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Michael Cameron

Professor of TheologyMichael Cameron

“I work in a field called historical theology, which refers to the analysis of belief and practice of Christianity and its great thinkers through the ages. My interest is centered on how the Bible has been read and received within the history of Christianity, also known as ‘reception history’. Most biblical resources focus on the composition of the Bible, so reception history is an emerging area of scholarship. Recently I have served as one of the editors of a massive new reference work being published in 30 volumes, The Encyclopedia of the Bible and Its Reception.

My scholarly work focuses on the life and work of the prolific and influential North African thinker, bishop, and saint, Augustine of Hippo, particularly studying the way he read the Bible.

I first read Augustine’s most famous book, The Confessions, as an undergraduate, and as he narrated his path of conversion and crossed the threshold into Christianity, I crossed over with him. I have personally practiced and professionally studied Christianity ever since. My interest in Augustine led me to research and write the book, Christ Meets Me Everywhere: Augustine’s Early Figurative Exegesis, published in 2012. It covers the first 15 years of his Christian life, a time when his way of understanding the Bible was deeply influenced by changes in his understanding of the humanity of Christ.

I want students to realize that we all think within a tradition and therefore need to learn to think in terms of history. But it can be difficult to include them in my research since so much of it depends on reading ancient texts in Greek and Latin, not to mention modern works in French and German. However, I was able to draw on the work of undergraduates in my book, Unfolding Sacred Scripture: How Catholics Read the Bible, which was published in 2015.”

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