Austin Freeman, PhD

School of Christian Thought
  • Assistant Professor of Apologetics
  • Chair, Department of Apologetics


  • PhD, Systematic Theology, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School
  • MTh, Historical Theology, University of Edinburgh
  • BA, Religious Studies, Philosophy, Rhodes College

Courses Taught

Ancient Philosophy & Culture
Apologetics Research & Writing
Christian Theology & Traditions
The Hobbit & Theology
Literature & Apologetics
Medieval Philosophy & Culture
‘Mere Theology’ & Apologetics Implications
Theological Inquiry

Teaching Focus

Dr. Freeman’s research focus is cultural apologetics, and especially the intersection between theology and literature, and especially especially the theology of J.R.R Tolkien. But he is a broad interdisciplinary thinker, with publications on subjects ranging from Virgil to H.P. Lovecraft to angelology to evolution.


Academic Publications

  • Tolkien among the Theologians (Editor), Walking Tree Press (2024)
  • Theology, Fantasy, & the Imagination (Co-editor), Lexington Academic/Fortress (2023)
  • Tolkien DogmaticsTheology through Mythology with the Maker of Middle-earth, Lexham Press (Nov 2022)
  • Theology and H.P. Lovecraft (Editor), Lexington Academic/Fortress (August 2022)

Peer-Reviewed Articles

  • “The Author of the Epic: Tolkien, Evolution, and God’s Story,” Zygon: Journal of Religion and Science special issue, “Evolution, Original Sin, and the Fall,” 2021.
  • “Flesh, World, Devil: Evil in J.R.R Tolkien,” Journal of Inklings Studies, vol. 10, no. 2 (2020): 139-172.
  • “Celestial Spheres: Angelic Bodies and Hyperspace,” TheoLogica: An International Journal for Philosophy of Religion and Philosophical Theology, vol. 2, no. 2 (2018), 168-186. 

Peer-Reviewed Chapters

  • “Calvin and Tolkien: A Surprising Confluence?” Tolkien among the Theologians, Walking Tree Press (2024)
  • “Ted’s Chestertonian Optimism,” Ted Lasso and Philosophy, Blackwell (2023)
  • “Sins of the Imagination,” Theology, Fantasy, and the Imagination, Lexington Academic/Fortress (2023)
  • “‘The Backs of Trees’: Tolkien’s Romantic Eco-Theology,” Tolkien & Romanticism, Walking Tree Press (2023)
  • “Critiquing Tolkien’s Theology,” Tolkien & Theology, Vol. 1, Lexington Academic/Fortress (2023)
  • “Mythos & Mythopoeia: Lovecraft & Tolkien on the Transcendent Function of Fantasy,” Theology & H.P. Lovecraft, Lexington Academic/Fortress (2022)
  • Pietas and the Fall of the City: A Neglected Virgilian Influence on Tolkien’s Chief Virtue,” Tolkien and the Classical World, Walking Tree Press (2020)
  • “Gods upon Gods: Hierarchies of Divinity in the Marvel Universe,” Theology and the Marvel Universe, Lexington Books (2019)

Additional Information

Dr. Freeman was involved in the classical school movement for many years and continues to encourage graduating students to consider teaching at one.