Chris Southgate is based on the edge of Dartmoor, Devon, England. He works at the University of Exeter as a Professor in Theology.



Chris has been publishing his poetry since 1985. He is the author of nine collections of poetry, including a verse biography of T.S. Eliot – A Love and its Sounding (Salzburg, 1997). Chris has won a number of awards for poetry. He was also commended in the 2009 National Poetry Competition, and shortlisted for the 2022 Bridport Prize.

Chris’s poetry collection ‘Losing Ithaca’ (Shoestring 2023) is now available from or by emailing Chris on .

This book is being launched at present – EXETER LAUNCH Nov 29 2023, St Stephen’s Church, High St, Exeter, 7-9pm.

He has also published ‘Rain Falling by the River: new and selected poems of the Spirit’, (Canterbury Press).


Chris co-edited the regional poetry magazine Otter from 1989-96. He has also edited the journal Reviews in Science and Religion, and the important textbook on the science-religion debate God, Humanity and the Cosmos.

From 2023 Chris has taken over the editorship of the Journal of the T.S. Eliot Society (UK).


Chris has taught at the University of Exeter since 1993. His main fields of study are the science-religion debate, ecotheology and environmental ethics. He welcomes enquiries from prospective research students. His recent exploration has been of divine glory, leading to the book Theology in a Suffering World: Glory and Longing (Cambridge University Press, September 2018).

His current teaching includes the modules ‘Evolution, God and Gaia’, and ‘Big Questions in Science and Religion’. His book The Groaning of Creation: God, Evolution and the Problem of Evil (Westminster John Knox Press, 2008) has been described as ‘quite excellent’ (Church Times)

From 2017-21 Chris was Project Director for a major new project in practical theology, aimed at identifying good practice after a congregation has suffered a sudden tragedy. For details see This project was funded by the Templeton World Charities Foundation Inc.

Chris convenes a project funded by the British Academy on suffering and struggle in non-human nature. See for details.


From 2018-20 Chris was also Principal Investigator on a scientific project entitled ‘Cooperation and interpretation in the emergence of life’. This project was funded by the John Templeton Foundation.