Hong Kong has become a by-word for all that is modern and sparkling in Asia today.
Yet tourist brochures still play with the old cliche of Hong Kong as a place where 'East meets West'. Images of so-called 'traditional' China, junks sailing Victoria Harbour or old women praying to gods in smoky temples, mingle with those portraying Hong Kong as a consumer and business paradise.
This collection of essays attempts to transcend the old polarities. It looks at modern Hong Kong in all its splendour and diversity in the run-up to its re-absorption into Greater China in mid-97, through the mediums of film, food, architecture, rumours and slang.
It explores the question of a distinct, modern Chinese identity in Hong Kong, and even when it explores the traditional stamping ground of the older anthropology in the New Territories it finds a dramatically changed context, in particular for women.
This collection presents an intriguing insight into the process of transition from 'tradition' to 'modernity' in this Modern Chinese Metropolis.
Asia today is one of the most dynamic regions of the world. The previously predominant image of ‘timeless peasants’ has given way to the image of fast-paced business people, mass consumerism and high-rise urban conglomerations. Yet much discourse remains entrenched in the polarities of East versus West’, ‘Tradition versus Change’. This series hopes to provide a forum for anthropological studies which break with such polarities. It will publish titles dealing with cosmopolitanism, cultural identity, representations, arts and performance. The complexities of urban Asia, its elites, its political rituals, and its families will also be explored.