Hong Kong on the Brink, 1987–2019

This talk will focus on patterns of protest in Hong Kong during the last three decades or so and the tightening of political controls in the city over the course of the last several years.  The presenter, who has been visiting Hong Kong regularly since 1987, will draw on his work as a specialist in the history of social movements and also his observations during his many trips to Hong Kong, including one that took place while the drama of the 2014 Umbrella Movement was underway.  In addition to highlighting distinctive features of Hong Kong that set it apart from all other places, the talk will explore some parallels that can be drawn between the city during various parts of its history and other urban centers, including both Shanghai and, more unexpectedly, Berlin. Jeff Wasserstrom is Chancellor's Professor of History at the University of California, Irvine.

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