Understanding the Political Culture of Hong Kong

Understanding the Political Culture of Hong Kong : The Paradox of Activism and Depoliticization

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This book challenges the widely held belief that Hong Kong's political culture is one of indifference. The term "political indifference" is used to suggest the apathy, naivete, passivity, and utilitarianism of Hong Kong's people toward political life. Taking a broad historical look at political participation in the former colony, Wai-man Lam argues that this is not a valid view and demonstrates Hong Kong's significant political activism in thirteen selected case studies covering 1949 through the present. Through in-depth analysis of these cases she provides a new understanding of the nature of Hong Kong politics, which can be described as a combination of political activism and a culture of depoliticization.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 312 pages
  • 152 x 229 x 24.64mm | 580.6g
  • Taylor & Francis Inc
  • M.E. Sharpe
  • Armonk, United States
  • English
  • tables, bibliography, index
  • 0765613131
  • 9780765613134

Table of contents

Introduction: Hong Kong, Rethinking Political Activism; 1. A Critique of the Claims on Political Indifference; 2. An Alternative Understanding of Political Participation; 3. A Multiple Case Interpretive Approach; 4. Rebutting the Minimal Political Participation Claim; 5. Rediscovering Politics: Hong Kong between 1949 and 1959; 6. Rediscovering Politics: Hong Kong in the 1960s; 7. Rediscovering Politics: Hong Kong in the 1970s; 8. Political Discourses and Political Activism; 9. The Culture of Depoliticization and Political Activism; 10. Conclusion; Epilogue
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Review quote

"This book not only debunks the myth of political apathy of the Hong Kong Chinese--an old and absolutely outdated argument made by a few psychoculturalists who constantly view the Hongkongers as possessing a 'partial vision of democracy'--but also uses numerous case studies to prove that Hongkongers were politically active. The protests by half a million Hong Kong people on July 1, 2003 against the Tung Chee-hwa government undoubtedly corroborated the validity of Lam's major argument."
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