Archive 2010
     
             
     

THE HONG KONG ANTHROPOLOGICAL SOCIETY
AND THE HONG KONG MUSEUM OF HISTORY
PRESENT

Joseph Bosco
Child Kidnapping: An Analysis of Rumor Among Expatriates in Hong Kong

9 December Thursday 2010 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History
Lecture Hall, Ground Floor, 100 Chatham Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

This talk focuses on a rumor spread by e-mail in March 2010 in Hong Kong that said that a small Western boy came close to being kidnapped by two Chinese women. The story spread very rapidly, and was discussed on online forums and eventually on the front page of the City section of the South China Morning Post. How did an isolated rumor with little basis in fact become so widely circulated? Why did this rumor, with an unlikely storyline, seem believable? This talk argues that the kidnappers were a personalization of the health and other perceived dangers that expatriate residents face in Hong Kong, and that the rumor reflects chasms of "race" and social class that characterize Hong Kong life today.

Joseph Bosco is an Associate Professor of Anthropology at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. His research interests range from rugby to ghosts to consumer culture.

For more information, please contact Stan Dyer on 9746 9537.


HONG KONG LATIN CIRCLE

The first meeting of the Hong Kong Latin Circle will be held on Friday 3 December at 7 p.m. in The Railway Tavern, G/F., 4-6 Chik Luk Lane,Tai Wai. The objective is to talk in Latin for one hour but we will also welcome those who just want to listen. There will, of course, be no ban on communicating in Chinese or English with the bar staff!
Conversation on all topics will be allowed, but it will perhaps be easier if everyone speaks at the start about the job they do (or used to do) in Hong Kong and about other countries they have lived in before.
See http://linguae.weebly.com/circulus-latinus-honcongensis.html for a map showing the pub's location.

For further information visit that site or contact John Whelpton at jfwhelpt@hkstar.com or on 93696180.


THE HONG KONG ANTHROPOLOGICAL SOCIETY AND THE HONG KONG MUSEUM OF HISTORY

Travis S. K. Kong

Migrant Male Sex Workers in China

10 November 2010 Wednesday 7 pm
Hong Kong Museum of History

As part of a massive rural-to-urban migrant population in contemporary China, rural male migrants are increasingly joining the sex industry which offers same-sex sexual services to other men. Based on continuous ethnographic research since 2004 in Beijing, Shanghai, and Shenzhen, this talk examines how these young men are caught up in the web of domination and power due to the three interlocking identities of being rural migrants, prostitutes, and men who have sex with men. The talk explores how they negotiate their identities under the confines of the dominant ideal of urban citizenship in China today.

Travis S.K. Kong is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of Hong Kong, where he teaches sexuality, queer theory, media and cultural studies. He has written the recent book Homosexualities: Memba, Tongzhi, and Golden Boy, which discusses homosexuality, male identity and prostitution in different Chinese locales within the constellation of global culture.

THE HONG KONG ANTHROPOLOGICAL SOCIETY AND THE HONG KONG MUSEUM OF HISTORY

Colin Smith

Alienation and Countercultural Performance in Postindustrial Tokyo

7 October 2010 Thursday 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History

Over the past fifteen years a large population of young part-time workers called freeters has emerged in urban Japan as the service sector has expanded and companies have scaled back recruitment of new graduates in response to a prolonged period of sluggish growth. In recent years, growing disaffection with this situation has bubbled to the surface in the form of a new social movement composed largely of freeters, freelancers, and temporary workers. Using the heart of Tokyo as their stage, they have put on a number of public protests known as "sound demos" which incorporate rave music, dancing, costumes, and floats, elements that are associated more with carnival and spectacle than with serious political protest. This talk presents the historical and political-economic background of this new kind of protest, and from an anthropological perspective considers the meaning and politics of its seemingly contradictory style.

Colin Smith, is a faculty member in the Department of Sociology at the University of Hong Kong. Before that, he was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Tokyo.


THE HONG KONG ANTHROPOLOGICAL SOCIETY AND THE HONG KONG MUSEUM OF HISTORY

So Fun Hang

Between Two Homes: On the Lives and Identities of Pakistani Women in Hong Kong and Pakistan

16 September 2010 Thursday 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History

In this talk, I discuss the lives of Pakistani women in Hong Kong and Pakistan. Over the course of my research, I have come to know well a number of Pakistani women in Hong Kong, and have had the chance to accompany them back to their homes in Pakistan. During these trips, I saw how these women are totally different people in the two societies: They are pious Muslims in Pakistan, and are middle-class, owning land and properties, but still feel uneasy about some aspects of that society; they are lower class in Hong Kong, and are culturally excluded and racially discriminated against, but may like Hong Kong for its freedom and economic opportunities. How do these Pakistani women think about their double lives in Hong Kong and Pakistan? How do they make sense of their lives in two different places? What ties them to Hong Kong, and where do they feel, ultimately, is their home?

So Fun Hang is currently completing her M.Phil dissertation in anthropology at The Chinese University of Hong Kong.


THE HONG KONG ANTHROPOLOGICAL SOCIETY AND THE HONG KONG MUSEUM OF HISTORY

Christine Yau

Mainland Chinese as "Scapegoats" in Hong Kong Today

8 July 2010 Thursday 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History

Hong Kong has been a part of mainland China for over a decade, but many mainland Chinese still feel left out of Hong Kong society. Hong Kong often proclaims itself as "a cosmopolitan society" or "a society of immigrants," yet mainland Chinese continue to be discriminated against by Hong Kong Chinese. Mainland Chinese are blamed as "parasites" in Hong Kong mass media, and are culturally excluded as "outsiders," despite being officially portrayed as "compatriots." Why? In this talk, I explore this issue through studying Hong Kong Chinese daily practices and discourses, particularly in terms of demeanor and body language, and what they can reveal about Hong Kong cultural identity and ongoing senses of "the Chinese other."

Christine Yau is an M.Phil. student in the Dept. of Anthropology at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.


THE HONG KONG ANTHROPOLOGICAL SOCIETY AND THE HONG KONG MUSEUM OF HISTORY

Eric Cheng Siu-kei

Adopting a New Lifestyle: Formation of a local organic food community in Hong Kong

17 June 2010 Thursday 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History

This presentation is about a community of organic food producers, distributors and consumers in Hong Kong. In the process of Hong Kong's rapid urbanization, these people are concerned about the consequences of over-development, the unequal marketing system of local agricultural products and the failure of government policy on the environment. My research examines the initiation of a new lifestyle social movement, in which the participants adopt the concept of "organic" in their daily life and in the process of food production and processing. They emphasize consumption with an awareness of environmentalism, support for marginalized groups and encourage face-to-face human relationships. I argue that the new "organic" lifestyle is an immediate response to the changing China-Hong Kong relationship and the impacts of global capitalism.

Cheng Siu-kei is an M.phil graduate from the Division of Humanities, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. He is currently a research assistant in South China Research Center. His research interests include agricultural communities and the environmentalist network in the South China region.


THE HONG KONG ANTHROPOLOGICAL SOCIETY AND THE HONG KONG MUSEUM OF HISTORY

Brevis Chan

Hong Kong Migrants in the Netherlands

13 May 2010 Thursday 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History

The concept of home in diaspora has long been of interest of anthropologists: where do migrants feel they belong? In this talk, the speaker will share his findings from his research on a group of Hongkongers who migrated to the Netherlands in the 1960s and 1970s. This talk will explore how the first-generation Hong Kong migrants' ideas of home are shaped by the concept of lineage as well as their migratory experience from a gender perspective, in contrast with the flexibilities of the "home" ideas shared among the second-generation migrants, who may have no sense of where home ultimately might be.

Brevis Chan is an M.Phil. graduate from The Department of Anthropology, The Chinese University of Hong Kong. His research interests include the interpretations of place and space, migration and transnationalism.


THE HONG KONG ANTHROPOLOGICAL SOCIETY AND THE HONG KONG MUSEUM OF HISTORY

Kabir Mansingh Heimsath

Living in the New Tibet
How Lhasa Residents Deal with Modernization

30 April 2010 Friday 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History

Many representations of Tibet have the tacit premise that the 'real' Tibet is traditional and anything modern is only a Chinese degradation of its authentic culture. The speaker's experience and research shows that this isn't necessarily the case: the current process of  modernisation is not simply a one-way street to destruction. Rather, Tibetans play an active role in creating new lives and spaces in the city of Lhasa. This talk seeks to illustrate the ways in which the city and its Tibetan residents interrelate with and influence one another.

Kabir Mansingh Heimsath is currently completing his DPhil in Anthropology from the University of Oxford. He has studied and worked with Tibetans on both sides of the Himalayas in a number of capacities since the early 1990s and has been exploring issues of urbanisation in Lhasa with photographs and scholarly research over the past decade.


THE HONG KONG ANTHROPOLOGICAL SOCIETY AND THE HONG KONG MUSEUM OF HISTORY

Valerie Wilson Trower

Visible Difference: The fashion dress of expatriate Western women in Hong Kong

19 March 2010 Friday 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History

In Hong Kong, much has been published on pre-modern (traditional) Chinese dress, but no attention has been paid to the dress of the expatriate Western women who have lived here from its inception. This paper looks at the fashion dress of this group of women between 1960 and 1997, contextualising their experience in a rapidly changing Hong Kong.
How did they remain 'fashionable?' How did they cope with shortage and non-availability of Western fashion garments? How did their dress reflect the unique advantages that location in S.E. Asia gave them? Why did they dress as they did? What effect did this have on them and their dress? Drawing on oral history research, I explore how Fashion dress reflects the changing identities of expatriate Western women.

Dr. Valerie WILSON TROWER holds a doctorate from The London College of Fashion, The University of the Arts, London. She is an international fashion professional with a background in design, retailing, and marketing.


THE HONG KONG ANTHROPOLOGICAL SOCIETY AND THE HONG KONG MUSEUM OF HISTORY

John Whelpton

Twilight of the Gods: The Demise of the Monarchy in Nepal

4 February 2010 Thursday 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History

Nepal, home country to one of Hong Kong's major ethnic minorities, in 2008 completed its transition from Hindu monarchy to secular republic, achieved by an alliance between parliamentary political parties and Maoist rebels brokered by the government of India. The talk looks at the end of the Shah dynasty, whose kings were, descendants of the 18th century founder of modern of Nepal and were once regarded as incarnations of Vishnu. It also considers the light this sheds on conceptions of kingship and political power in South Asia and beyond.

John Whelpton is a Native English-speaking Teacher at Baptist Lui Ming Choi Secondary School in Shatin and an honorary research associate at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. A student of Nepalese history and politics for 30 years, he is the author of A History of Nepal, (Cambridge University Press, 2005) and co-editor of Nationalism and Ethnicity in Nepal (Vajra Publications, 2008).


THE HONG KONG ANTHROPOLOGICAL SOCIETY AND THE HONG KONG MUSEUM OF HISTORY

Ivette Vargas-O'Bryan

Demon Diseases, Doctors and Monks: Taking Religion Seriously for Medicine

21 January 2010 Thursday 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History

With new diseases emerging over time, competing healing philosophies are now capturing our attention. Options from TCM, Tibetan and biomedical facilities to local healers reflect diverse cultures and belief systems. Healing traditions with religious flavor attract attention. A recent conference in Guangzhou on Chinese ethnic medicine illustrates the marketing value of Tibetan pharmacopeia.

Locally, there is evidence of a hierarchy of resort as to treatment for conditions deemed to have spiritual dimensions and not easily curable allopathically. Drawing from historical and anthropological research, I explore how religion intersects with healing from Tibetan and South Asian perspectives revealing a nuanced view of medicine in the 21st century.

Ivette Vargas-O'Bryan is a Fulbright Visiting Associate Professor of Religion in the Department of Asian and International Studies at City University of Hong Kong. She has done extensive research on illness, religion and medicine in Asia.

 
       
   
       

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