skip to primary navigationskip to content

Dr James Orr

Dr James Orr

University Lecturer in Philosophy of Religion


Dr Orr holds a PhD and MPhil in Philosophy of Religion from St. John’s College, Cambridge, and a Double First in Literae Humaniores from Balliol College, Oxford.  Formerly McDonald Postdoctoral Fellow in Theology, Ethics, and Public Life at Christ Church, Oxford, he is a Trustee of St. Paul’s Theological Centre, London, and a member of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s advisory group, the Lambeth Partnership. He was recently interviewed about his research for Richard Marshall's "End Times" series.


  • PhD Supervision (Philosophy of Religion & Moral Philosophy)
  • MPhil Supervision (Philosophy of Religion & Moral Philosophy)
  • Tripos Part IIB, C11 (Truth, God, and Metaphysics)
  • Tripos Part IIA, B11 (Ethics and Faith) [Paper Coordinator]
  • Tripos Part IIA, B10 (God, Freedom, and the Soul)
  • Tripos Part I, A9 (Ethics) [Paper Coordinator]
  • Tripos Part I, A8 (Philosophy of Religion)

Key Publications


  1. The Discarded Mind: The Decline and Fall of Divine Ideas (in progress)
  2. Being and Eternity: Phenomenology and Thomism in Edith Stein (Bloomsbury, forthcoming, 2022)
  3. Neo-Aristotelian Metaphysics and the Theology of Nature (Routledge, forthcoming, 2021) (co-editor with Robert C. Koons and William M.R. Simpson)
  4. The Mind of God and the Works of Nature: Laws and Powers in Naturalism, Platonism, and Classical Theism (Leuven: Peeters, 2019)


  1. 'Minding the Gap: Distributive Egalitarianism and Theological Ethics' (under review)
  2. ‘Classical Theism and the Problem of Intrinsic Value’ (under review)
  3. 'The Discarded Mind: Divine Ideas and Secular Concepts,' Neue Zeitschrift für systematische Theologie und Religionsphilosophie 62(2) (2020), 167–89
  4. 'No God, No Powers: Classical Theism and Pandispositionalist Laws,’ International Philosophical Quarterly 59(4) (2019), 411-26
  5. 'Berlinian Pluralism and Abrahamic Monotheism,' Political Theology 18(5) (2017), 441-57
  6. 'Teleology as a Theological Problem in Kant’s Pre-Critical Thought,’ Modern Theology 32(4) (2016), 522–43
  7. ‘The Fullness of Life: Death, Finitude, and Life-Philosophy in Edith Stein’s Critique of the Early Heidegger,’ Heythrop Journal 55(4) (2014), 565-75
  8. ‘Being and Timelessness: Edith Stein’s Theological Critique of Heideggerian Temporality,’ Modern Theology 30(1) (2014), 114-31
  9. ‘Heidegger’s Critique of Aquinas on Truth: A Critical Assessment,’ New Blackfriars 95 (2014), 43-56
  10. ‘Edith Stein’s Critique of Sociality in the Early Heidegger,’ Neue Zeitschrift für systematische Theologie und Religionsphilosophie 55(3) (2013), 379-96

Recent Reviews

  1. Philip Gonzales, Reimagining the Analogia Entis: The Future of Erich Przywara’s Christian Vision (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2019), Scottish Journal of Theology (forthcoming, 2020)
  2. Tom Holland, Dominion: The Making of the Western Mind (London: Little, Brown, 2019), The Critic (December 2019) [link]
  3. Paul Draper and J.L. Schellenberg, eds., Renewing Philosophy of Religion: Exploratory Essays (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018), Times Literary Supplement (6 September 2019) [link]
  4. Fiona Ellis, ed., New Models of Religious Understanding (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018), Times Literary Supplement (6 September 2019) [link]
  5. Oliver O'Donovan, Entering Into Rest: Ethics as Theology III (Grand Rapids, MI.: Eerdmans, 2017), Times Literary Supplement (April 2018) [link]
  6. Rupert Shortt, God is No Thing: Coherent Christianity (London: Hurst Publishing, 2016), Religious Studies 53(2) (2017), 285-7 
  7. Anthony Meredith, S.J., Christian Philosophy in the Early Church (London and New York: T&T Clark, 2012), Heythrop Journal 57(1) (2016), 236-7 
  8. John Hughes, ed., The Unknown God: Responses to the New Atheists (London: SCM Press, 2013), Science and Christian Belief 27(2) (2015), 212-4 
  9. Stephen Bullivant and Michael Ruse, eds., The Oxford Handbook of Atheism (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), Religious Studies (2015)
  10. James Mumford, Ethics at the Beginning of Life: A Phenomenological Critique (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), Modern Theology 31/2 (2015)
  11. Russell Re Manning, ed., The Oxford Handbook of Natural Theology (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013), Expository Times 125 (2014), 333-35 


Current students and supervisors can access the Faculty’s Moodle page by clicking on the image below.