Faculty of Theology and Religion

Theology is one of the oldest faculties in this ancient University. One of the first courses of lectures given at Oxford was in Theology, over 800 years ago. Alexander Neckam, from St Albans, is recorded as giving biblical and moral lectures as early as 1193, on the Psalms of David and the Wisdom of Solomon. One of the first major University buildings (still intact and recently described as ‘the loveliest room in England') was the Divinity School, which was begun in 1423 to cater for Theology lectures. So we have a long history behind us, of which Oxford's beautiful setting and many historic buildings remind us.

Nevertheless, we are very much aware that present and future success cannot rest on past achievements. Recent developments include our work in the Study of Religion and in the major religious traditions of the world, and also our exploration of the interface between science and religion.

At the heart of the Faculty of Theology and Religion are those who hold full-time permanent positions and who have a particular responsibility for teaching, research and the delivery of the syllabus, as well as academic leadership. These University postholders number 23 in all; they are Professors and University Lecturers. Each is attached to a College: some have greater responsibilities to undergraduates, and others to graduates. But the Faculty is further enriched by its 100 or so other members; they include research fellows and College chaplains, lecturers and tutors, and they are involved in teaching, largely through tutorials.

For more information about what life is like at the Faculty, visit the Theology and Religion blog.

Teaching and Research Showcase

Podcast: Sacrifice and Modern Thought

Sacrifice and Modern Thought

Sacrifice is at the heart of religion. It is not surprising, then, that the 'turn to religion' we have witnessed over the past two decades has led to a renewed interest in sacrifice as well. In light of this, the Centre for Theology and Modern European Thought at the University of Oxford presents five interviews with contributors to the recently-published book Sacrifice and Modern Thought (ed. Zachhuber and Meszaros, 2013). At around 15 minutes in length, each interview provides an insight into how the modern fascination for the topic of sacrifice has evolved, and how the concept of sacrifice in turn has shaped theological debate, the literary imagination and anthropological theory. We hope you enjoy the recordings.

More podcasts from the Theology and Religion Faculty

Research Project: Compassion in Healthcare: Practical Policy for Civic Life

Healthcare Values Partnership logo

The Arts and Humanities Research Council has made a grant of £199,258 to Professor Joshua Hordern, Associate Professor of Christian Ethics, for this 18 month project (January 2017-June 2018). Dr Therese Feiler is the researcher on the project.

The project involves research and knowledge exchange with three healthcare organisations:

  • Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust – workshops on compassionate excellence in practice
  • The Royal College of Physicians London – workshops on medical professionalism link
  • The Stratification in Colorectal Cancer Consortium – workshops on ethical issues in personalised, precision medicine link

The project webpage is here. Further details about the project on the Research Councils UK website may be found here

More research projects and centres from the Faculty of Theology and Religion

Faculty of Theology and Religion

For more information, visit the Theology and Religion Faculty website

Theology and Religion Blog


Undergraduate courses

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Graduate courses

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Academic staff

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