Dr Barnabas Aspray
Lecturer in Philosophy of Religion
Dr Aspray holds degrees in Computer Science (BSc University of Exeter, 2005), Biblical Studies (MA Regent College, 2013), Christian Theology (MPhil University of Cambridge, 2014), and Philosophy of Religion (PhD University of Cambridge, 2019). Before joining King’s in 2022, he was a Junior Research Fellow at Pembroke College Oxford.
Research interests and PhD supervision
- The ethics and politics of refugees and asylum
- Twentieth-century phenomenology of religion
- The history of the relationship between philosophy and theology
Dr Aspray’s current research project is the development of a political ethics of immigration from an ecumenical Christian perspective. This involves understanding the role of the nation state and its relationship to human rights individual and communal, using twentieth-century continental philosophy to reframe how we conceptualise racial and ethnic ‘otherness’, asking difficult questions about how power, fear and the need for security drive our opinions, and mapping a way forward for Christians in a world of ever increasing numbers of migrants, both forced and voluntary.
- Ricœur at the Limits of Philosophy: God, Creation, and Evil (Cambridge University Press: 2022).
- ‘A Throne Will Be Established in Steadfast Love’: Welcoming Refugees and the Davidic Kingdom in Isaiah 16:1-5’, Open Theology 7 (2021): 426–44.
- ‘How Can Phenomenology Address Classic Objections to Liturgy?’, Religions 12, no. 4 (April 2021): 236.
- 'Y a-t-il une métaphysique ricœurienne ?’, Crossing: The INPR Journal 1 (2020): 73-83.
- “No One Can Serve Two Masters”: The Unity of Philosophy and Theology in Ricœur’s Early Thought’, Open Theology 5, no. 1 (2019): 320–332.
- ‘“Scripture Grows with its Readers”: Doctrinal Development from a Ricœurian Perspective’, Modern Theology 35, no. 4 (2019): 746-759.
Dr Aspray teaches undergraduate philosophy of religion courses that explore the writings of great thinkers in history: Anselm, Descartes, Spinoza, Kant, and Kierkegaard.
Expertise and public engagement
Dr Aspray hosts the podcast Faith at the Frontiers, in which challenges to the Christian faith are debated in a peaceful and friendly way by means of interviews with leading experts around the world.
Dr Aspray’s research project is pursued in partnership with Refugee Education UK, a charity which helps refugee and asylum-seeking children and young people build more hopeful futures through education.