Skip to Main Content
Liberal Arts Education Transformation For Life
Start main Content
A banner image of website



Assistant Professor
BA (Peking University); MA (Notre Dame); PhD (Yale)

  Office: WYL108, Dorothy Y L Wong Building
Department of Sociology and Social Policy
Lingnan University, Tuen Mun, Hong Kong
  TEL: (852) 2616 7655
  FAX: (852) 2456 0737

I obtained my Ph.D. from the Department of Sociology, Yale University in 2014. I joined Lingnan University in August 2018.  Before then, I had taught at the National University of Singapore for over four years.

I research on the social contexts and dynamics of history making, whether the historical agents are revolutionaries, intellectuals, entrepreneurs, technological innovators, or ordinary people who participate in social transformations. My past and ongoing research encompasses events and processes that have shaped political modernity in China and Europe, including the May Fourth Movement, the Chinese Communist Revolution, the Chinese Cultural Revolution, and religion and state formation in early modern Europe. Aside from publishing articles, I am currently writing a book manuscript, examining the performativity of politics in the Chinese Cultural Revolution and its legacy in modern politics. While I am writing on these epoch-making changes, I have also embarked on a new research on the underexplored social aspects of technological innovations in contemporary era, with particular attention to lifestyle change and class dynamics in the age of internet of things and blockchain economy. My goal is to shed sociological light onto these changes while enriching sociological theories in the process. 

I currently teach Introduction to Sociology, Contemporary Social Theory, Society and Social Change.

Research | Top

Social theory
Comparative historical analysis
Culture and power
Technology and society


Publications : | Top

Refereed Articles | Top

Xu, Xiaohong (2018) “The Origins and Growth of the Chinese Communist Movement,” Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Asian History 2018 (03).

Xu, Xiaohong (2017) “Dialogic Struggle in the Becoming of the Cultural Revolution: Between Elite Conflict and Mass Mobilization,” Critical Historical Studies 4(2): 209-42.

Xu, Xiaohong (2013) “Belonging Before Believing: Group Ethos and Bloc Recruitment in the Making of Chinese Communism,” American Sociological Review 78 (5): 773-796.


Book Chapters | Top

Xu, Xiaohong and Philip Gorski (2012) “The Cultural of the Political: Toward a Cultural Sociology of State Formation,”, in Handbook of Cultural Sociology, edited by John Hall, Laura Grindstaff and Ming-Cheng Lo, Routledge, pp. 535-46.
(Updated version, in 2nd edition, forthcoming in 2018.)

Xu, Xiaohong and Lyn Spillman (2010) “Political Centers, Progressive Narratives, and Cultural Trauma: Coming to Terms with the Nanjing Massacre in China, 1937-1979”, in Northeast Asia’s Difficult Past: Essays in Collective Memory, edited by Barry Schwartz and Mikyoung Kim, Palgrave-Macmillan, pp.101-28.

Working Papers | Top

Xu, Xiaohong, Ivan P. L. Png, Junhong Chu, and Yeh-Ning, Chen, “When Things Were Falling Apart: Tocqueville, Fei Xiaotong and the Agrarian Causes of the Chinese Revolution” (July 16, 2018). Available at SSRN:

Xu, Xiaohong and Isaac A. Reed. “Unravelling the Revolution: The Performance of Politics in China (1966-1968)”.

Conference Presentations (while at Lingnan) | Top

Xu, Xiaohong, 2018, “When Things Were Falling Apart: Tocqueville, Fei Xiaotong and the Agrarian Causes of the Chinese Revolution,” and “Unravelling the Revolution: The Performance of Politics in China (1966-1968)”, Social Science History Association annual meeting, Phoenix, Arizona, USA, November 8-12, 2018

Xu, Xiaohong, 2018, “Unravelling the Revolution: The Performance of Politics in China (1966-1968),” Conference on “Power & Governance: Forms, Dynamics, Consequences”, Tampere, Finland, 27-29 August 2018

Xu, Xiaohong, 2018, “The Meaningfulness of Comparison: A Macro-Phenomenological Exploration”, Workshop on post-positivist comparative methods, Yale University, August 3, 2018. 

Ad Hoc Journal Reviewer | Top

American Sociological Review
American Journal of Sociology
Qualitative Sociology
Nations and Nationalism
Sociology of Religion
Current Sociology
Modern China
Stanford University Press
Routledge Press


  Teaching Subjects | Top

Academic Year:  2018-2019:

1st Term:


Introduction to Sociology

2nd Term: SSC3202 Contemporary Sociological Theory


SOC3204 Society and Social Change




> Top