims relate to the truth? Is evolution compatible with design?
  • Faith and Rationality – can faith ever be rational? Are theism and atheism totally opposed? Is God hidden or does God simply not exist?
  • Faith and Science - what provides a better explanation for the origin of the universe—science or religion? Faith and physics: can they be reconciled? Does contemporary neuroscience debunk religious belief? Creationism and evolutionary biology - what constitutes science and what constitutes pseudo-science?
  • Practical Implications – is fundamentalism just a problem for religious people? What are the ethical implications of the science-and-religion debate? Do logic and religion mix?

This book is designed to be used in conjunction with the free ‘Philosophy, Science and Religion’ MOOC (massive open online course) created by the University of Edinburgh, and hosted by the Coursera platform. This book is also highly recommended for anyone looking for a concise overview of this fascinating discipline.

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Rev. Dr Alexander (Sandy) Forsyth – Mission by the People: Re-Discovering the Dynamic Missiology of Tom Allan and his Scottish Contemporaries ​​​​​

Published: 29 August 2017

How is Christianity to express itself in the public forum within Western nations? This book seeks answers through a historical retrieval of the dynamic mission in post-war Scotland of Tom Allan and his contemporaries: the Iona Community; the Gorbals Group Ministry inspired by the East Harlem Protestant Parish; and Robert Mackie, Ian Fraser and Scottish Churches House. Allan’s missiology focused upon the apostolate of the laity: allowing ordinary people to express their faith in word and deed in a full contextualization of Christianity to seek a missionary parish of constant witness and service. The book examines his work in parish ministry, nationally as leader of the Tell Scotland Movement, and internationally with the WCC; and the rich sources and context of his missiology. Key questions are asked about tensions caused by the role of the church, and the effect of the Billy Graham “All Scotland Crusade,” which Allan instigated, on the rapid decline in Christian adherence from the late fifties. His work is placed alongside his contemporaries, who took bold steps beyond those of Allan to relocate faith to the rhythms of the streets. Utilizing present day missiology as a lens, their inspiration leads to derivations and principles, offered as guideposts for Christian mission now.

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Dr Steven Sutcliffe and Carole Cusack (eds.) – G. I. Gurdjieff and the Study of Religion/s ​​​​​​

Published: 20 January 2016

This is an introduction by the guest editors to a special issue on the study of Gurdjieff approached within the comparative study of religion/s. We position this special issue within a new wave in the study of Gurdjieff that aims to eschew emic biases as well as a narrow ‘new religion’ typology in order better to engage the social, cultural and textual histories common to the general study of religion/s. We briefly indicate the existing scholarship on Gurdjieff in this light before introducing the contents of the five original articles in this special issue, with particular reference to the pioneering work of Andrew Rawlinson on Gurdjieff as a ‘western guru’.

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Professor Paul Foster – Colossians​​​​​​

Published: 25 August 2016

Foster provides the commentary on Colossians in this renowned series of biblical commentaries, under the General Editorship of Professor Morna D. Hooker (Lady Margaret Professor of Divinity Emerita in the University of Cambridge, UK). As with other volumes in the series, the key questions for scholars are scrutinised thoroughly - questions of historicity, the use of historical traditions and sources, the relationship of Colossians to the rest of the New Testament in particular the Pauline letters, authorship, and setting. Foster examines these issues in such a way as to present the heart of the academic debate to a wider audience, as befitting to the series reputation for rigorous commentary, which not only advances the knowledge of students and pastors, but also makes a contribution to the academic discourse in its own right.

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Professor Helen Bond and Professor Larry Hurtado (eds.) – Peter in Early Christianity

​​​Published: 5 December 2015

Long overshadowed by the apostle Paul, Peter has received increased scholarly attention of late. Building on that resurgence of interest, nineteen internationally prominent scholars of early Christian history examine and reassess the historical Peter and his significance, offering a comprehensive view of Peter through analysis both of New Testament texts and of noncanonical literature.

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Dr Anja Klein – Geschichte und Gebet: Die Rezeption der Biblischen Geschichte in den Psalmen des Alten Testaments  ​​​​​​

Published: 1 November 2014

Anja Klein presents a literary and theological analysis of the historical psalms Exod 15, Ps 78, 105, 106, 114, 135 and 136. Her study focuses on the redactional history of these texts and the demonstration of inner-biblical exegesis within their literary growth. It shows that the reception of biblical history starts with the Song of the Sea (Exod 15) in the narrative context and is then carried into the book of Psalms. It is here that the historical psalms continue the reception with different emphases, which results in an ongoing discourse on biblical history. This dynamic exegetical process can be described as biblical Judaism’s search for identity in which the people assure themselves of their history with their God. The literary genre of the texts as prayers evokes a cultic context and allows for an individual appropriation of biblical history.

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