Institute for Religion & Critical Inquiry

Philosophy, Religion, and Culture

Philosophy, Religion, and Culture supports theoretically-informed constructive work in the study of religion. We have a longstanding strength in European philosophy, especially post-structuralism and phenomenology, and researchers also have a keen interest in cultural studies. Their research draws upon these resources in conversation with classic religious texts in order to address ethical and political questions of contemporary concern.

Research Projects

Atheism and Christianity: Moving Past Polemic

Whereas both parties in the contemporary debate over atheism frequently respond to a caricature of the other, this project aims to show that sophisticated forms of atheism and Christian thought share much in common. An interdisciplinary team will explore the intersections between atheism and Christianity in discourse (in light of negative theology), experience (drawing upon phenomenology), and politics (especially post-secular political theology). In this way, the project aims to clarify what atheism and Christianity might learn from each other, and to develop a new way of thinking about the place of religion in contemporary society.

The project includes six chief investigators: Associate Professor Robyn Horner (ACU), Dr Christiaan Jacobs-Vandegeer (ACU), Dr David Newheiser (ACU), Professor Henning Tegtmeyer (KU Leuven), Professor Denys Turner (Yale / ACU), and Professor Stephan van Erp (KU Leuven). It also includes a wide group of distinguished international collaborators.


For more information about the project, please contact David Newheiser, david.newheiser@acu.edu.au

Caption: a meeting of the Chief Investigators and other collaborators