Hong Kong University Press, HKU

Echoes: Classics of Hong Kong Culture and History

Published by: Hong Kong University Press, HKU


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Echoes: Classics of Hong Kong Culture and History


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Chinese Christians

Elites, Middlemen, and the Church in Hong Kong

Carl T. Smith

Every so often a work of history appears that radically changes our understanding of people, place and period. Chinese Christian is such a work. This book asks questions about Hong Kong that have never been asked before. It shows that the leaders of Chinese society had a far greater role in shaping early Hong Kong history than earlier historians had believed.

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The Hong Kong Region 1850-1911

Institutions and Leadership in Town and Countryside

James Hayes

First published in 1977, The Hong Kong Region is a historical reconstruction of village and township society in Hong Kong’s New Territories between 1850 and 1911. In a detailed study drawing on documentary sources and intensive fieldwork, James Hayes argues for the part taken by ordinary peasants and shopkeepers in running their own communities. It was they who dealt virtually unaided with routine administration of local affairs and with every form of disaster, natural or man-made, that visited their communities. The gentry and imperial bureaucracy, in contrast, played almost no role. In a substantial new introduction written for this Echoes reprint, James Hayes reviews the research behind The Hong Kong Region and assesses its wider implications for our understanding of traditional Chinese society in the light of later scholarly studies.

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Power and Charity

A Chinese Merchant Elite in Colonial Hong Kong (with a new preface)

Elizabeth Sinn

Through the history of a charitable institution, the Tung Wah Hospital, Elizabeth Sinn reshapes and greatly deepens our understanding of the evolving interactions between the Chinese community in Hong Kong and the colonial rulers.

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Road, The

Austin Coates

Set in 1950s Hong Kong, The Road paints an evocative picture of comfortable colonial life, while at the same time presenting the local people with the shrewd understanding that the author had acquired as District Offi cer in rural Hong Kong.

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Thistle and Bamboo

The Life and Times of Sir James Stewart Lockhart

Philip J Dykes

Colonial civil servant, Confucian scholar, and collector of Chinese art, Sir James Stewart Lockhart spent more than forty years in Hong Kong and Weihaiwei — the former British leased territory in northern China. His career reflects tension and upheaval in the emerging colony of Hong Kong and in a China rapidly giving way to civil war. In her vivid biography of Stewart Lockhart, Shiona Airlie presents a portrait of an imperial official who fought against racism, strove to preserve the Chinese way of life, and was treated by Chinese mandarins as one of their own. Sir James Stewart Lockhart (1858–1937) was a Scot who served for more than 40 years as a colonial official in Hong Kong and Weihaiwei — Britain’s leased territory in northern China. In Hong Kong (1879– 1902) he rose to the highest levels and brought a refreshingly different approach to colonial rule. He immersed himself in Chinese culture, made friends with local leaders, strengthened Chinese institutions, and fought against racism. When the colony was extended in 1898 he was given the important task of delineating the boundaries of the New Territories and organising its administration. As Britain's first Civil Commissioner (1902–21) in remote Weihaiwei, he brought a unique approach to administration — a combination of Scottish laird and Confucian mandarin — and maintained peace and order during troubled times. A fine Chinese scholar, he amassed a large collection of Chinese coins, art and artefacts. Shiona Airlie's lively account of Stewart Lockhart's life and times makes use of his private papers and extensive archival research. This classic study provides valuable insight into the character, career and friends of an imperial official of rare talent and achievement.

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Via Ports

From Hong Kong to Hong Kong

Alexander Grantham

Sir Alexander Grantham became Governor of Hong Kong in 1947 and served until 1957. His term of office saw rapid reconstruction and growing prosperity after World War II. Civil war and revolution in China drove hundreds of thousands of refugees into the British colony, while tense relations between Britain and the new People’s Republic gave rise to difficult and potentially explosive incidents in Hong Kong. Plans for democratic reform were quietly dropped as Grantham instead crafted an authoritarian form of government that combined strong leadership with gradual social reform – a system that lasted almost to the end of colonial rule. In this elegant memoir, first published by the Hong Kong University Press in 1965, Grantham describes his thirty-five years in the British colonial service, which began in Hong Kong in 1922 and ended here in 1957; he also held senior positions in Bermuda, Jamaica, Nigeria and the South Pacific. Only a few of Hong Kong’s former governors have published anything about their terms of office here, but Grantham’s stands out as the most interesting and substantial. Via Ports is an important first-hand account of the workings of Britain’s colonial system. It also contains vivid, often amusing anecdotes about life behind the scenes in Government House during the long twilight of the British Empire.


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