Dr. Peter Riddell

Academic Vice Principal of MST
BA – DipEd – GradDipDiv – PhD

Peter completed his PhD at the Australian National University, focusing on Islam in Southeast Asia. He studied Qur’anic Exegesis at L’Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes/Sorbonne (Paris) and held a post-doctoral fellowship at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

He has previously taught at the Australian National University, the Institut Pertanian Bogor (Indonesia), the London School of Oriental and African Studies, and was appointed as Professor of Islamic Studies at the London School of Theology, where he served from 1996-2007 as the founding Director of the Centre for Islamic Studies and Muslim-Christian Relations. In addition to his present MST appointment, Peter is also a Professorial Research Associate in the Department of History, SOAS, University of London.

Peter has published widely on Southeast Asia, Islam and Christian-Muslim Relations. His books include Transferring a Tradition (Berkeley, Centers for South and Southeast Asian Studies, Univ. California, 1990); Islam and the Malay-Indonesian World: Transmission and Responses (London, Hurst, 2001); Islam in Context (with Peter Cotterell, Grand Rapids, Baker, 2003); and Christians and Muslims: pressures and potential in a post-9/11 world (Leicester, IVP, 2004). His next book will be a historical study of the Qur’an in Southeast Asia, to be published by Brill Publishers in 2017.

Area of Study

  • Intercultural Studies
  • Research Interests

    I have supervised over 30 doctoral and research master theses over the last 20 years in universities and theological colleges. My research interests lie in the fields of Islamic Studies and Christian-Muslim Relations. My specific interests are as follows:

    Qur’anic Studies
    I wrote my PhD thesis on Qur’anic exegesis, focusing on the earliest commentary on the Qur’an in Malay and its classical Arabic sources. Three of my published books are in the field of Qur’anic Studies, addressing areas such as Qur’anic textual history, variant readings, exegesis and thematic issues.

    Islam in Southeast Asia
    My geographical area of specialisation is Islamic Southeast Asia: Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei. Within that region my area of interest lies in historical theology and contemporary political movements. I have published extensively on this area.

    Christian-Muslim Relations (CMR)
    I have published widely on this topic, both books and journal articles. I am especially interested in CMR in Southeast Asia, Britain and Europe. I am a member of the core team of the international Christian-Muslim Relations Bibliographical Project, managed by the University of Birmingham and published by Brill Publishers.

    Recent Publications


      “Qur’ anic Concepts of Believer and Unbeliever, with particular reference to Sura al-Kahf”, Al-Bayan: Journal of Qur’an and Hadith Studies.

      “Reading the Qur’ān Chronologically: An Aid to Discourse Coherence and Thematic Development”, chapter for Festschrift in honour of Prof. Andrew Rippin, Brill.

      Malay Court Religion, Culture and Language: Interpreting the Qur’ān in 17th Century Aceh, Leiden: Brill.

      “The Implanting of Islam in Southeast Asia”, in I. Donoso (ed.), The Easternmost Islamic Edge: Insights into Philippine Cultural History, Manila: Vibal Publishing House.

      (with D. Pratt) “Christians and Muslim in East Asia and Australasia”, in D. Thomas (ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Christian-Muslim Relations, Oxford: Routledge.


      (with M. J. Nazir-Ali) “Islam and Christianity”, New Dictionary of Theology: Historical and Systematic, Leicester: IVP, 2016, 459-62