Journal of the Oxford Graduate Theological Society


About the Journal

The Journal of the Oxford Graduate Theological Society (JOGTS) is a peer-reviewed journal which publishes scholarly articles in the field of theology and religion. As an affiliate of the Faculty of Theology and Religion at the University of Oxford, the scope of the journal is defined by the breadth of research undertaken by fellows and postgraduate students of the faculty. As such, articles address questions pertinent to the critical study of theology and religion from a variety of disciplines and methodologies, including (but not limited to): biblical criticism, modern systematic theology, philosophy of religion, the study of religions, science and religion, patristic studies, ecclesiastical history, anthropology and sociology of religion.

Each issue divides contributions into two categories:

  1. Those which respond to the specific theme of the edition.
  2. Those which come under the general scope of the journal.

The journal also publishes critical book reviews, media reviews, and featured articles.

JOGTS Issue 3.1. Theme: Hope and Time in Theology and Religion

In wake of the theme “Theology, Religion and Crisis” of the previous edition of The Journal of the Oxford Graduate Theological Society, the matter of hope arises as a complex consideration entailing that, at some point, that which is hoped for, desired, trusted, believed, or relied upon will come to be. Not hope alone, however, but the matter of hope in and of time and the time for or of hope is also deceptively confounding and there is great potential in contemplating the inextricable link between hope and time.

Whilst there is a tendency in life and in scholarship to descend abjectly into the timeless and hopeless conceptual abyss, hope and time offer plentiful resources to avoid this. The world over—across philosophical, religious, theological, scientific and cultural traditions and epochs—thinkers have wrestled and struggled, contemplating and presenting their own thoughts on these two foundational human constructs. Along the way, whether ancient, modern, postmodern, or other, some of the most creative, penetrating, stimulating, and beautiful—but also ambivalent and difficult—cogitations and works of argumentation, prose, poetry, myth, literature, and art have and continue to emerge and populate the diverse and ever-evolving theological and religious landscapes we occupy (and have occupied).

In light of these achievements and resources, questions arise as to how religious scholars and theologians engage (or will engage) with questions of hope and time. What can we learn from scriptural and religious texts regarding time, timelessness, temporality, and eternity? Can creation narratives and myths and science and/or history be integrated into a symbolic rather than a literal formulation? How do ideas of hope and time impact those working with more contemporary issues such as gender studies, ethics, racial and economic justice, and environmental and climate change studies through diverse disciplinary vantages such as science and religion, biblical studies, modern theology, comparative religion, and philosophical and political theology?

The theme of this edition of The Journal of the Oxford Graduate Theological Society is, therefore, “Hope and Time in Theology and Religion” and the Editorial Board invites papers of between 7,500 - 12,000 words from varied scholarly perspectives exploring questions of hope, desire, time, timelessness, eternity, temporality, history, and other queries emanating from these interrelated phenomena.

Under the broad rubric of this year’s theme “Hope and Time in Theology and Religion,” papers may wish to develop ideas and arguments stimulated or inspired by one or more of the below quotations:

  • “But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.” (v. 2 Peter 3:8)
  • “By human calculation, a thousand ages taken together form the duration of Brahma’s one day and such also is the duration of his night.” (Bhagavad Gita, 8.17)
  • “Oh, what would it profit a person if he won the whole world but lost himself; what would it profit him if he won time and what belongs to time if he broke with the eternal; what would it profit him if he swept through the world at full sail with the fair winds of applause and admiration when he runs aground on eternity; what does it profit the [hopeless] sick person to imagine, what everyone thinks, that he is healthy when the physician declares: He is sick [hopeless]!” (Søren Kierkegaard, “An Occasional Discourse”)
  • “‘Hope’ is the thing with feathers / That perches in the soul / And sings the tune without the words / And never stops - at all -”  (Emily Dickinson, "'Hope' is the Thing with Feathers")
  • “To articulate what is past does not mean to recognize ‘how it really was.’ It means to take control of a memory, as it flashes in a moment of danger… ...In every epoch, the attempt must be made to deliver tradition anew from the conformism which is on the point of overwhelming it… ​​...The only writer of history with the gift of setting alight the sparks of hope in the past is the one who is convinced of this: that not even the dead will be safe from the enemy if he is victorious. And this enemy has not ceased to be victorious.” (Walter Benjamin, “On the Concept of History”, Thesis VI)
  • “The timeless in you is aware of life's timelessness. And knows that yesterday is but today's memory and tomorrow is today's dream.” (Kahlil Gibran, “On Time,” The Prophet)
  • “What, then, is time? Provided that no one asks me, I know what time is. But if I want to explain it to an inquirer, I do not know.” (St. Augustine, Confessions, Book XI)

Featured Contribution

A special interview with Rowan Williams, Honorary Professor of Contemporary Christian Thought at the University of Cambridge and 104th archbishop of Canterbury (2002–12), noted theologian and poet.

Feature article by Celia Deane-Drummond, Director of the Laudato Si’ Research Institute and Senior Research Fellow in theology at Campion Hall, University of Oxford.

Feature article by Ryan Mullins, (PhD, University of St Andrews), author of God and Emotion (Cambridge University Press, 2020) and host of The Reluctant Theologian, a podcast on God, time, and everything in between.

Book Reviews

Book reviews for JOGTS should be between 800 and 1,200 words long. JOGTS publishes only those reviews that are relevant to each issue’s theme, so all reviews submitted for this issue must demonstrate how the book they discuss pertains to “Hope and Time in Theology and Religion.” Reviews should survey the structure, substance, and methodology of the book they discuss and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of each of these elements: reviews must analyse, not merely summarise. At the end of the review, please provide: (1) your name, (2) your programme of study, qualification, or position, and (3) your institutional affiliation, including, if applicable, your college.


 The deadline for submissions (including book reviews) is 24th April 2022. Publication is scheduled for Autumn 2022. Word length for papers is 7,500 - 12,000 (including footnotes) and book reviews is 800 - 1,200.

Submissions can be made through the online platform, accessible here:

Authors are advised to consult the Author Guidelines on the same page.