The Madras College Archive


Former Pupil Biographies

Professor Duncan Baillie Forrester (1933 - current)

Duncan Baillie Forrester, Church of Scotland missionary in Madras, India and theologian, was born in Edinburgh on 10 November 1933. He was educated at St Andrew's University (1951-1955) then spent a year at Chicago University (1955-56). After working in industry for a year he went to Edinburgh University in 1957 to study for the ministry and graduated BD in 1960. He was licensed by the Presbytery of St Andrew's in 1960 and started work at St James' Mission and Hillside Church.

In 1961 he went to Madras with the Church of Scotland and was Professor of Politics in Madras Christian College until his return to Scotland in 1970. Forrester had been ordained in India in 1962 but he returned to a largely academic life. He was first chaplain but also lecturer at the University of Sussex (1970-1978, receiving a D Phil in 1976), then Professor of Christian Ethics and Practical Theology at Edinburgh University where he also acted as Dean of the Faculty of Divinity and was Director of the Centre for Theology and Public Issues for a period. Forrester received a ThD from the University of Iceland in 1997 and a DD from Glasgow University in 1999. He has published widely, his particular interest being in Indian politics and religion and in ethics and political theology. He retired from Edinburgh University in 2001.

In 1951 D B Forrester appears in the school magazine as one of "The Choice and Master Spirits", the senior pupils in the school.  He was in the Rugby 2ndXV, was secretary of the Literary and Debating Society and had been awarded a Madras Bursary to United College, St Andrews University. In 1983 Professor Forrester delivered the sermon at the sesquicentennial service of commemoration and rededication at his old school, Madras College, St Andrews.