The Program in Biblical and Early Christian Studies pursues research on Greek, Latin, Syriac, and Coptic Christian traditions up to c.1000 CE.
In keeping with the foundational importance of the texts that came to form the canon of Christian scripture, one of the program’s main areas of focus is the discipline traditionally known as biblical studies. The program aims to put these texts in a wider historical context by examining less mainstream Christian traditions, as well as the reception of biblical texts in the late antique period and beyond.
A further aim of the program is to examine the way in which Christian traditions from the first century onwards interacted with the religious and cultural matrices out of which they emerged, especially the Jewish and Greco-Roman heritages. A related important area of research is exploring the processes associated with, and ramifications of, Christianity’s growing power in the ancient world, and the transformation of the Roman Empire into Byzantium in the East and medieval Christendom in the West.
Our researchers study some of the following topics:
Our research also aims to advance conversations with other areas of contemporary theology, hermeneutics, and religious studies.
Our global and multidisciplinary team of scholars are experts in the fields of religion, theology, history, and literature.
The scholars in the IRCI's Biblical and Early Christian Studies program stand at the forefront of these fields in Australia and work with a rich network of collaborators spread around the globe.
This project addresses the question: How did the earliest Christian communities employ texts and traditions ascribed to a sacred past to negotiate issues relating to their identity – who they were, why they existed, how they differed from others?
This project explores ‘modes of knowing’ constructed by Greek, Latin and Syriac Christians 100-700 CE in relation to contemporary theological, philosophical, medical and rhetorical discourses, social practices (asceticism, pilgrimage, liturgies), imperial and institutional power structures, and the material world of early Christianity (relics, sacred texts).
ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award, 2018-2020, Chief Investigator: Associate Matthew Crawford, in collaboration with Ca’ Foscari University of Venice.
The Biblical and Early Christian Studies program hosts a fortnightly research seminar series which showcases outstanding work in the field and nurtures scholarly conversation with participants from Australia and around the world.
The purpose of this program is to understand and reframe history through dynamic reinterpretations of the medieval and early modern past and to examine the modern world's self-conscious rejections of religious Byzantine and medieval pasts.View program
ACU’s Node of the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions approaches emotions studies from the perspective of religion, philosophy, history, health humanities and literature from antiquity to today.View program
The Religion and Theology program supports constructive work in the study of religion that incorporates a wide range of methodologies. The program includes scholarship in religious studies that draws upon religious thought in order to address issues of widespread concern.View program