The Department of Theology & Religious Studies at King's has a dynamic interdisciplinary research culture that fosters collaboration, innovation, and intellectual leadership at all career stages. Our work has an international reach and a strong civic emphasis on London communities. In REF2014 we were ranked third in the UK for research power, and our outstanding research environment placed us among the top five TRS departments.
Our collective interrogation of religion and modernity is informed by rigorous textual and ethnographic scholarship, and by broad historical expertise ranging from antiquity to the late-modern period. TRS research exemplifies King's celebration of diversity and its international vision, enacting its deep-rooted ethos of “service to society” through new engagements with lived religion, beginning in London and expanding into national and global contexts.
We are one of the few UK departments that gives equal weight to Theology and to Religious Studies. Our research and teaching forge new connections between these two disciplines. Recognising a colonial legacy that divides Christian Theology from the study of ‘other religions,’ we are reconceiving religious diversity in terms of intersectional identities, theological innovation, and complex encounters both within and between traditions.
TRS is also distinctive in its vitality and innovation in Theology and the Arts, and its orientation to London communities and culture. We use our location in the capital to maximise the impact of our research, sustaining strong links with Parliament and Whitehall, Westminster Abbey, and the National Gallery.
The Department runs a weekly interdisciplinary TRS research seminar, as well as a wide range of specialist seminars and workshops, from Rainy Season Pali classes to a reading group on postcolonial theory. It is home to the annual F.D. Maurice Lecture on religion and society, the Ethel M. Wood Lecture on Biblical Studies, and the Colin Gunton Lecture on Christian theology.
Research students from London, the UK and worldwide are drawn to TRS by our wide-ranging expertise and the unique opportunities offered by our London context. Our large community of graduate students are given opportunities for research leadership, trained for excellence in their chosen discipline, and encouraged to shape our vibrant research culture in creative ways. Recent PhD graduates have published research monographs for presses including Oxford University Press, SBL Press, Bloomsbury, T&T Clark, and the University of Pennsylvania Press.
Our partnerships with London galleries offer unique opportunities for PhD students in Theology and the Arts, such as private views at the National Gallery and internships at the Courtauld Institute of Art. Students in the social sciences take up internships with INFORM, the educational charity housed within the Department.