The University of Manchester
School of Arts, Languages and Cultures
Samuel Alexander Building, WG16
Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9PL, UK
Phone: +44 (0)161 275 3064



The University of Manchester
School of Arts, Languages and Cultures
Samuel Alexander Building, WG8
Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9PL, UK
Phone: +44 (0)161 306 1663


What does it mean to exist in complex relationships with machines? What insights can be offered to our understandings of these relationships by the theologically significant theme of ‘love’? What critical assessments can be made of our multiple uses of technologies in shaping our futures, by reflecting on our pasts?

Events and Outputs
> Robots vs Loneliness?
> Focus Groups
> Conference: Care and Machines
Useful links 

Disquiet over the prevalence of social and economic individualism has a long history. In a world of mobile Capital and increasingly mobile people, communities of common tradition and locality appear to be under threat from the advent of a fragmented market society. Are these complaints against individualism justified? And crucially, how should Christians respond to them? Digging down into the substance of these questions, this project will consider the theological, liturgical and scriptural resources Christians have for understanding the notion of individualism in relation to issues of education, public life and the formation of democratic citizenship.


LTI research featured in 'The Conversation'

Dr Scott Midson, currently Postdoctoral Research Associate at the LTI, has written a short essay for the online journal The Conversation.

Titled 'Why Silicon Valley needs theologians', the piece highlights the need for theologians in a complex technoculture. It considers perceptions about religion and theology, including the reasons why they are typically overlooked in discussions about the ethics and philosophy of technology, while arguing overall that the sense of mystery in how we think about, develop, and use technology provides an opening for theological insights. These insights can tackle the 'solutionist' atittude that we cultivate with technologies.

Overall, the piece outlines the need for interdisciplinary conversation that includes and is enriched by theologians reflecting on the nature of belief in the contemporary world. 

The full text can be accessed here.


LTI celebrates 21 years of advanced research into theology and society

To mark the 21st year of LTI's pioneering research, a brochure has been commissioned to highlight some of the Institute's projects, events, and publications. The brochure can be viewed below, or alternatively, it can be downloaded here.


Ferguson Lecture 2018 - 1st March - Prof. John Milbank

LTI is pleased to announce details of the 2018 Ferguson Lecture, to be given by Prof. John Milbank (University of Nottingham). 

The title of the lecture is Theology and the Idea of a University. Below is a short blurb:

Today the place of theology in the university is in crisis, but so is the very idea of a university. We need to think these twin crises together and revive Newman's claim that the including of theology within a university is central to its very definition and purpose. Without theology, universities have degenerated from arts to research based institutions and are now further degenerating into merely instrumental wings of government and financial power. In order to reverse this, theology must recover its place, but first reform itself so that it is no longer watered-down through an internal dominance by supposedly neutral, 'critical' disciplines. Above all, the doubtful duality between theology and philosophy, which so many students now intuitively refuse, must be rejected. 

The lecture will take place on Thursday 1 March at 4pm in the Ellen Wilkinson Building, Graduate School Conference Room, C1.18 at the University of Manchester. (The Ellen Wilkinson building is no. 77 on the campus map. The campus map can be accessed here.) The lecture will be followed by a wine reception at 5.30pm.

Earlier the same day there will be a Ferguson presentation at Manchester Cathedral at which Prof. Milbank will speak to the topic, What is a Politics of Virtue? This presentation will take place from noon to 1pm, followed by lunch.

The Ferguson lecture and the Cathedral presentation are free and open to the public; a ticket is not required.


New book: Theology and Civil Society

Former LTI PhD student Charles Pemberton has recently publsihed an edited collection as part of the Routledge Studies in Religion Series. Titled Theology and Civil Society, the book features an interesting collection of essays that emerged from an LTI conference held in March 2015 that Charles also organised, 'Between Theology and the Political'. 

Essays in the volume explore a range of topics from food banks to migrant welcome committees, and community organisers to internet based campaigners. Theology and Civil Society advances our understanding of what civil society is and offers a theologically informed re-imagining of our shared social life. This is a pertinent topic for contemporary society, and it is explored expertly here by an international panel of contributors. As such, it is an important volume for any scholar of Theology and Religious Studies and their interactions with Sociology and Politics. It also features a foreword by Rev. Dr Rowan Williams. 

The book is available on Amazon


New book: Cyborg Theology

LTI's Postdoctoral Research Associate, Dr Scott Midson, has published a book based on his doctoral research undertaken at the University of Manchester. The book, published by I.B.Tauris, is titled Cyborg Theology: Humans, Technology and God

In the book, Midson takes Donna Haraway's line about cyborgs not recognising Eden as a starting point for exploring the wider theological and cultural significance of Eden for appeals to notions of nature and human nature. Cyborgs, as representative figures for deep the sense of connectedness between organisms - typically humans - and machines, can prompt fresh theological perspectives that take heed of theological traditions. At the same time theological anthropology can cast light on the spiritual nuances of the cyborg figure for our understandings of our technocultural worlds. 

The book is available on Amazon.


New book: The Ethics of Nature and the Nature of Ethics

Former LTI colleague Gary Keogh has edited a book, The Ethics of Nature and the Nature of Ethics, which has been published by Rowman & Littlefield

The book is the product of conversations that emerged from an LTI conference of the same name, which was held in May 2015 at the University of Manchester.

Featuring contributions from Prof Alison Stone (Lancaster), former LTI postdoc Dr Ben Wood (Leeds Trinity), current LTI postdoc Dr Scott Midson (Manchester) and others, this volume seeks to explore and examine nature in its multiple senses through its ethical implications. This is a bold and interdisciplinary offering to the complex debates about our understandings of and relationships to nature.

Available on Amazon.