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Desiring Hong Kong, Consuming South ChinaTransborder Cultural Politics, 1970-2010$
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Eric Kit-wai Ma

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9789888083459

Published to Hong Kong Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.5790/hongkong/9789888083459.001.0001

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Re-discovering national spatiality and diversity in South China

Re-discovering national spatiality and diversity in South China

(p.163) 8 Re-discovering national spatiality and diversity in South China
Desiring Hong Kong, Consuming South China

Eric Kit-wai Ma

Hong Kong University Press

This chapter examines the political effects of the rising Chinese nation on Hong Kong people travelling and working in South China. It focuses on the cultural politics of re-nationalization, and thus a politics built on assimilation. In the colonial years, a de-nationalized Hong Kong identity was constructed through the cultural differentiation between modern Hong Kong and less-modern China. Since 1997, state-initiated ‘national identity’ programmes in Hong Kong and the high-speed marketization of South China have altered the boundary of Hong Kong versus China in the Hong Kong popular imagination. Based on ethnographic studies in bars, factories, and residential estates, the chapter explores the increasing integration of Hong Kong and Mainland China. The people of Hong Kong and South China are producing a regional hybridized culture that is gradually overcoming the sharp boundaries once drawn by many Hong Kong people vis-à-vis their Chinese neighbours; the binary of Hong Kong/China is being replaced by pluralized points of reference (north, south, urban, rural China) under the catch-all discourse of the great nation of market-driven post-socialist China.

Keywords:   Hong Kong, China, national identity, colonialism, marketization, cultural integration, regionalism, hybridity

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