Dr Barnabas Aspray


Dr Aspray is a philosophical theologian interested in the way religious belief and practice interact with contemporary society. His PhD (University of Cambridge) explored human finitude and transcendence in the work of French philosopher Paul Ricœur. Dr Aspray also holds Masters degrees in Christian Theology and Biblical Studies from the University of Cambridge and Regent College. Before studying theology, he read Computer Science at the University of Exeter and worked as a software engineer for the BBC website.

Faculty Research Area(s): 

Christian and Religious Ethics; Philosophical Theology

Research Interests:

Dr Aspray’s current research project is titled ‘Christian Responses to Refugees in Theory and Practice’. It aims to develop a Christian ethic of asylum and immigration by means of an encounter between philosophical theology and forced migration studies, informed by empirical research that listens to the stories of refugees and those working with them. This project is pursued in partnership with Refugee Education UK, a UK charity which helps refugee and asylum-seeking children and young people build more hopeful futures through education

Research Centres & Projects:

Dr Aspray is a member of the Religion and the Frontier Challenges research centre based in Pembroke College.


Podcast: http://faithatthefrontiers.com
REUK website: https://www.reuk.org

Publications & Research Outputs:


Barnabas Aspray, Ricœur at the Limits of Philosophy: God, Creation, and Evil (Cambridge University Press: 2022).


Journal Articles

Barnabas Aspray, ‘Jesus Was a Refugee: Unpacking the Theological Implications’, Modern Theology (online, forthcoming in print)

Barnabas Aspray, ‘Faith, Science, and the Wager for Reality: Meillassoux and Ricœur on post-Kantian Realism’, International Journal of Philosophy and Theology (online, forthcoming in print)

Barnabas Aspray, ‘New Challenges to Character Education’, Journal of Character and Leadership Development 10, no. 2 (2023): 49–59.

Barnabas Aspray, ‘A Throne Will Be Established in Steadfast Love’: Welcoming Refugees and the Davidic Kingdom in Isaiah 16:1-5’, Open Theology 7 (2021): 426–44.

Barnabas Aspray, ‘How Can Phenomenology Address Classic Objections to Liturgy?’, Religions 12, no. 4 (April 2021): 236.

Barnabas Aspray, ‘Y a-t-il une métaphysique ricœurienne ?’, Crossing: The INPR Journal 1 (2020): 73-83.

Barnabas Aspray, ‘“No One Can Serve Two Masters”: The Unity of Philosophy and Theology in Ricœur’s Early Thought’, Open Theology 5, no. 1 (2019): 320–332.

Barnabas Aspray, ‘“Scripture Grows with its Readers”: Doctrinal Development from a Ricœurian Perspective’, Modern Theology 35, no. 4 (2019): 746-759.



Emmanuel Falque, ‘The All-Seeing: Fraternity and Vision of God in Nicholas of Cusa’, Modern Theology 35, no. 4 (2019): 760-787.

Paul Ricœur, ‘From One Testament to the Other’, Modern Theology 33, no. 2 (2017): 235–42.


Chapter Contributions

Barnabas Aspray, ‘From Exegesis to Allegory: Ricœur’s Challenge to Biblical Scholarship’, in Reading Scripture with Paul Ricœur, ed. Joseph Edelheit and James Moore (Lanham: Lexington Press, 2021).

Barnabas Aspray, ‘Transforming Heideggerian Finitude? Following Pathways Opened by Falque’, in Transforming the Theological Turn: Phenomenology with Emmanuel Falque, ed. Martin Kočí and Jason Alvis (Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield, 2020).