Political Theology: Promise and Prospects

November 7-9, 2018 | Swift Hall

In recent years political theology has garnered much interest in the world of theology and religious studies; it has made a name for itself as an area worthy of separate attention and requiring or mobilizing specific interdisciplinary skills and qualifications. Current developments in the US and across the globe have only made scholars more aware of the need to reflect on the intersection of religion and politics, theology and justice. This richness of the field, which not only draws on multiple religious traditions but also allows for a shake-up inside individual traditions of center and margin, is part of its great appeal for current and future scholars of religion. Its openness to fields outside of religious studies combined with its commitment to the informed public understanding of religion makes it an area of wide scholarly appeal while allowing at the same time for meaningful debates with religious leaders. Political theology’s innovative strengths are on full display in the journal Political Theology, in the work of the newly founded AAR session on Political theology, and in the lively Political Theology network (https://politicaltheology.com). 

Given its decades long commitment to the public understanding of religion, the Martin Marty Center is pleased to announce that it will hold a conference on political theology from Wednesday November 7 through Friday November 9. The conference will bring together scholars from different universities, nationalities and religious backgrounds. Keen to avoid traditional paradigms and fixed ideologies, this University of Chicago conference asks each speaker to formulate from their specialty and perspective what they think political theology is and can be, including how it ought to be studied and the field to develop further. 

CLICK HERE FOR CONFERENCE SCHEDULE | Download a PDF of the conference schedule

Registration is recommended. Please write to politicaltheology@uchicago.edu to register.

Cosponsored by the Lumen Christi Institute and the France Chicago Center.

Image credit: Elmschrat Coaching38 [CC BY-SA 3.0  from Wikimedia Commons


Rev. Canon Kelly Brown Douglas, Union Theological Seminary
Dean of Episcopal Divinity School at Union Theological Seminary
Professor of Theology

Peter Casarella, University of Notre Dame
Associate Professor of Theology
Interim Director of Latin American North American Church Concerns

Ryan Coyne, University of Chicago
Associate Professor of the Philosophy of Religions and Theology, also in the College
Co-Director of the Undergraduate Studies Program

Hent de Vries, New York University
Paulette Goddard Professor of the Humanities
Professor of German, Religious Studies, Comparative Literature
Affiliated Professor of Philosophy

Matthew Drever, University of Tulsa
Associate Professor of Religion
Department Chairperson of Philosophy and Religion

Sean Hannan, MacEwan University
Assistant Professor, Humanities
Assistant Professor, History

Dwight Hopkins, University of Chicago
Alexander Campbell Professor of Theology, also in the College

Vincent Lloyd, Villanova University
Associate Professor of Theology/Religious Studies
Co-Editor of Political Theology


Florian Michel, Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne
Maître de conférences, Histoire et civilisations : histoire des mondes modernes, histoire du monde contemporain; de l'art; de la musique


Ebrahim Moosa, University of Notre Dame
Professor of Islamic Studies
Keough School of Global Affairs
Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies
Department of History

David Nirenberg, University of Chicago
Dean, Divinity School
Executive Vice Provost
Deborah R. and Edgar D. Jannotta Distinguished Service Professor
Committee on Social Thought and Department of History

Santiago Piñòn, Texas Christian University
Assistant Professor, Religion

Junaid Quadri, University of Illinois in Chicago
Assistant Professor of History and Religious Studies

Jawad Qureshi, Zaytuna College
Assistant Professor of Islamic Studies

Mona Siddiqui, OBE, University of Edinburgh
Professor of Islamic and Interreligious Studies

Jeffrey Stout, Princeton University
Professor of Religion


Emilie Tardivel-Schick, Institut Catholique de Paris
Maître de conférences, Faculté de Philosophie

Andrea White, Union Theological Seminary
Associate Professor of Theology & Culture


Opening Address by Jeffrey Stout

Wednesday November 7, 5pm., Swift Hall, Third Floor Lecture Room

Jeffrey Stout on "Religion Within the Bounds of Justice"

Jeffrey Stout was a civil rights and anti-war activist before spending more than four decades teaching religion, ethics, and political theory at Princeton University. His books include Ethics after Babel and Democracy and Tradition, both of which won awards for excellence from the American Academy of Religion. He delivered the Gifford Lectures (“Religion Unbound") at the University of Edinburgh in 2017 and is scheduled to deliver the American Lectures in the History of Religions (“The Cinematic Sacred") in 2019.


Persons with a disability who need an accomodation to attend a Divinity School event, please call Sandra Peppers in advance: 773-702-8219.