A major work on music and religious experience brings new insights to the field of theology and the arts.
Professor David Brown and Dr Gavin Hopps examine the overlooked theological dimensions of music in a new publication entitled The Extravagance of Music.
The volume is available in hardback and e-book formats, with a free online preview on the publisher’s website.
Excerpt from the publisher’s description:
“This book explores the ways in which music can engender religious experience, by virtue of its ability to evoke the ineffable and affect how the world is open to us. Arguing against approaches that limit the religious significance of music to an illustrative function, The Extravagance of Music sets out a more expansive and optimistic vision, which suggests that there is an ‘excess’ or ‘extravagance’ in both music and the divine that can open up revelatory and transformative possibilities.”
David Brown and Gavin Hopps, The Extravagance of Music, Cham: Palgrave Macmillan, 2018. Foreword by Frank Burch Brown (pp.v-xvii).
Hardcover ISBN: 978-3-319-91817-4
e-Book ISBN: 91818-1
As part of ITIA’s innovative research, we are pleased to share the following call for participants for a survey on progressive rock and spirituality.
Hello! My name is Kimberley Anderson and I’m a PhD student in Theology and the Arts at the University of St Andrews. My thesis explores how certain forms of progressive rock might be connected to spiritual or religious experience. To make my project as accurate as possible, I am gathering first-hand accounts of how listeners experience this music, and I would be delighted to hear from you if you have anything to say about this combination of ideas.
This month I am running a survey that is open to people of all backgrounds, beliefs and persuasions, as long as they are over 18 years of age and interested in progressive rock. My definition of progressive rock is very flexible, so please do not be put off if you only have experience with a few bands which fit loosely into this category.
It starts with some quick, general questions about how you perceive and experience prog rock, and moves on to ask participants to describe, where possible, specific kinds of experience related to progressive rock and spirituality. It can be completed online via the link below and, all in all, should only take 15-20 minutes of your time. Your answers will be treated confidentially, but there is also the option to leave your email address in case you are willing to keep in touch and perhaps answer any more questions (this would be extremely helpful!).
We are delighted to announce the appointment of Dr Rebekah Lamb to a new lectureship in Theology & the Arts at the School of Divinity, University of St Andrews, starting in August 2018.
Dr Lamb is currently a Gilson post-doctoral fellow at the University of St Michael’s College in the University of Toronto. Her research specialization is in Pre-Raphaelite art and poetry.
She is currently completing a book with McGill-Queen’s University Press on boredom as a distinctive, emerging modern experience of time in the Victorian period, and on theological and aesthetic dimensions and responses to that experience. She has recently published on Christina Rossetti’s theology of boredom, Chesterton and the Distributist Movement, and Dietrich von Hildebrand’s Liturgy and Personality.
Dr Lamb will be working in the School’s Institute for Theology, Imagination and the Arts alongside Dr Gavin Hopps (Senior Lecturer in Theology and Literature), Prof. Judith Wolfe (Professor of Philosophical Theology), and Dr George Corbett (Lecturer in Theology, Imagination and the Arts). She will contribute to the Institute’s expanded provision in undergraduate teaching and graduate distance learning, and to its creative and outreach initiatives.
ITIA is pleased to congratulate our own Natasha O’Hear and her co-author Anthony O’Hear on the recognition of their book Picturing the Apocalypse (Oxford University Press).
Picturing the Apocalypse was awarded a prize by Art and Christianity Enquiry, who promote excellence in educational projects and academic research in the field of visual art and religion.
The ACE/Mercers’ Book Award is the only literary prize worldwide for a publication that notably advances a public understanding of the relationship between the visual arts and religious experience, beliefs and practice.
Dr Natasha O’Hear is part-time Lecturer in Theology & Visual Art at ITIA. The prize of £3,000 was presented in October.
The Institute for Theology, Imagination and the Arts (ITIA) is delighted to announce a new collaboration with StAnza, Scotland’s International Poetry Festival.
Following the success of the TheoArtistry Composers’ Scheme (which has led to six new works of choral music, recently recorded by St Salvator’s Chapel Choir), ITIA and StAnza are launching the TheoArtistry Poets’ Scheme.
For more information, and to apply, please see the Creative Scotland website.
Our first research seminar of the new semester will be held on Friday, 22 September 2017.
ITIA and Divinity postgraduates, faculty, and guests are all welcome.
ITIA research seminars take place every Friday at 11am during term time. The full schedule is available here.
ITIA Seminar © Transpositions
The start of this academic year saw the launch of an exciting new dimension in the work of ITIA. TheoArtistry explores how ITIA’s world-leading research may impact the making and practice of the arts.
In TheoArtistry’s inaugural project, six outstanding young composers have been chosen to work with Sir James MacMillan, Dr George Corbett, and researchers from the School of Divinity. Each composition focuses on a biblical passage on the theme of ‘Annunciations.’
TheoArtistry celebrates the practice, making, performance, curatorship, and reception of Christian art. From arts festivals to art works, TheoArtistry’s collaborative projects bring together the expertise and interests of artists, theologians, and commissioners of art.
The first TheoArtistry Festival, entitled ‘TheoArtistry: Music as Theology,’ will take place in March 2018 in St Andrews.
More information about the compositions, as well as current and future projects, can be found on the TheoArtistry website: http://theoartistry.org/
St Mary’s College at the University of St Andrews is best in the UK for Religious Studies and Theology, according to The Guardian University League Tables 2017.
The University’s School of Divinity — and home to ITIA — is once again ranked above Durham, Oxford, Cambridge and Exeter to take top spot in the subject area.
The University of St Andrews has been ranked the best university in Scotland and third in the United Kingdom. Read more on the University of St Andrews website.
St Mary’s College at the University of St Andrews ranks strongest in the UK in The Guardian University League Tables 2016 for religious studies and theology.
The University’s School of Divinity — and home to ITIA — also climbed to top place in ‘Theology and Religious Studies’ in the 2016 Complete University Guide. Leap-frogging over Durham, Oxford, Cambridge and Exeter to be top of our subject league table is, says Head of School, Mark Elliott, ‘an achievement that testifies to colleagues’ commitment to make the School of Divinity at St Mary’s a most stimulating environment for learning theology.’
First in the UK for students’ overall satisfaction
St Mary’s has also come top in the UK for overall satisfaction with our undergraduate Divinity, Theological and Biblical Studies courses in the 2014 National Student Survey.
Read more on the University of St Andrews website.
We are delighted to announce three new appointments at the Institute for Theology, Imagination and the Arts, all starting in September 2015:
James MacMillan CBE will take up a part-time professorship in ITIA, conducting workshops and working with research students.
James MacMillan is one of Scotland’s most accomplished and honoured classical composers and conductors.
Dr George Corbett will join the permanent, full-time staff of ITIA as Lecturer in Theology, Imagination and the Arts.
Dr Corbett currently holds a prestigious Junior Research Fellowship at Trinity College, Cambridge. He specialises in the literature and thought of the medieval period, with a particular focus on Dante, on whom he has recently published Dante and Epicurus: A Dualistic Vision of Secular and Spiritual Fulfilment. Dr Corbett is also director of CEPHAS (Centre for Philosophy and Scholastic Theology), which runs weekend courses and seminars on Thomistic thought.
Dr Natasha O’Hear will take up a part-time lectureship in Theology & Visual Art, contributing to ITIA’s M.Litt. programme and supervising Ph.D. students working in the area of visual art.
Dr O’Hear specialises in artistic interpretations of the Book of Revelation. She completed a PhD on the subject at Oxford University in 2008 and this led to her first monograph with OUP in 2011 Contrasting Images of the Book of Revelation in Late Medieval and Early Modern Art: A Case Study in Visual Exegesis. She has also published several articles on the subject. Having formerly held a Lectureship in New Testament Theology at Worcester College, Oxford, she now teaches at Burlington Danes Academy in West London.