Hong Kong in the Cold War


Edited by Priscilla Roberts and John M. Carroll

ISBN : 978-988-8208-00-5


August 2016

268 pages, 6″ x 9″, 24 b&w illus; 4 figures and 3 tables

  • HK$350.00

The Cold War was a distinct and crucial period in Hong Kong’s evolution and in its relations with China and the rest of the world. Hong Kong was a window through which the West could monitor what was happening in China and an outlet that China could use to keep in touch with the outside world. Exploring the many complexities of Cold War politics from a global and interdisciplinary perspective, Hong Kong in the Cold War shows how Hong Kong attained and honed a pragmatic tradition that bridged the abyss between such opposite ideas as capitalism and communism, thus maintaining a compromise between China and the rest of the world.

The chapters are written by nine leading international scholars and address issues of diplomacy and politics, finance and economics, intelligence and propaganda, refugees and humanitarianism, tourism and popular culture, and their lasting impact on Hong Kong. Far from simply describing a historical period, these essays show that Hong Kong’s unique Cold War experience may provide a viable blueprint for modern-day China to develop a similar model of good governance and may in fact hold the key to the successful implementation of the One Country Two Systems idea.

Priscilla Roberts is associate professor of history at the University of Hong Kong. She has published numerous books and articles on Anglo-American relations, Western-Asian relations, the Cold War, and international history. John M. Carroll is professor of history at the University of Hong Kong and is the author of A Concise History of Hong Kong.

“This is a timely collection of essays on the role of Hong Kong in a global context and its multifaceted relationship with mainland China. It is emerging at a particularly appropriate moment when the local community has been provoked to reflect on its common fate under the notion of ‘one country, two systems.’” —Ray Yep, City University of Hong Kong

“Hong Kong, the ‘Berlin of the East,’ was transformed by the Cold War, an existential conflict between capitalism and communism. Consequently, this fine volume is a must-read for political, cultural, and economic historians of Hong Kong. International historians should also add this collection of essays and cutting-edge empirical studies to their reading lists: it will enrich their understandings of the Global Cold War.” —David Clayton, University of York