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Academic Research, Lecturing, Writing

The older and sicker you get, the less your body is a fashion item, the less people want to touch you. You will have to pay. Masseurs and prostitutes will caress you, if you give them money. How many therapies these days happen to involve the “laying-on of hands”? Nurses will handle the sick. Doctors spend their lives touching bodies…Priests and politicians tell people what to do with their bodies. People always choose their work according to their preferences about bodies.

Hanif Kureishi in The Body

I completed a Masters in Practical Theology (Narrative Therapy) at the University of Pretoria and later a Ph.D. in Systematic Theology (theological anthropology) at the Vrije Universiteit (VU), Amsterdam as part of the National Research Foundation/ Desmond Tutu Scholarship Program. As a research associate at the University of Pretoria and now at the University at Stellenbosch, South Africa I lecture, publish and present my interdisciplinary research which focuses on the embodied sensing of meaning,  Ubuntu, storytelling, and social justice. This is an interdisciplinary project where theology is in dialogue with other disciplines like philosophy, psychology, sociology and cognitive science and literature.

I have lectured on my own research and body theology to the Masters students on Gender & Health at the theology faculty, Stellenbosch as well as on  bodymapping, sexual abuse, burnout and human flourishing  to students in narrative therapy at Coram Deo Pastoral Centre, Pretoria. I am also involved in the project for Social Justice & Reconciliation at the Centre for Contextual Ministry, UP.  


  • Meiring, J., 2016, ‘How does justice smell? Reflections on space and place, justice and the body’, HTS Teologiese Studies/Theological Studies 72(1), a3492. http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v72i1.3492
  • Meiring, J., 2016, ‘Theology in the flesh – Embodied sensing, consciousness and the mapping of the body’, HTS Teologiese Studies/Theological Studies 72(4),a3429. http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v72i4.3429
  • Meiring, J., 2016, ‘Shem, Ham, Japheth and Zuma – Genesis 9:25-27 and masculinities in South Africa’, Stellenbosch Theological Journal 2016, Vol 2, No 1, 223–240 DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17570/stj.2016.v2n1.a11
  • Meiring, Jacob 2015. ‘Theology in the flesh – a model for theological anthropology as embodied sensing’. HTS Teologiese Studies/Theological Studies 71(3), Art. #2858, 8 pages. http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/hts.v71i3.2858
  • Meiring, J.J.S., 2015, ‘Ubuntu and the body: A perspective from theological anthropology as embodied sensing’, Verbum et Ecclesia 36(2), Art. #1423, 8 pages. http://dx.doi.org/10.4102/ve.v36i2.1423
  • An auto-etnographic piece have been published by Hugenote Press (Bybelmedia) as part of the book, “gaygelowig” [gay believer], compiled by Marietjie van Loggerenberg in time for the General Synod of The Dutch Reformed Church in October 2015
  • Meiring, J.J.S., 2014, ‘Theology in the flesh: Exploring the corporeal turn from a southern African perspective’, PhD thesis, Department of Theology, Vrije Universiteit.
  • Meiring, J. & Müller, J.C., 2010, ‘Deconstructing the body: Body theology, embodied pastoral anthropology and body mapping’, Verbum et Ecclesia 31(1), Art. #367, 7 pages.DOI: 10.4102/ve.v31i1.367