Global Public Theology - A Roundtable on Experimental and Explorative Approaches

12 September 2024 13:15 to 16:00 Seminar


This roundtable explores state and significance of public theology in the current geopolitical situation. The increasingly interdisciplinary field of public theology investigates the role of religions in the public square. Particularly in controversies that are stirred up or perceived to be stirred up by religious diversity, such investigations have taken on a new significance. But how do global entanglements change what scholars do? How do local engagements change what scholars do? And how do scholars of religion in the public square negotiate the double-bind between neutrality and normativity that they are always already caught in? 

Approaching the field of public theology from critical and constructive angles, the panellists at this roundtable ask and answer these questions with reference to Jewish, Christian, and Muslim thought and theology. While all of them are situated in Europe, they draw on experiences and expertise from inside and outside the continent to envision new ways of doing scholarship on religion in the public square that go beyond the state of the art to tackle the most pervasive and the most pressing challenges confronting contemporary societies.



  • Dion Forster is Professor of Public Theology at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. He is a leading scholar on public theology in contemporary societies, combining African and European approaches to the decolonization of Christian theology.
  • Annette Langner-Pitschmann is Professor of Theology in Times of Globalization at Goethe Universität Frankfurt. An expert on pragmatist philosophy, she has written widely on religiosity, secularity, and ambiguity in contemporary democracy.
  • Joshua Ralston is Reader in Christian-Muslim Relations at the University of Edinburgh. The co-founder of the Christian-Muslim Studies Network, he is a leading scholar on comparative political theology in conversation with Islam.
  • Fatima Tofighi is Assistant Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Religions and Denominations in Qom. Currently, she works at the International Centre for Comparative Theology and Social Issues at Universität Bonn. She is an expert on Qur’anic and Biblical hermeneutics.
  • Alana Vincent is Associate Professor of Religious Studies at Umeå Universitet. Her wide-ranging writings bring post-Holocaust Jewish thought into conversation with postcolonial philosophies to study meaning making in politics and popular culture.

About the event:

12 September 2024 13:15 to 16:00



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