Institute for Religion & Critical Inquiry

Professor James McLaren

Professor James McLaren

Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Research

BA Hons, MA (UniMelb), DPhil (Oxon)

James S. McLaren is Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Research. He was formerly a Professor in Ancient History and Biblical Studies and Foundation Director of the Institute for Religion and Critical Inquiry until March 2017. He graduated with a BA Hons (Melb) in History and Middle Eastern Studies in 1983 and an MA (Melb) in 1985. His doctorate was completed at the University of Oxford under the supervision of E.P. Sanders and M. Goodman in 1990. His main research interests relate to the interaction between the Jewish and Roman worlds and the emergence of Christianity in the first century CE and as well as military history. He has been New Testament Editor of the Australian Biblical Review since 2001 and is a member of the Brill Josephus Project. In 2012 he was awarded the Krister Stendahl Medal in Biblical Studies for his contributions to the field.

Key publications

‘The Jews in Rome during the Flavian Period’, Antichthon 47, 2013, 156-72.


‘The Temple and the Gentile’. In Attitudes to Gentiles in Ancient Judaism and Early Christianity, edited by David C. Sim and James S. McLaren, 92-108. London: Bloomsbury, 2013.


‘The Jewish War as a Response to the Crisis of Flavian Propaganda’. In Ancient Jewish and Christian Texts as Crisis Management Literature: Thematic Studies from the Centre for Early Christian Studies, edited by David C. Sim and Pauline Allen, 9-28. London: T&T Clark, Continuum, 2012.


‘Going to war against Rome: the motivation of the Jewish rebels’. In The Jewish Revolt against Rome: Interdisciplinary Perspectives, edited by Mladen Popović, 129-53. Journal for the Study of Judaism Supplement Series 154. Leiden: Brill, 2011.


‘Searching for Rome in Galilee: Reassessing Rome-Galilee relations (63 B.C.E. to 70 C.E.)’. In Rome and Religion: A Cross-Disciplinary Dialogue on the Imperial Cult, edited by Jeffrey Brodd and Jonathan L. Reed, 111-36. Atlanta, GA: Society of Biblical Literature, 2011.