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Research Groups

The School’s research is organized within three main research groups:

History of Asian Religions

This group is primarily focused on Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism, both in India and in other regions to which Buddhism subsequently spread: Central Asia, China and Japan. A key concern is the significance of narrative text in the transmission and adaptation of religious knowledge. Our members work on texts in Sanskrit, Pali, and other classical, mediaeval and modern Indian languages, as well as in Chinese, Japanese and Tibetan. Members of the group are also interested in the application of critical and anthropological approaches to the history of Asian religions.

Religion in Late Antiquity

Scholars in this group work on Patristics, late Roman and early Byzantine, Manichaean and early Islamic studies. Their main focus is on research on Christianity in the Mediterranean and Near East in the Patristic, Byzantine and early mediaeval eras. This includes the interaction of Christianity with late Graeco-Roman religion and early Islam, and the emergence of the Greek, Latin and Syriac traditions. Members of the group work on texts in Greek, Latin, Syriac, Arabic and Chinese. The CLARC research centre is based in this group.

Religion in Contemporary Societies

The key concerns of this group are with religion in the contemporary world, particularly the UK and South Asia, and including both Christianity and other modern religions (especially Islam and Buddhism). Major areas of focus include the body, health and religion (the BAHAR sub-group), including work on religion and gender, and on religion and autism; Islam in the UK (the ISLAM-UK centre); and the role of religious professionals (the planned Centre for Chaplaincy Studies)