Archive 2019
     
             
     

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

An Ethnographic Movie Screening

Migrant Women Domestic Workers and Their Plights

Friday 6 December 2019, 6:30pm (Earlier time due to film length)
Hong Kong Museum of History
Lecture Hall, Ground Floor, 100 Chatham Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

There are 11.7 million migrant domestic workers around the globe (ILO, 2015), predominantly women from developing countries. Their mistreatment is a global phenomenon as 60% have suffered verbal abuse, 18% physical and 6% sexual abuse (Mission for Migrant Workers, 2013). With over 350,000 migrant domestic workers, accounting for 10% of the total workforce of the city, there is much concern about this issue in Hong Kong. Despite their large number, migrant domestic workers face abuse, debt bondage, as well as racial and religious discrimination. Therefore, to help raise awareness on this issue, a movie screening on Indonesian domestic workers in Hong Kong will be held. Inspired by Jean Rouch's method of ethnographic cinema, the film was produced together with the people represented in it to best portray their lived experiences. The screening will be followed by a panel discussion on the migrant women domestic workers in Hong Kong's situation. Eni Lestari, Alberto Gerosa, Ju-chen Chen, and an Indonesian domestic worker in Hong Kong will answer questions raised by the movie screening and discuss the difficulties that women migrant workers in the world face. The goal of this event is to empower these women by showing the people of Hong Kong the invisible side of their lives and the various kinds of abuse they have to suffer.

Ju-chen CHEN is a senior lecturer at the Department of Anthropology, the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Eni Lestari is the chairperson of the International Migrant Alliance and also Indonesian migrant domestic worker.

Alberto Gerosa is an anthropologist and filmmaker, whose work has been acquired by the National Museum of Ethnology in Japan, Pinacoteca Civica di Como in Italy, Hong Kong Film Archive, Tai Kwun Centre for Heritage and Arts.


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

An Anthropological Talk by Jeffrey Andrews and Dixon

Beyond Stereotypes: Ethnic Minority Voices in Present Day Hong Kong

Friday 8 November 2019, 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History
Lecture Hall, Ground Floor, 100 Chatham Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

While Hong Kong is known as one of the most cosmopolitan and multicultural cities in Asia, there are few opportunities for the city's ethnic minorities to voice their experience of living in the city to the public. At times, this lack of voice can result in negative stereotyping of ethnic minorities across mainstream culture and in the media. An important question to ask is "Can Hong Kong become a more inclusive global city? What challenges exist in the pursuit of such goals?" In this dialogue, Jeffrey Andrews and Dixon will give a talk about their personal experience as ethnic minorities and as activists striving to improve the well-being of Hong Kong's ethnic minority communities. Both Jeffrey and Dixon will focus on changes in Hong Kong over the past five years and the challenges these have presented for their work. This talk seeks to build bridges of communication between different ethnic groups that move us beyond stereotypes towards a more inclusive Hong Kong of the future.

Jeffrey Andrews is a registered social worker at Christian Action, an organization focused on providing material and emotional support to Asylum Seekers in Hong Kong.

Dixon is the organization secretary at African Community Hong Kong, which promotes participation and community cohesion between African immigrants and Hong Kong society.


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

An Anthropological Talk by Yang Zhan

Beyond Neoliberal Urbanism? Gentrifying Informal Housing in Shenzhen

Friday 25 October 2019, 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History
Lecture Hall, Ground Floor, 100 Chatham Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

Over the past decade, Chinese metropolitan cities, Shenzhen included, have utilized large scale gentrification campaigns via land appropriation and demolition of old neighborhoods as their strategy for urban redevelopment. The effort has produced the financialization of the urban property market. In Shenzhen, these newly gentrified neighborhoods have been too expensive for a vast number of young technical workers to rent or own. A new scheme of "comprehensive improvement" was thus introduced in 2018. Rehabilitation and formalization of informal housing in urban villages, instead of sweeping demolition, is now the focus. This new experiment unavoidably displaces low-income rural migrant workers, a long-time mainstay of informal housing renters, and clearly targets young professionals, nicknamed "junior white-collars" as future potential renters. This talk unpacks this new mode of housing development in Shenzhen and discusses the meaning of shifting from financialization of homeownership to financialization of a rental housing market in contemporary China.

Yang Zhan is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Applied Social Sciences at Hong Kong Polytechnic University. She holds a Ph.D. from the State University of New York at Binghamton. She is a cultural anthropologist by training.


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

An Anthropological Talk by Lynne Nakano

Single in the City: Unmarried Women and Their Families in Hong Kong, Shanghai and Tokyo

Friday 27 September 2019, 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History
Lecture Hall, Ground Floor, 100 Chatham Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

In East Asia's largest cities, hundreds of thousands of women are remaining single into middle-age and beyond. Their cumulative actions to delay marriage or remain indefinitely single represent an enormous change in women's life course pathways given that previous generations of women married nearly universally and within a prescribed age range. This talk explores women's experience of singlehood in three East Asian cities that are home to large numbers of single women: Shanghai, Hong Kong and Tokyo. Based on ethnographic research and interviews with over 100 single women in the cities of Shanghai, Hong Kong and Tokyo, the speaker will show how the organization of care services in families profoundly shapes single women's experiences and how single women in these cities find meaning in their lives in unexpected ways.

Lynne Nakano is professor in the Department of Japanese Studies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong. She has published on volunteerism in Japan, and on single women and family change in Japan, Hong Kong, and Shanghai. She is currently working on a project on special education in Japan.


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

An Anthropological Talk by John Whelpton

Aftershocks: The Political Effects of Earthquakes in Nepal

Friday 5 July 2019, 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History
Lecture Hall, Ground Floor, 100 Chatham Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

Earthquakes, like other natural disasters, have effects on societies which go beyond the loss of life and the physical destruction caused. This issue is addressed in Andrew Robinson's Earth Shattering Events (2016), with case studies including the Lisbon disaster of 1755 and the Tianjin earthquake of 1976 and also in Edward Simpson's The political biography of an Earthquake, which deals with the 2001 Gujarat disaster. The 1934 earthquake that devastated the Kathmandu Valley, precipitated a purge within the ruling Rana family and the handling of the relief operation contributed to discontent within the army during WWII. The 2015 earthquake led to the fasttracking of a new, controversial constitution for Nepal, which largely ignored the demands for an ethnically-based federal structure. The talk looks at these two episodes and more briefly at earthquakes in 1833 and 1988, concluding that the similarities of response of internal and external on each occasion are not as strong as first appears but that the disasters did hasten the pace of change.

John Whelpton is an honorary research associate of the Catholic Studies Centre at the Chinese University of Hong Kong and is also a member of London University's SWAY project, investigating the 2015 and earlier earthquakes. His publications on Nepal include A History of Nepal (Cambridge University Press, 2005) and 'The Limits of Nationalism: Political Identity in Nepal and the British Isles' (European Bulletin of Himalayan Research, 2018, available at https://linguae.weebly.com/limits-of-nationalism.html.


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

An Anthropological Talk by Royce Ng

Asian Opium Empires: Manchukuo, Zomia & Hong Kong

Friday 21 June 2019, 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History
Lecture Hall, Ground Floor, 100 Chatham Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

Since 2016, artist Royce Ng has created a series of immersive performances which incorporate post-digital animation, electro-acoustic sound environments, holograms and lectures to narrate the political economy of modern Asia via the history of opium. Each piece focuses on the role that opium played in the development of a different Asian state; the Japanese colony of Manchukuo, the mountainous regions of Southeast Asia collectively known as Zomia and Hong Kong. In this performance lecture, Royce Ng will perform excerpts from two pieces interspersed with commentary on his research process. The first piece 'Kishi the Vampire' (2016) narrates the life of Japanese war criminal, opium profiteer and prime minister Nobusuke Kishi, while the second chapter, Queen Zomia (2018) focuses on Olive Yang a transsexual opium warlord in the 1950s' Burma.

Royce Ng is an artist currently based in Hong Kong. From 2013-2016 he was artist-in-residence at the Johann Jacobs Museum in Zurich with the anthropologist Daisy Bisenieks. In 2015, their work was selected to represent Australia at PERFORMA in New York City. The second chapter of his 'Opium Museum' trilogy 'Queen Zomia' premiered in Europe at Kampnagel Internationale Zentrum für schönere Künste in Hamburg in 2018.


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

An Anthropological Talk by Chip Colwell

Can We Decolonize Museums?

Friday 10 May 2019, 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History
Lecture Hall, Ground Floor, 100 Chatham Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

The modern museum presenting human cultures is the product of centuries-long historical and political forces. For example, the inclusion of Indigenous peoples in natural history museums is the result of a colonialist attitude that Indigenous peoples are close to nature as much as colonialist power dynamics that enabled settlers to strip subjected peoples of their cultural treasures. Today, the model of museums as driven by colonial and capitalist forces is undergoing serious challenge. Indigenous peoples no longer accept serving as the subject of museums: They are demanding active inclusion and participation. But what will the museum of the future look like? Through the lens of the United States, this talk illuminates why an answer to that question is both strangely elusive and vitally necessary.

Chip Colwell is Senior Curator of Anthropology at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. He has published 11 books, most recently Plundered Skulls and Stolen Spirits: Inside the Fight to Reclaim Native America's Culture (University of Chicago Press). He is the founding Editor-in-Chief of Sapiens.org, an online magazine about anthropological thinking and discoveries.


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

An Anthropological Talk by Danilyn Rutherford

Sharing Senses in the Social Worlds of the Severely Disabled

Friday 26 April 2019, 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History
Lecture Hall, Ground Floor, 100 Chatham Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

The ability to see what another is seeing is the first step towards understanding what another is saying, according to most accounts of normal language development. A long tradition of western theory has built its account of the emergence of sociality on sight: language, and social life more generally, begins with the visual capacity to imagine the world from another's point of view. But there are other ways people sense themselves through the senses of another, which come into play in social worlds where people don't use their minds and bodies in typical ways. In this paper, I draw on my research among parents with adolescent children who don't make eye contact or use conventional signs. I explore some of the ways touch becomes social in these settings, by focusing on the feeling of one's own body in space. In sensing the self as another, participants in these interactions develop a sense of the other as a self.

Danilyn Rutherford is President of the Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research. She received her bachelor's degree in biology and history from Stanford University and her doctorate in anthropology from Cornell University, and has taught at Goldsmiths College in London, the University of Chicago, and the University of California, Santa Cruz.


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

An Anthropological Talk by Venera Khalikova

Healthy Food, Taste, and Identity: Thinking About the Transformation of Ayurveda in a Globalised India

Friday 22 March 2019, 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History
Lecture Hall, Ground Floor, 100 Chatham Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

When falling sick, many Indians consult the doctors of Ayurveda - an ancient South Asian tradition, which promotes health and longevity through medicines, good lifestyle, and diet. Recently, expanding beyond medicine, Ayurveda has become part of a growing food industry that includes everything from honey and spices to biscuits, ketchup, and instant noodles - products that are neither particularly "ayurvedic" nor nutritionally healthy. In this talk, Dr. Khalikova examines the ideologies of Ayurvedic consumption in India to theorize how food gets to be recognized as "healthy", both in the sense of personal and national health. She then analyzes the category of healthy food in the context of taste and globalization, putting forward the notion of gastro-bilingualism to explain how the appeal of Ayurvedic products arises from their capacity to meet the concerns of Indian consumers over health and cultural identity while also allowing them to indulge in pleasurable globalized consumption.

Venera R. Khalikova is a medical anthropologist, who is interested in alternative medicine, food, nationalism, body, and gender, especially in India and the Himalayas. Currently, she is working on a book manuscript that investigates the ideologies of health and cultural belonging in India as shaped by the government policy on traditional medicine and the global market of herbal pharmaceuticals. Dr. Khalikova holds a Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Pittsburgh, USA and is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Department of Anthropology, the Chinese University of Hong Kong.


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

An Anthropological Talk by Priscilla Song

Biomedical Odysseys: The Global Quest to Cure the Incurable

Friday 22 February 2019, 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History
Lecture Hall, Ground Floor, 100 Chatham Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

In a world where technologies and risks move faster than laws can keep pace, thousands of people from more than eighty countries have journeyed to China to undergo fetal and stem cell transplantation. HKU medical anthropologist Priscilla Song tells the story of these global quests to cure the incurable, exploring why and how American and European patients suffering from neurodegenerative conditions have entrusted their lives to neurosurgeons in China. Bringing together a decade of anthropological research in hospital wards, laboratories, and online patient discussion forums, Song's award-winning book Biomedical Odysseys offers a powerful account of the promise and perils of the new biology. Song humanizes stem cell therapies and illustrates how poignant journeys for cures become entangled in China's rapidly changing healthcare landscape.

Dr. Priscilla Song is Assistant Professor in the Centre for the Humanities and Medicine at the University of Hong Kong. Trained as an anthropologist at Harvard University, her research examines the culture and ethics of transnational biomedical technologies in urban China. Her book Biomedical Odysseys: Fetal Cell Experiments from Cyberspace to China (Princeton University Press 2017) received the 2018 Francis Hsu Book Prize from the Society for East Asian Anthropology.


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

An Anthropological Talk by Ulf Hannerz

Returning to Nigeria: An Adventure in Literary Anthropology

Friday 18 January 2019, 7:00pm
Hong Kong Museum of History
Lecture Hall, Ground Floor, 100 Chatham Road, Tsim Sha Tsui

Since the 1950s, Nigeria has had a lively literary scene, with a number of internationally recognized authors. A recurrent feature in much of this writing has been an openness to the world outside: to Great Britain, the colonial power, to begin with, and then increasingly to the United States. To a degree, this reflects the openness in real life; for one thing, one now finds Nigerian traders at work in Guangzhou.

Professor Hannerz did field research in a Nigerian town in the 1970s and 1980s, and has continued to follow the literary scene. This lecture is about his current experiment in literary anthropology, relating varieties of Nigerian writing over time to his field experience, with some emphasis on the theme of transnational openness.

Ulf Hannerz is Professor Emeritus of Social Anthropology, Stockholm University, and has taught at several American, European and Australian universities. He is a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, the Austrian Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a former Chair of the European Association of Social Anthropologists. His research has been especially in urban anthropology, media anthropology, and transnational cultural processes, with field studies in West Africa, the Caribbean, and the United States. A study of the work of news media foreign correspondents drew on field studies in Jerusalem, Johannesburg, and Tokyo.

 

 
       
   
       

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