Theology at the University of Pretoria – 100 years: (1917–2017) Past, present and future

Volume editor
Dirk J. Human


In this scholarly book, a century’s theology presented by the Faculty of Theology at the University of Pretoria, is celebrated. All authors are academics or research associates of the University of Pretoria. A historical and futuristic overview with perspectives from the past, present and future, are examined. The past is not only portrayed by means of societal and scientific contributions and achievements, but the authors also reflect on malfunctions, ill behaviour and disappointments of church and theology, presented at the University of Pretoria within the South African context over 100 years. The book commences with a chapter in which institutional transformation is discussed, as well as the changes that demonstrate the role of the Faculty of Theology within a secular state university. It includes an explanation of the importance of research impact, research productivity and research reputation. Among various discipline indicators, the category Theology and Religion Studies plays a significant role in the measurement of world university rankings of universities. With regard to scientific and encyclopaedic content, the book focuses on the theological disciplines presented in the academic curricula: first the biblical sciences (Old and New Testament Studies), then the historical disciplines (Systematic Theology, Church History and Church Polity), and finally the practical disciplines (Practical Theology, Science of Religion and Missiology). The role of Religion Studies in a newly established Faculty of Theology and Religion not only enhances the diversity of interreligious tolerance and an atmosphere of dialogue, but it serves as platform to interconnect with the fields of Humanities, Social and Natural Sciences and other academic disciplines. In the conclusive part of the book, contributions highlight the role of the centres in the Faculty (Centre for Contextual Ministry and Centre for Sustainable Communities), as well as the continental and international footprints of the two theological journals whose title ownership is attached to the Faculty of Theology of the University of Pretoria, namely HTS Theological Studies and Verbum et Ecclesia. The methodology comprised in all the chapters amounts to a literature and contextual study. Since the book describes the histories of formal academic departments, these texts are of a descriptive, interpretative and critical character. Reference is made in some chapters to exegetical methods, like the historical critical methods. The target audience of the book is academic scholars and theologians, who specialise in the different fields of Theology, the Humanities and other Social Sciences. The book is also accessible to scholars of other academic disciplines outside these disciplines. The book comprises original research by several authors and is not plagiarised from other scientific publications of this nature.

   Indexing services
   The chapters published in the book are included in:
   - Google Scholar
   - Google Books

   Archiving services
   The full text of the chapters are deposited in the following archives:
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   - Directory of Open Access Books, DOAB
   - Open Access Publishing in European Networks, OAPEN



  • Chapter 1: Rethinking research impact by Theology and Religious Studies with references to the Faculty of Theology at the University of Pretoria
    Johan Buitendag, Corneliu C. Simut
  • Chapter 2: Old Testament Studies at the University of Pretoria: Glimpses of the past and future
    Dirk J. Human, Alphonso Groenewald, E. E. Meyer, Ananda Geyser-Fouché, Sampson S. Ndoga, Gerda E. de Villiers
  • Chapter 3: Celebratory nostalgia: Reflecting on the work and impact of the Department of New Testament Studies at the University of Pretoria
    Hanré Janse van Rensburg
  • Chapter 4: Finding an academic voice in post-apartheid South Africa: Systematic Theology at the University of Pretoria
    Daniël P. Veldsman, Johan Buitendag, Willem Fourie, Tanya van Wyk
  • Chapter 5: Historical Theology: Content, methodology and relevance
    Wim A. Dreyer, Jerry Pillay
  • Chapter 6: The tradition of Practical Theology at the University of Pretoria
    Casparus J. Wepener, Yolanda Dreyer, Johann A. Meylahn
  • Chapter 7: Science of Religion and Missiology at the Faculty of Theology, University of Pretoria: Historical overview, theological discourses and future possibilities
    Cornelius J. Niemandt, Jaco Beyers
  • Chapter 8: Fathoming Religion Studies: Treading on the spider’s web
    Jaco Beyers
  • Chapter 9: Transforming curricula into the next century: Doing theology collaboratively with local communities
    Stephanus F. de Beer, Attie S. van Niekerk
  • Chapter 10: HTS Theological Studies/Teologiese Studies and Verbum et Ecclesia: South African accredited journals with footprint
    Dirk J. Human, Andries G. van Aarde, Daniël P. Veldsman


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