School of Law | Our Research | Research Centres | Centre for Research in Political Theology (CRIPT)
Document Actions

Centre for Research in Political Theology (CRIPT)

CRIPT is a research centre created and co-directed by Birkbeck Law School academics and PhD students Anton Schütz, Massimiliano Traversino, Thanos Zartaloudis (now Kent Law School, thus now associate director), Marinos Diamantides and Piyel Haldar in connection with partner institutions, represented by Alberto Bondolfi (Trento) and Ghislain Waterlot (Geneva).

Point of contact: Dr Anton Schütz, School of Law, Birkbeck College


Through conferences and publications, the Centre aims to develop and promote research into the long-term genesis of Western institutions and the conundrums of political theology. It also attempts to offer an appropriate understanding of juridification as the core process of Western institutional history. It relates to the recently much-discussed problematic of political theology and secularization, focusing more centrally on the role of law and the normative system than in several otherwise closely related research programmes. The purpose of the Research Centre is to continue and if possible further expand its activity through conferences and conference publications.


  • The Centre will further develop already existing formal and informal institutional academic networks with the following departments/schools/foundations of three equally highly esteemed research institutions in three different countries:
  • - Università degli Studi, Trento, Dipartimento di Lettere e Filosofia; Centro per le Scienze Religiose alla Fondazione Bruno Kessler, Trento (Italy). Information (in Italian) about the inagural conference and the series as a whole can be found here.
  • - Université de Genève, Faculté de théologie protestante, Institut Romand de Systématique et d’Ethique, Genève (Switzerland). Information (in French) about the 2015 conference can be found here.
  • - Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg (Germany) and Leucorea, Stiftung Öffentlichen Rechts, Wittenberg (Germany)
  • The common feature of all three Universities cooperating with us is their close relation to post-16th century Christianity in the West; Wittenberg and Geneva being the birth-sites of the Lutheran and Calvinist Reform movements respectively, and Trento of the birthplace of modern, reformed (or 'counter-reformed') continental Catholicism.
  • The Centre comes about at the end of a period of intense research in the field undertaken by the above named. Part of this research has already taken form, mainly in a series of seven international conferences between June 2011 and November 2013, at Geneva University; in Nola near Naples, birthplace of the author epitomising best the articulation of the medieval and modern contributions to the issue of potentia dei, Giordano Bruno (1548-1600); in London, BBK Law and the Warburg Institute, at Trento University. See PUBLICATIONS section below for the published proceedings of these conferences.


  • 17-18 May 2018 From Wittenberg to Rome, and Beyond Giordano Bruno: Will, Power, and Being. Law, Philosophy, and Theology in the Early Modern Era, Bruno Festival III edition. International Colloquium, Seminar Room 10 (1st Floor), LEUCOREA Foundation, Collegienstraße 62, 06886 Lutherstadt Wittenberg. Download conference flyer and programme.
  • 17 May 2018 Giordano Bruno (1548-1600) Biographical Traces: A Life in Music. Concert by the Wittenberger Hofkapelle, also part of the Bruno Festival III.  Venue: Refectory, Luther House, Collegienstraße 54, 06886 Lutherstadt Wittenberg


  • 26-27 April 2018 From Wittenberg to Rome, and Beyond Giordano Bruno: Will, Power, and Being. Law, Philosophy, and Theology in the Early Modern Era, Bruno Festival III edition. Venue: Centre d’Etudes Supérieures de la Renaissance (CESR)
  • 8-26 September 2015. Theological Festival, 2nd edition - "Absolutism, Sovereignty and Toleration". Venues: Bolzano, Brixen, Trento, Verona and Trieste. Download the conference flyer (in English)
  • 28-29 May 2015. Festival Bruniano, II edition - "Giordano Bruno: La Loi et la Vicissitude". Venue: Geneva.  Download the conference flyer (in English) and the full programme (in French).
  • 10-14 September 2014. Theological Festival "Potestas, honor, charitas". Venue: Verona, Italy.
  • 20 - 23 February 2014.  Festival Bruniano - Verità e Dissimulazione. Venue: Nola.


  • (2015, forthcoming) Schütz, A & Traversino, M (textes réunis par),“Sit pro ratione voluntas”. L’âge moderne de la norme et la métaphysique de la volonté, Paris: Cerf.
  • (2015) Traversino, M (ed.), Verità e dissimulazione. L'infinito di Giordano Bruno tra caccia filosofica e riforma religiosa, Naples: Editrice Domenicana Italiana.
  • (2013) Schütz, A & Traversino, M (eds/a cura di) The Theology of Potentia Dei and the History of European Normativity / Alle origini dell'idea di normativismo. Il problema della Potentia Dei tra teologia e diritto pubblico europeo, 2 vols, “Divus Thomas” 115/2 (2012), 116/3


Steering Committee:

  • Marinos Diamantides
  • Piyel Haldar
  • Anton Schütz
  • Massimiliano Traversino
  • Thanos Zartaloudis

International Advisory Board:

  • Giorgio Agamben
  • Barbara Amato
  • Irena Backus
  • Elisabeth Blum
  • Paul Richard Blum
  • Alberto Bondolfi
  • Angelika Bönker-Vallon
  • Olivier Boulnois
  • Maurizio Cambi
  • Peter Goodrich
  • Jill Kraye
  • Roberto Lambertini
  • Jean-François Malherbe
  • Aniello Montano
  • Nick Heron
  • Bruno Pinchard
  • Paolo Prodi
  • Diego Quaglioni
  • Michel Rosenfeld
  • Boudewijn Sirks
  • Fabian Steinhauer
  • Gunther Teubner
  • Thomas Vesting
  • Ghislain Waterlot