Two historians will share their research and insights into the complexities of gender in diverse contexts of pre-war and post-war Hong Kong.
Examining two disputes over the status of mui tsai (female bondservants), John Carroll will discuss how these controversies were enmeshed in Hong Kong’s evolving geopolitical situation. The first debate, in the late 1870s and early 1880s, arose from different attitudes toward Hong Kong’s geographic, political, and cultural position at the edge of the British and Chinese empires. During the second controversy, in the 1920s and 1930s, what had been mainly a local matter became a long and intense imperial debate in interwar Britain. Yet this debate was also very much a Chinese one, not only about slavery, labour, and gender, but also about being Chinese in a modern world.
Carol Tsang will explore the changing everyday space that women and men inhabit in Hong Kong since 1945. She will further explore the physical and imagined spaces in family, education, and employment. Challenging the gender binary, her research highlights how historical acumen will help promote a more diverse and inclusive society.
This session of Tai Kwun Conversations will accompany the current heritage thematic exhibition Gender & Space. Members of the curatorial team will join the discussions moderated by Christopher Munn.
The event will be conducted in English, with simultaneous interpretation from English to Cantonese available.
Dr. Christopher Munn
Prof. John M. Carroll
Principal Lecturer, Department of History, The University of Hong Kong
Dr. Carol Tsang
Lecturer, Department of History, The University of Hong Kong
7:00pm – 8:00pm
8:00pm – 8:30pm
Photo credit: Courtesy of the Hong Kong Museum of History