Blake Victor Kent, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor of Sociology
(805) 565-6783

Office Location

Deane Hall 209

Office Available

Monday 3:15-4:45 PM and Tuesday 1:00-2:30 PM and by appointment.


Sociology of Religion, Social Epidemiology, Life Course, Quantitative Methods.

Research Interests
  • Subjective religion and spirituality
  • Mental health
  • Flourishing
  • Religious struggles
  • Diverse populations

Blake Victor Kent is Assistant Professor of Sociology at Westmont College, as well as Research Associate at the Harvard Medical School/Massachusetts General Hospital Center on Genomics, Vulnerable Populations, and Health Disparities and Non-Resident Scholar at Baylor University’s Institute for Studies of Religion. He currently serves on the boards of Review of Religious Research and the Public Health, Religion, and Spirituality Network. His research is centered on associations between religion/spirituality and mental and physical health, with particular attention given to subjective religious and spiritual experiences, particularly attachment to God. His current interdisciplinary projects utilize data drawn from five racially and ethnically diverse U.S. cohort studies participating in the National Consortium on Psychosocial Stress, Spirituality, and Health, with the goal of identifying how religion and spirituality affect disease etiology in diverse populations. His work has appeared in Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion, Health Psychology, Quality of Life Research, Ethnicity & Health, Research on Aging, Journal of Aging & Health, and others, and has received national attention in outlets such as Forbes, Huffington Post, and Christianity Today.  He is married to Rachel, and when their two young boys allow it, he enjoys camping, running, scuba diving, soccer, and reading novels.


In Press 

Cowden, Richard, Victor Counted, Blake Victor Kent, and Ward Davis. “Resource Loss and Suffering During the COVID-19 Pandemic: Moderating Effects of Positive Religious Coping in a Prospective Sample of U.S. Adults with Chronic Illness.” Mental Health, Religion, & Culture.

Isehunwa, Oluwaseyi, Erica Warner, Donna Spiegelman, Ying Zhang, Julie Palmer, Alka Kanaya, Shelley Cole, Shelley Tworoger, Lester Orville Shields, Yue Gu, Blake Victor Kent, Immaculata De Vivo, and Alexandra E. Shields. “Depression, Religiosity, and Telomere Length in the Study on Stress, Spirituality, and Health.” International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction.  

Isehunwa, Oluwaseyi, Erica Warner, Donna Spiegelman, Shelley Tworoger, Blake Victor Kent, Nicholas Spence, and Alexandra Shields. “The Association between Religion, Spirituality, and Salivary Rhythms of Cortisol and DHEA in Postmenopausal Women.” Comprehensive Psychoneuroendocrinology.  

Kent, Blake Victor and Matt Bradshaw. “Adolescent Context and Depressive Symptom Trajectories in a National Sample: Ages 13 to 34.” International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction.

Stroope, Samuel, Blake Victor Kent, Ying Zhang, Donna Spiegelman, Alka M. Kanaya, Namratha Kandula, Anna B. Schachter, and Alexandra E. Shields. "Mental Health and Self-Rated Health among U.S. South Asians: The Role of Religious Group Involvement."  Ethnicity & Health. 


Bradshaw, Matt, Blake Victor Kent, James C. Davidson, and Stacy de Leon. “Parents, Peers, and Trajectories of Cigarette Smoking: A Group-Based Approach.” Youth & Society 53(4):676-694.

Kent, Blake Victor, W. Matthew Henderson, Matt Bradshaw, Christopher G. Ellison, and Bradley R.E. Wright. “Do Spiritual Experiences Moderate the Effect of Daily Stressors on Psychological Well-Being?: An Experience Sampling Study of Depressive Symptoms and Flourishing.” International Journal for the Psychology of Religion 31(2):57-78.

Kent, Blake Victor, James C. Davidson, Ying Zhang, Ken Pargament, Tyler J. VanderWeele, Harold Koenig, Lynn Underwood, Neal Krause, Alka M. Kanaya, Shelley Tworoger, Anna B. Schachter, Shelley Cole, Marcia O’Leary, Yvette Cozier, Martha L. Daviglus, Tracey Zacher, and Alexandra E. Shields. “Religion and Spirituality among American Indian, South Asian, Black, Hispanic/Latina, and White Women in the Study on Stress, Spirituality, and Health.” Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 60(1):198-215.

Ngo, Long, M. Austin Argentieri, Simon Dillon, Blake Victor Kent, Alka M. Kanaya, Towia Libermann, and Alexandra E. Shields. “Plasma Protein Expression Profiles, Cardiovascular Disease, and Religious Struggles among South Asians in the MASALA Study.” Scientific Reports 11(1):961-977.

Warner, Erica T.,  Blake Victor Kent, Ying Zhang, M. Austin Argentieri**, Wade Rowatt, Kenneth Pargament, Harold Koenig, Lynn Underwood, Shelley Cole, Martha Daviglus, Alka Kanaya, Julie Palmer, Tianyi Huang, Mark Blais, Alexandra E. Shields. “The Study on Stress, Spirituality, and Health (SSSH): Psychometric Evaluation and Initial Validation of the SSSH Baseline Spirituality Survey.” Religions 12(3):150.


Kent, Blake Victor. “Religion/Spirituality and Gender-Differentiated Trajectories of Depressive Symptoms Age 13 to 34.” Journal of Religion and Health 59(4):2064-2081.

Kent, Blake Victor, Samuel Stroope, Alka M Kanaya, Ying Zhang, Namratha Kandula, and Alexandra E. Shields. “Private Religion/Spirituality, Self-rated Health, and Mental Health among U.S. South Asians.” Quality of Life Research 29(2):495-504.

Stroope, Samuel, Blake Victor Kent, Ying Zhang, Alka M. Kanaya, Namratha Kandula, and Alexandra E. Shields. “Self-Rated Religiosity/Spirituality and Four Health Outcomes Among U.S. South Asians.” Journal of Nervous & Mental Disease 208(2):165-168.


Bradshaw, Matt, Blake Victor Kent, W. Matthew Henderson, and Anna C. Setar. “Attachment to God and Social Trust.” Sociological Perspectives 62(6):1001-1021.

Kent, Blake Victor and Christopher M. Pieper. “To Know and Be Known: An Intimacy-Based Explanation for the Gender Gap in Biblical Literalism.” Journal for the Scientific Study of Religion 58(1):231-250.


Bradshaw, Matt and Blake Victor Kent. “Prayer, Attachment to God, and Psychological Well-being in Later Life.” Journal of Aging and Health 30(5):667-691.  

Kent, Blake Victor, Matt Bradshaw, and Jeremy E. Uecker. “Forgiveness, Attachment to God, and Mental Health Outcomes in Older U.S. Adults: A Longitudinal Study.” Research on Aging 40(5):456-479.