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Faculty of Divinity


The D Society is the main research seminar in the faculty for Philosophy of Religion and Ethics. It is chaired by Professor Catherine Pickstock.


Professor Donald Mackinnon

Papers are invited from a wide range of philosophers, philosophers of religion and ethicists, both internal to Cambridge and from outside. A short response paper from a graduate student or faculty member usually opens the discussion.

Founded in 1921 by Professor James Bethune-Baker, the D Society was originally a subscription society intended to supplement the (then) predominantly biblical emphases of the faculty to include doctrinal and philosophical discussion. Under Professor Donald MacKinnon's chairmanship it became the main locus in the university for the interaction between senior members of the Philosophy and Divinity faculties; and under Professor Nicholas Lash it was transformed into a regular senior seminar in the faculty. 

The seminar is open to all interested members of the University, and to visitors who may wish to attend. Graduate students in Philosophy of Religion and Ethics are encouraged to come from the beginning of their programme and to make the seminars, and the enjoyable tea that follows, a place of regular interaction.

Members of the D Society are also encouraged to attend the regular public lectures in Philosophy of Religion, including the Stanton Lectures.


This year’s D Society seminars will be held on zoom, 1.30-3pm, with an online blog for continued discussion between seminars.



Easter Term 2022


Seminars take place 1.30-3.30pm by Zoom link

all are welcome


29 April 2022 

Professor Jeffrey Bloechl, "Being and Praying" (Boston College and Australian Catholic University). Response by Dr Silvianne Aspray (Cambridge).





13 May 2022

Professor David Burrell (Notre Dame) "Reason, diverse traditions, and mutual illumination" D Society celebrating the work of Professor David Burrell, with several responses including Professor Isabelle Moulin (Strasbourg).





Please contact with any questions about the seminars.


[Run in collaboration with the Seminar in Inter-religious Relations Tuesdays 2.15pm. Contact Dr Giles Waller for details]






Image used on this page: Title: Donald Mackenzie Mackinnon. Creator: Unknown. Source: Licence: Public Domain.