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Durham University

Email and Telephone Directory

Staff Profile

Dr Frances Clemson

Lecturer in Theology and Ministry in the Department of Theology and Religion
Telephone: +44 (0) 191 33 43949
Room number: Etchells House B8a
Assistant Professor in Theology and Ministry in the Common Awards Team
Telephone: 0191 33 43949

Contact Dr Frances Clemson (email at


My post is part of the Common Awards partnership between Durham University and the Church of England. Through this partnership the University validates Common Awards qualifications in Theology, Ministry and Mission offered by the Church in colleges and courses across the country. A key part of my work is the development of collaborative research into the nature of theological education.

My other main research interests are Anglican thought and theology and the arts, especially drama. Current work in progress includes a monograph on the theology and dramatic works of Dorothy L. Sayers (1893-1957) and a study of the representation of resurrection in the theatre and in theology.

Prior to arriving in Durham in September 2014, I was a Research Associate and Affiliated Lecturer in the Faculty of Divinity at the University of Cambridge, where I taught modern Christian theology. At Cambridge I also worked within the Cambridge Inter-faith Programme (CIP) helping to co-ordinate projects with Jewish, Christian and Muslim community leaders and scholars.

Research Supervision

Lead supervisor -

Kevin Antlitz: Drama and Bodily Formation in the Eucharist and in Mission

Andy Kinsey: Pneumatological Pedagogy and Receptivity in Theological Education for Ministry

Kathryn Naylor: The Ascension in Theology and Art

Supervisor -

Kathryn Goldsmith: Prayer Book Ritual Practices

Lu Skerratt: Queer Priestly Presence and the B/body of Christ at the Eucharist

Recently Completed -

Enya Doyle: 'Let My Voice be Heard: Barriers to Gender Diversity and Inclusion in Anglican Cathedral Music' (2020)

David Merrill: 'Divine Allurement: Beauty in the Theological Vision of Thomas Traherne' (2017)

Adam Shaeffer: 'Spiritual Formation in Tolkien’s Legendarium' (2017)

Research Interests

  • Modern Christian Theology
  • Theology and the Arts
  • Worship and Liturgy
  • Theological Education
  • Theology and the Body
  • Sexuality and Marriage
  • Anglican Theology

Teaching Areas

  • THEO2461: Research Project and Colloquium: Creativity and the Arts in Modern Theology
  • THEO2551: Create, Image, Enact: Christian Theology and the Arts
  • THEO3232: Dissertation
  • THEO41930: Anglican Theology in Context
  • TMMC2301: Topics in Christian Doctrine
  • TMMC3187: Theologies of the Majority World


Authored book

Edited book

Chapter in book

  • Clemson, Frances (2020). Plays. In The Oxford Handbook of Christmas. Larsen, Timothy Oxford University Press.
  • Clemson, Frances (2019). Doing Justice to the Past: Time, Drama and Peacebuilding. In Peacebuilding and the Arts. Culbertson, Hal, Hawksley, Theodora, Mitchell, Jolyon & Vincentt, Giselle Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Clemson, Frances (2016). Taking Time Over Marriage: Tradition, History and Time in Recent Debates. In Thinking Again About Marriage: Key Theological Questions. Bradbury, John & Cornwall, Susannah SCM.

Media Contacts

Available for media contact about:

  • Theology: Contemporary use of arts in the Christian Church
  • Theology: Christian Drama