Prof. Adrian Thatcher
Tel: 01752 704058
www.AdrianThatcher.org
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    My Lectures

The Trinity - A Gentle Commendation
I gave this lecture to the annual conference of Modern Church in July 2017. The title of the Conference was God - None, One, Three, or Many? I was asked to provide a gentle defence of the doctrine of the Trinity in an 'up-to-date' context. This is the result. It develops some of my thoughts on the Trinity in two of my books - God, Sex and Gender, and Redeeming Gender ...

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Conversation with Thomas Laqueur
My book Redeeming Gender draws on the work of Thomas Laqueur, and especially his famous book Making Sex: Body and Gender from the Greeks to Freud. I was delighted when we were able to have a public colloquium at the University of California at Berkeley, during my recent visit to the USA. I introduced Redeeming Gender, Prof. Laqueur replied, and the ...

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Redeeming Gender
I gave this lecture (or a similar version of it), during a recent trip to the USA, in the University of Emory, Atlanta, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Creighton University, Omaha, Nebraska, and the Church Divinity School of the Pacific at Berkeley. The lecture explains some of the ideas in my book Redeeming Gender.

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New Directions in Sexualities and Christianity
I gave this talk at Chester Cathedral in February 2017. It is short (15 minutes), and part of the second forum, run by the Department of Theology of the University of Chester, entitled 'Sexuality and Anglican Identities'. The panellists were asked to try to anticipate future developments in gender and sexuality studies, and appropriate theological ...

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Affirming Sexual Minorities
This talk locates much of the opposition to lesbian and gay unions within a line of what I call 'horrible hermeneutics', i.e., biblical interpretation which has harassed slaves, coloured people, illegitimate children, witches, even women, and so on, instead of loving them unconditionally. It is only twenty minutes long, and was given to the Moreton ...

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Marriage - Contemporary Perspectives
This is the second of two lectures I gave at Regent's Park College, Oxford, in January 2017, on marriage. It offers a contemporary theology of marriage, which is relevant to everyone, whether married or not.

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Marriage - how we got to where we are
I gave this lecture at Regent's Park College in January 2017. It describes how marriage developed from biblical times to the twentieth century. A second lecture, 'Marriage - Contemporary Perspectives' (also available) is about a contemporary theology of marriage.

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Redeeming Gender
I gave this lecture to the Oxford Centre for Christianity and Culture at Regent's Park College, on May 16th, 2016. It outlines the argument of my book Redeeming Gender. It is a shorter, revised version of earlier presentations, in several English universities, during the academic year 2015-16.

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The Oxford Handbook of Theology, Sexuality and Gender - a Discussion
I gave this talk to a group of D.Prof. students from the Department of Theology at the University of Chester, during their residential conference at Gladstone's Library, in April 2016. I edited the Handbook which was published in 2015. The talk describes how and why the authors, themes and chapters were selected. It expresses alarm about the growing gap ...

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The Churches, Sex, and Gender
I gave this talk at Holy Ground, Exeter Cathedral, on Sunday 13th March, 2016. I was pleased to have been invited by the Canon Chancellor to talk about the Oxford Handbook of Theology, Sexuality and Gender, which I recently edited. In my talk I expressed great concern that official Church teachings on sexuality and gender are increasingly out of sync with ...

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Theology and Gender
I gave this lecture to the ecumenical Contemporary Theology Group which meets in St. Peter’s Methodist Church, Canterbury, in January 2016. It is one of a series of public lectures which introduces some of the themes of my book Redeeming Gender, which Oxford University Press will publish in July 2016. The argument was given added poignancy by the ...

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Complicating Genders
I read this paper to a theology research seminar at the University of Roehampton, London, in December 2015. It anticipates one or two of the arguments of my new book, Redeeming Gender (Oxford University Press, forthcoming, July 2015).

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Redeeming Gender
For 25 years I have been writing about theology and sexuality. Two principal issues have been the possibility of the accommodation of women’s bodies in masculine sacral and sacramental space (the ordination of women), and the possibility of the accommodation of same-sex desire within the modern two-sex binary (homosexuality). They have a common yet ...

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Theology, Sex, Relationships: A Framework
This was the first of 2 lectures given to a Continuing Ministerial Conference for Military Chaplains, at Amport House, Andover, in March 2015. It is in four parts: a description of some of the recent i) social, and ii) historical and intellectual developments within the last 50 years; iii) some reflections on using the Bible as a source for Christian sexual ...

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Relationships, The Body, and The Gospel
This is the second of 3 lectures I gave at a Continuing Education Conference for Military Chaplains at Amport House, Andover, in March 2015. It is in 3 sections. First, the outline of the framework for divine and human love, begun in the first lecture, is continued; second, an inclusive 'Sexual Theology for Everyone' is suggested (this includes material on ...

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In Favour of 'Equal Marriage'
I gave this lecture at the Leeds Church Institute on Sat. 31st. Jan., 2015. The argument of the lecture can be found in greater detail in my book Making Sense of Sex. There are other lectures on the website about same-sex marriage. This lecture was re-written for the Leeds audience. I hope they will find it useful in their work of Christian education in the ...

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Reading the Bible and 'Doing' Gender
I gave this lecture at a study day at the Leeds Church Institute on Sat. 31st. Jan, 2015. The organizers asked me to address three issues: how to read the Bible in relation to sex and gender; how to read biblical passages purporting to condemn homosexuality; and how to read biblical passages which demean women as unequal with men.

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The Bible, Gender and Formation
I gave this mini-lecture at Ripon College, Cuddesdon, in July 2014, at a conference convened by the Centre for the Study of Christianity and Sexuality. It was a specialized topic. Readers who are interested in how to read the Bible well (instead of learning what's in it) are invited to consult my book The Savage Text - The Use and Abuse of the Bible.

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Redefining Marriage?
I gave this lecture to a meeting of the Centre for the Study of Christianity and Sexuality, in Birmingham, in February 2014. I tried to show historically that if marriage has an unchanging character, it is its openness to change. I introduced 'eight pictures' of marriage, drawn from the best contemporary theology of marriage, and strongly suggested that ...

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Robert Lenkiewicz' Education Project: 25th Anniversary
This short talk was the 'Announcement' of the 25th Anniversary of the Education Project of the Plymouth painter, the late Robert Lenkiewicz, at the Plymouth College of Art. 25 years ago I was teaching and writing about the philosophy and theology of education. This occasion was an opportunity to muse again about some of the main concepts and ideas, and to ...

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The One Sex Theory - and why it still matters
Could the ancient world really have believed there was only one sex? Increasingly I have found confirmation of this theory, and I have described it in my last two books. In this paper, which I read to the research seminar in the Theology and Religion Department at the University of Exeter in November, 2012, I traced out my further thinking about the ...

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Evidence to the House of Bishops' Working Group on Sexuality
The House of Bishops of the Church of England has set up a working group on sexuality, in a tradition which produced reports on human sexuality in 1991 and 2003. They kindly invited me to give 'evidence' at Church House, Westminster, on July 5th, 2012. I was given 15 minutes to make a statement, and to answer questions for 45 minutes afterwards. This is the text ...

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Sex and the City...of God
I gave this talk at St. Bride's, Liverpool, in June 2012. It is a revised version of an earlier lecture I gave at the Catholic University, Leuven, Belgium. It represents my current thinking about sexuality and gender, and it 'trailed' my new book, Making Sense of Sex, which was released by SPCK in the same week.

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Family Matters: Families in Theological Perspective
I gave this lecture at the Oxford Centre for Christianity and Culture, at Regent's Park College, University of Oxford, in November, 2011. It was the final lecture in an interdisciplinary series of lectures on families. It commends some of the ideas in my book Theology and Families, and develops some thoughts presented in an earlier lecture in Ottawa, in ...

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Gender and the Gospel
I gave this lecture at the 'Be-Attitude' Inclusive Church Conference, in November 2011, at The Hayes Conference Centre, Swanwick, Derby, UK. 'Inclusive Church' is \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\"a network of individuals and organisations whose make-up reflects the breadth and scope of the Church of England and beyond. We come from ...

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God, Sex and Gender
I gave this lecture at the Faculty of Theology at the Catholic University, Leuven, Belgium, on 4th November, 2011. The aim of the lecture was to introduce some of the themes of my book God, Sex and Gender to a Roman Catholic audience and to invite their responses. I was delighted with the size and breadth of the audience (undergraduate, postgraduate, faculty ...

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The Good Book Study Day
I led The Good Book Study Day which was organised for lay people at South St. Baptist Church, Exeter on 22nd October, 2011. I took some themes from my book The Savage Text, including the principles for a peaceable reading of the Bible. The text of my talk, which formed the basis of Bible reading in groups, is included here.

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After the Authorised Version
This lecture was the opening address at the annual conference of Modern Church, at High Leigh Conference Centre, UK, in July, 2011. Modern Church asked me to chair the conference, called 'Can These Bones Live? - Reading the Bible Today'. We were aware that 2011 was the 400th anniversary of the publication of the King James Version of the Bible. We wanted to ...

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Using the Bible Well
I gave this lecture at a conference, The Challenges of Preaching the Gospel in a Secular World', at the University of Winchester, UK, in June 2011. It summarises some of the arguments of the book, and introduces some of the principles developed in it for a peaceful and faithful reading of the Bible.

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The King James Version of the Bible as a 'Savage Text'
I gave this lecture at the University of Aberdeen on 4th May, 2011. The University hosted a series of six lectures which celebrated the achievements of the 'KJV', but which also attempted a 'retrospective assessment' of it. I was delighted that the organisers thought that the stance I had adopted towards the use and misuse of the Bible in my book The Savage ...

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Savage Texts and Lethal Readings
I read this short paper at the Society for the Study of Theology Annual Conference in York, UK, in April, 2011. The conference is one of many celebrating the 400th anniversary of the King James Version of the Bible. I am wary of these celebrations. The paper will tell you why. Longer versions will appear on this website when I have read them, at the University of ...

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Towards a Gay-Friendly Church: New Arguments for Inclusion
I gave this lecture in the Church of St Michael & All Angels, Mount Dinham, Exeter, on 23rd Feb., 2011. It was the first in a series of theological lectures for 2011 hosted by that Church, and the attendance exceeded expectations. It draws on material in my new book God, Sex and Gender - An Introduction (see Books). I wanted to try to say something fresh about the ...

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Marriage - its History and Future direction
I gave this lecture to a group of about 35 students, all of them training to be clergy and ministers through the South West Ministry Training Course, on 17th Jan., 2011. I was back in my old place of employment, The College of St Mark & St John, Plymouth (now University College, Plymouth, St. Mark & St. John), lecturing in what was once the Theology and ...

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Are Civil Partnerships Marriages?
This is the text of a lecture I gave to the annual conference of the Lesbian and Gay Christian Movement in April 2004. I have re-issued it (November 2010) because of its treatment of the question whether civil partnerships are marriages. In 2004 LGCM was preoccupied with the legislative proposals for civil partnerships in the UK. Should they be welcomed as a ...

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The Body and its Sexuality
This is the text of a talk I gave to a group of Anglicans, a Deanery Synod, in Stafford, UK, in October 2010. The title was given to me, and the talk is the result. It was part of a series on the body. If you have looked at some of the other lectures on my website you will see that it has much in common with an earlier lecture this year, 'Dismal Prospects for a Christian ...

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Dismal Prospects for a Christian Theology of Gender
I read this paper at a research seminar in the Dept of Theology and Religion at Exeter University in June 2010. As I was writing my forthcoming book, God, Sex and Gender - An Introduction (Wiley-Blackwell, 2011) I was forced to think about gender harder than ever before. This paper suggests the direction I think Christian thought should take with regard to ...

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Family's Many Faces
I gave this lecture to a Theology research conference, also called Families Many Faces, in St. Paul University, Ottawa, Canada, in May 2010. It popularizes some key ideas from my book Theology and Families (see My Books). It takes seriously that in the UK and elsewhere, half of all children born, are born outside of marriage. It tries to build a bridge ...

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Marriage - Contemporary Theological Perspectives
I read this paper at a research seminar at Ripon College, Cuddesdon, Oxford, in January 2010. The audience was mainly students training for ordination, mostly in the Church of England. This is one of my recent essays on marriage. Section 1 examines textual, historical, theological, and social criticisms of marriage: section 2 replies to them: section 3 ...

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Sex, Idolatry, and the Anglican Communion
I read this paper to a research seminar on 'Sexuality and the Churches', run by the Department of Theology and Religious Studies in the University of Leeds, in January 2010. I have long been involved in attempts to liberalize Anglican teaching about sexuality, and especially homosexuality. In this lecture I attempt to go beyond the usual arguments, and to ...

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Marriage in the New Millennium. 1. Theology.
I was delighted to be invited to give two lectures at a marriage conference, at St. Paul's Episcopal Church, Cleveland Heights, Ohio, in Sept. 2009. My visit was made possible through the kindness of my hosts, Lanse and Patience Hoskins, who were celebrating ten years of happy marriage. I was attracted to St. Paul's (see link) because it is a lesbian and gay ...

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Marriage in the New Millennium. 2. Applications
This is the second of the two lectures I gave at St. Paul's Episcopal Church, Cleveland Heights, Ohio. Given that marriage is what Christians can plausibly say it is (lecture 1), what are the implications for young people made increasingly aware of their sexuality? For couples living together informally? For lesbian and gay couples? For people in ...

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A Christian Vision for Family Life
I gave this talk to the William Temple Association, in Bournemouth, UK, in April 2009. The Association consists of Christian women and men of all churches who want to learn more about their faith and its application to contemporary issues. It introduces some of the ideas in my book Theology and Families.

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The Savage Text - Two Views of the Bible
I gave this short talk at the annual conference of the Society for the Study of Christian Ethics at Westcott House, Cambridge, in Sept. 2008. It was a 'trailer' for my book The Savage Text which had just been published. There was just time to make a basic point. Anglicans say they have two views about the Bible: the 'guidebook view' and the 'witness view'. I ...

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Secular Family Theory - A Contribution from Theology
I gave this lecture to an interdisciplinary seminar, at the University of Wales, Newport, in April 2008, as part of a project on Families, funded by the Research Councils. It introduces, to a secular audience, some of the ideas in my book Theology and Families.

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The Dark Shadow of the Bible
This is a short, popular piece, written in April 2008, indicating that the Bible, carelessly or literally read, is a dangerous, destructive book. It introduces my book The Savage Text.

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Campaign for Real Sex
This is the full text of a sermon I preached in the chapel of Emmanuel College, Cambridge, in March 2008. The 'Campaign for Real Sex' was the chaplain's name for a series of sermons during Lent that year. Beginning with a light-hearted comparison with the Campaign for Real Ale, the sermon soon launches into a more serious comparison, between popular ...

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Childhood Today - A Theological Perspective
I gave this talk at St. Paul's Institute in St. Paul's Cathedral in September 2007. The occasion was a study day and a training day for Anglican clergy in the Diocese of London. I allude to ten characteristics of a theology for and about children, all of which are expounded in my book Theology and Families which at the time had just been published.

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Listening to the Voices... of Families and Children (Opening Address at the Listen to the Voice…
This is the opening address to an Anglican Convention to which all Anglicans whose ministry is, in one way or another, with and to children. The convention was called Listening to the Voices… of Families and Children. It was held at Center Parcs, Sherwood Forest, near Nottingham, UK, in June 2007. It was one of several addresses I gave in that year, following ...

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Theology for Parents
I read this paper to a research seminar in the Theology Department at the University of Exeter in November 2006. It explores the analogy between parents and children, and the Heavenly Father and all God's children. It raises fascinating questions about who and what God is, how He/She/It/They is/are imaged, and as you might expect, self-giving love and ...

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Justice for Children Too?
I gave this lecture to the annual conference of the Modern Churchpeople's Union in July, 2006. Although I side with the progressive left of Christian social and sexual ethics, I have reservations about the contemporary use of justice in regard to sexual relationships. Its not that I don't think sexual relationships should not also be just: they must! It is ...

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From 'Body-and-Soul' to 'Persons-in-Relation' - an exhilarating journey
I gave this lecture at the annual conference of The Champernowne Trust for Psychotherapy and the Arts, at Buckland Hall, Brecon Beacons, Wales, in July, 2006. I was honoured to be invited to give a lecture as a theologian, since the Trust and its conferences exist ‘to promote emotional health through Jungian Psychotherapy and the Creative Arts’, and I have ...

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Theology for Children - New Directions
I gave this short lecture in March 2006 to a conference on theology and children at Mary Immaculate College, Limerick, Ireland, academically linked to the University of Limerick. It is a good introduction to my book Theology and Families which I was completing at the time.

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Continuity and Change in Theology and Ethics
I gave this lecture to the Truro Theological Society at the Chapter House of Truro Cathedral, in February 2006. One of the hardest problems in Christian theology is understanding how doctrine and practice changes over time. Indeed for some people the attraction of faith lies in the belief that neither changes at all. The lecture attempts an outline of how ...

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A Theology of Liberation for Children
I gave this lecture at New College, University of Edinburgh, in 2004, at the launch of the book 'Honouring Children: The Human Rights of the Child in Christian Perspective,' by Kathleen Marshall and Paul Parvis. The lecture includes a piece on how theology, which until recently has been guilty of gross child neglect, might think freshly about children. ...

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LIVING TOGETHER AND CHRISTIAN ETHICS – A Response to some Reviews
I gave this short paper to an audience at the Society for the Study of Theology, in Edinburgh, UK, in April 2003. It was a response to some comments in early reviews of my book, Living Together and Christian Ethics.

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Living Together
I gave this talk at Leicester Cathedral, UK, in March 2003, to an enthusiastic group of Christians who were involved, voluntarily, in family life and marriage education (FLAME). They were all well aware that 70% of marrying couples live together before marriage. I had just published my book Living Together and Christian Ethics, and this talk introduces ...

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Who am I?
This is a short presentation I gave to a colloquium at St. George's Chapel, Windsor, UK, on 'Civilizing Religion'. I was talking about human identity just two months after the death of my wife, Grace, from myelodysplasia. The short reflections range from identity in bereavement, individualization, globalization, multiple identities, to the ...

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Norms, Rules and Steadfast Love
I gave this lecture to the Centre for the Study of Christianity and Sexuality, in 2001. The distinction between norms and rules may sound dry and trivial, yet when it becomes blurred, it causes havoc within sexual ethics. I demonstrate this by comparing marriage as a norm with marriage as a rule.

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