Consuming Hong Kong by Gordon Mathews, Tai-lok Lui

By Gordon Mathews, Tai-lok Lui

This booklet exhibits how the specified ehtnographic examine of intake in Hong Kong may end up in a deeper realizing of Hong Kong existence as an entire, in addition to of intake on the earth at large.

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By Gordon Mathews, Tai-lok Lui

This booklet exhibits how the specified ehtnographic examine of intake in Hong Kong may end up in a deeper realizing of Hong Kong existence as an entire, in addition to of intake on the earth at large.

Show description

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Extra resources for Consuming Hong Kong

Sample text

After outlining the history of fashion in Hong Kong, in its shift from 'Chinese' to 'Western', she looks at contemporary fashion theory, fashion as constructed by the capitalist world system and fashion as cultural resistance. Then she takes us on an intimate journey with three young women as they tour their favourite fashion stores and buy or resist buying what they see. In this chapter, Chan removes contemporary fashion theory from its abstractions, and looks in great detail at how these three young consumers actually comprehend their shopping for fashion.

However, as I shall try to demonstrate in this chapter, the breakdown of the cognitive and socio-economic barrier between the tourists' and the locals' consumption in Hong Kong is a recent phenomenon. The growth of the shopping mall culture in Hong Kong — unlike the experience in the United States, Canada and Great Britain, where the growth of shopping malls went hand in hand with growing affluence and the popularization of car ownership — does not spring from suburbanization and concomitant changes in styles of living (Crawford 1992) or the so-called 'highway comfort culture' (Kowinski 1985:46-52).

The distinctiveness of Ocean Terminal, both as a place of high consumption and as a 'window' to the outside world, was gradually eroded in the process through which Hong Kong emerged as an affluent society (Lee 1982). The 1970s witnessed the construction of shopping arcades targeted at local consumers (Lim 1999:17). With more shops and shopping centres opening in different parts of Hong Kong, ranging from huge shopping malls in central business locations to gigantic, integrated shopping centres in public housing estates, there emerged a hierarchy of shopping centres The Mailing of Hong Kong 39 defined in terms of the brands and status of merchandise on sale, the class background of clients, and the architecture.

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