Hong Kong Mosaic
At some point in life, most people will ask the question, “Who am I?” Ethnicity may play a part, the place they grew up in, the language(s) they speak. Given Hong Kong’s colonial history, relationship with the mainland and mixed population, it is intriguing to see how its inhabitants define themselves.
In this issue, we explore how the identities of different sectors of our community have evolved with the changes in society. Often, an individual experiences tensions between different layers of their multiple identities.
There are concerns that while students are being cultivated to be more “Chinese”, the government is pumping money into promoting a one-sided view of what that means in mainstream national education programmes.
Today, new arrivals from the Mainland may be coming to settle in Hong Kong for purposes different from their predecessors. They no longer come for the better welfare or living conditions. They no longer seek to integrate into Hong Kong society as China’s rapid development overshadows the appeal of being a Hongkonger.
On the other hand, those who do want to integrate are having a hard time. Members of ethnic minorities may be born and raised in Hong Kong, but they are not completely accepted as locals. Still, some have been able to find their place here. Briton Andrew Brown is Hong Kong’s first expatriate village head, having been elected by both expatriates and locals in three consecutive elections.
Other, traditional identities of Hong Kong are disappearing. Hong Kong’s fishing industry and communities once flourished, but today its remaining fishermen struggle to make a living.
These are the people that make up the communities of Hong Kong. Whatever their identities are, they each have a story to tell. Take your time to read through these stories – perhaps it may help you to discover your own.