Profile

Alexander Chow is an American-born Chinese who was raised in Southern California. He completed his PhD in theology at the University of Birmingham (UK), followed by a postdoctoral fellowship at Renmin University of China (Beijing), where he was doing research in Chinese Christianity and teaching in the School of Liberal Arts. Alex joined the University of Edinburgh in September 2013 and is currently a Lecturer in Theology and World Christianity. He is also an associate editor of Studies in World Christianity, an academic journal published through Edinburgh University Press.

Alex has written a number of articles on Christianity in China, and more broadly, in East Asia. His first book, Theosis, Sino-Christian Theology and the Second Chinese Enlightenment (Palgrave Macmillan, 2013), explores historical types of indigenous theology in China and constructively uses the Eastern Orthodox doctrine of theosis as a point of dialogue with the Chinese context.

What is World Christianity?

Generally speaking, ‘World Christianity’ speaks about the developments of the global expanse of Christianity, although it tends to imply Christianity in the non-Western world (i.e., Africa, Asia, and Latin America) and Christianity amongst non-Western diasporic communities in the West (e.g., British Chinese Christianity). My particular area of focus is Asia, with most of my research dealing with Mainland China (though I have also published more broadly around East Asia).

There are Christians in China?

Yes.  The first archaeological evidence of Christianity in China can be traced back to the 7th century, when the Church of the East entered via the silk roads.  There would subsequently be major waves of Roman Catholic (16th century) and Protestant (19th century) missionaries who entered China, as well as a small group of Russian Orthodox (17th century) as well.  Protestant Christianity is often identified as the fastest growing religious tradition in China today.