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Travel Guide 2   >   Hong Kong   >   History

   
 

Hong Kong Chinese History


Here are some books about the history of Hong Kong:


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Books about Hong Kong Chinese History


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Modern History of Hong Kong, A: 1841-1997

By Steve Tsang

I.B.Tauris
Released: 2007-07-30
Kindle Edition (356 pages)

Modern History of Hong Kong, A: 1841-1997
 
Product Description:
This major history of Hong Kong tells the remarkable story of how a cluster of remote fishing villages grew into an icon of capitalism. The story began in 1842 with the founding of the Crown Colony after the First Anglo-Chinese war - the original ‘Opium War’. As premier power in Europe and an expansionist empire, Britain first created in Hong Kong a major naval station and the principal base to open the Celestial Chinese Empire to trade. Working in parallel with the locals, the British built it up to become a focus for investment in the region and an international centre with global shipping, banking and financial interests. Yet by far the most momentous change in the history of this prosperous, capitalist colony was its return in 1997 to ‘Mother China’, the most powerful Communist state in the world.



Steve Tsang, drawing on a vast array of official and private sources, both Chinese and European, traces the development of the classic Crown Colony government with its Governors, elite Administrative Officers and non-elected Executive and Legislative Councils, and British-based legal and education systems. Whilst this structure sheltered and nurtured the astounding economic take-off, the vital engine of this development was the mass-immigration of Chinese - hard-working, entrepreneurial, quick to absorb Western ideas while retaining Chinese traditions - blending with expatriate European business interests. The author goes on to examine the effect of the trauma of invasion and defeat at the hands of the Japanese in the Second World War, the stirrings of democracy, the beginnings of Hong Kong identity and the growing influence of China. The story culminates in the saga of the end of the empire with the emotional hauling down of the Union flag and the raising of China’s colours.

HONG KONG Country Studies: A brief, comprehensive study of Hong Kong

By CIA

Zay's Place
Released: 2012-02-12
Kindle Edition (16 pages)

HONG KONG Country Studies: A brief, comprehensive study of Hong Kong
 
Product Description:
A brief yet detailed report on the country of Hong Kong with updated information on the map, flag, history, people, economics, political conditions in government, foreign affairs, and U.S. relations.

Pacific Crossing: California Gold, Chinese Migration, and the Making of Hong Kong

By Elizabeth Sinn

Hong Kong University Press
Paperback (472 pages)

Pacific Crossing: California Gold, Chinese Migration, and the Making of Hong Kong
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During the nineteenth century tens of thousands of Chinese men and women crossed the Pacific to work, trade, and settle in California. Drawn initially by the gold rush, they took with them skills and goods and a view of the world which, though still Chinese, was transformed by their long journeys back and forth. They in turn transformed Hong Kong, their main point of embarkation, from a struggling infant colony into a prosperous international port and the cultural center of a far-ranging Chinese diaspora. Making use of extensive research in archives around the world, Pacific Crossing charts the rise of Chinese Gold Mountain firms engaged in all kinds of transpacific trade, especially the lucrative export of prepared opium and other luxury goods. Challenging the traditional view that the migration was primarily a “coolie trade,” Elizabeth Sinn uncovers leadership and agency among the many Chinese who made the crossing. In presenting Hong Kong as an “in-between place” of repeated journeys and continuous movement, Sinn also offers a fresh view of the British colony and a new paradigm for migration studies.

Golden Boy: Memories of a Hong Kong Childhood

By Martin Booth

Thomas Dunne Books
Released: 2006-11-14
Kindle Edition (352 pages)

Golden Boy: Memories of a Hong Kong Childhood
 
Product Description:

At seven years old, Martin Booth found himself with all of Hong Kong at his feet. His father was posted there in 1952, and this memoir is his telling of that youth, a time when he had access to the corners of a colony normally closed to a "Gweilo," a "pale fellow" like him.

His experiences were colorful and vast. Befriending rickshaw coolies and local stallholders, he learned Cantonese, sampled delicacies such as boiled water beetles and one-hundred-year-old eggs, and participated in vibrant festivals. He even entered the forbidden Kowloon Walled City, wandered into a secret lair of Triads, and visited an opium den.

From the plink-plonk man with his dancing monkey to the Queen of Kowloon (a crazed tramp who may have been a Romanov), Martin Booth saw it all---but his memoir illustrates the deeper challenges he faced in his warring parents: a broad-minded mother who embraced all things Chinese and a bigoted father who was enraged by his family's interest in "going native."

Martin Booth's compelling memoir, the last book he completed before dying, glows with infectious curiosity and humor and is an intimate representation of the now extinct time and place of his growing up.

Captain Elliot and the Founding of Hong Kong: Pearl of the Orient

By Jon Bursey

Pen and Sword History
Released: 2018-06-01
Hardcover (296 pages)

Captain Elliot and the Founding of Hong Kong: Pearl of the Orient
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On 26 January 1841 the British took possession of the island of Hong Kong. The Convention of Chuanbi was immediately repudiated by both the British and Chinese governments and their respective negotiators recalled. For the British this was Captain Charles Elliot, whose actions in China became mired in controversy for years to come.

Who was Captain Elliot, and how did he find himself at the center of this debate? This book traces Elliot's career from his early life through his years in the Royal Navy before focusing on his role in the First Anglo-Chinese War and the founding of what became the Crown Colony of Hong Kong. Elliot has been demonized by China and for the most part poorly regarded by historians. This book shows him to have been a man ahead of his time whose views on slavery, armed conflict, the role of women and racial equality often placed him at variance with contemporary attitudes. Twenty years after the return of Hong Kong to China, his legacy is still with us.

Ghetto at the Center of the World: Chungking Mansions, Hong Kong

By Gordon Mathews

University of Chicago Press
Released: 2011-06-30
Paperback (254 pages)

Ghetto at the Center of the World: Chungking Mansions, Hong Kong
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There is nowhere else in the world quite like Chungking Mansions, a dilapidated seventeen-story commercial and residential structure in the heart of Hong Kong’s tourist district. A remarkably motley group of people call the building home; Pakistani phone stall operators, Chinese guesthouse workers, Nepalese heroin addicts, Indonesian sex workers, and traders and asylum seekers from all over Asia and Africa live and work there—even backpacking tourists rent rooms. In short, it is possibly the most globalized spot on the planet.

But as Ghetto at the Center of the World shows us, a trip to Chungking Mansions reveals a far less glamorous side of globalization. A world away from the gleaming headquarters of multinational corporations, Chungking Mansions is emblematic of the way globalization actually works for most of the world’s people. Gordon Mathews’s intimate portrayal of the building’s polyethnic residents lays bare their intricate connections to the international circulation of goods, money, and ideas. We come to understand the day-to-day realities of globalization through the stories of entrepreneurs from Africa carting cell phones in their luggage to sell back home and temporary workers from South Asia struggling to earn money to bring to their families. And we see that this so-called ghetto—which inspires fear in many of Hong Kong’s other residents, despite its low crime rate—is not a place of darkness and desperation but a beacon of hope.

Gordon Mathews’s compendium of riveting stories enthralls and instructs in equal measure, making Ghetto at the Center of the World not just a fascinating tour of a singular place but also a peek into the future of life on our shrinking planet.

The Peak: An Illustrated History of Hong Kong’s Top District (Royal Asiatic Society Hong Kong Studies Series)

By Richard J. Garrett

Blacksmith Books
Released: 2018-12-15
Hardcover (220 pages)

The Peak: An Illustrated History of Hong Kong’s Top District (Royal Asiatic Society Hong Kong Studies Series)
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The Peak is Hong Kong's top residential district, where property prices are as high as the altitude. How did it become an exclusive enclave in the bustling business center of 19th-century Asia?

The British wanted relief from summer heat and the Peak was the obvious place to escape it. When the Governor adopted Mountain Lodge as a summer getaway, development accelerated and the opening of the Peak Tram in 1888 made access easier. Gradually a community developed and a church, a club and a school were established.

This book describes how the now-popular tourist area developed over time and adapted as needs changed.

Escape from Hong Kong: Admiral Chan Chak’s Christmas Day Dash, 1941 (Royal Asiatic Society Hong Kong Studies Series Book 1)

By Tim Luard

Hong Kong University Press
Released: 2012-01-01
Kindle Edition (384 pages)

Escape from Hong Kong: Admiral Chan Chak’s Christmas Day Dash, 1941 (Royal Asiatic Society Hong Kong Studies Series Book 1)
 
Product Description:
On 25 December 1941, the day of Hong Kong’s surrender to the Japanese, Admiral Chan Chak – the Chinese government’s chief agent in Hong Kong – and more than 60 Chinese, British and Danish intelligence, naval and marine personnel made a dramatic escape from the invading army. They travelled on five small motor torpedo boats – all that remained of the Royal Navy in Hong Kong – across Mirs Bay, landing at a beach near Nan’ao. Then, guided by guerrillas and villagers, they walked for four days through enemy lines to Huizhou, before flying to Chongqingor travelling by land to Burma. The breakout laid the foundations of an escape trail jointly used by the British Army Aid Group and the East River Column for the rest of the war. Chan Chak, the celebrated ‘one-legged admiral’, became Mayor of Canton after the war and was knighted by the British for his services to the Allied cause. His comrade in the escape, David MacDougall, became head of the civil administration of Hong Kong in 1945.

This gripping account of the escape draws on a wealth of primary sources in both English and Chinese and sheds new light on the role played by the Chinese in the defence of Hong Kong, on the diplomacy behind the escape, and on the guerillas who carried the Admiral in a sedan chair as they led his party over the rivers and mountains of enemy-occupied China.

Escape from Hong Kong will appeal not just to military and other historians and those with a special interest in Hong Kong and China but also to anyone who appreciates a good old-fashioned adventure story.

Tim Luard is a former Beijing correspondent for the BBC World Service.

"Tim Luard tells this exciting and little known story with great skill. Some of us departed from Hong Kong much more comfortably! But we missed this extraordinary adventure." — Chris Patten, governor of Hong Kong, 1992–97

"Escape from Hong Kong is a crisp and comprehensive account of one of the epic untold tales of the Second World War - a unique Chinese-led British escape, under fire, from the Japanese invaders of Hong Kong." — Tony Banham, author of Not the Slightest Chance: The Defence of Hong Kong, 1941.

"The great Christmas Day breakout of 1941, when British and Chinese officers teamed up virtually for the fi rst time to escape from Hong Kong as the Japanese Army engulfed it, is one of the most dramatic episodes in Hong Kong’s history. Up till now the story has been diffused in a mass of individual diaries, letters and memoirs. Tim Luard has drawn this material together (Chinese as well as British) to produce a unifi ed narrative that is as full and balanced as it is enthralling." — Philip Snow, author of The Fall of Hong Kong: Britain, China, and the Japanese Occupation


 
 
 

 
 
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