Wednesday, November 9, 2022

Dr. Yang Fenggang

Fenggang Yang is originally from China, earned a BA from Hebei Normal University in 1982 and an MA in Philosophy from Nankai University in 1987. He became a professor at Renmin University of China in Beijing teaching religious studies.

He came to the United States in 1989, earned his PhD in Sociology from the Catholic University of America in Washington DC in 1997. His dissertation-turned book is Chinese Christians in America, published in 1999.

After doing postdoctoral research in Houston and teaching at the University of Southern Maine, he came to Purdue University 20 years ago. Currently he is Professor of Sociology and Director of Center on Religion and the Global East at Purdue University.

He was elected the President (2014-15) of the Society for the Scientific Study of Religion (

His research focuses on immigrant religion in the US and religious change in China. He is the author or editor of more than a dozen books. The most recent ones published last year Christian Social Activism and Rule of Law in Chinese Societies (Lehigh University Press) and Shades of Gray in the Changing Religious Markets of China (Brill).

Among his numerous journal articles, two won distinguished article awards: “Transformations in New Immigrant Religions and Their Global Implications” (American Sociological Review 66 (2): 269- 288) and “The Red, Black, and Gray Markets of Religion in China” (Sociological Quarterly 47: 93-122).

He has given many invited lectures and keynote presentations at major universities and professional associations in the US, Asia and Europe.

His media interviews have appeared on the National Public Radio, New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, Economist, CNN, BBC, ABC, etc.