Is there a shred of use for this institution? : Cultural studies and its making in Hong Kong

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Department of Cultural Studies, Lingnan University; Kwan Fong Cultural Research and Development Programme, Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences, Lingnan University

Event Title

KFCRD Cultural Studies Seminar & Cultural Magazine, Cultural Magazine, 2005-06

Document Type

Public Seminar




5:30 p.m. -- 7:00 p.m.


GE101, General Education Building, Lingnan University


As a context-specific project, Cultural Studies has taken shape in Hong Kong through a changing set of institutional frames conditioned by the ex-colony’s proximity to the rapid changes occurring on the Chinese mainland, as well as globalizing networks with various developments in the Asia-Pacific region, where cultural education and politics are crossing new borders. Doing Cultural Studies today we must work with many partners, to explore useful interfaces between the teaching/research programme and the cultural industry/policy practitioners, media professionals, schools, and NGO groups etc.

I shall draw on three set of issues informing my career as a Cultural Studies scholar: (1) the shaping of academic work in which the institutionalization of critique is subject to various social, economic and political changes since the late colonial period; (2) the disciplinary making process in which the shifting needs and challenges of pedagogy interact with evolving institutional parameters and critical functions of Cultural Studies; and (3) the complex relationship between the daily practice of public pedagogy, the constant re-shaping of identity imaginary, and the governing technologies of citizenship in the course of Hong Kong’s transition from colony to post-colony.

Approaching the condition of ‘usefulness’ in the local fields of cultural education and development, I shall end with questions reflecting on the social agency, tactics and effectivity of disciplinarity across a range of cultural action struggles, to shed some light on the possibility of what Tony Bennett has called a pragmatic ‘prosaic politics’ for Cultural Studies here and now.



Additional Information


Stephen Chan, Ching-kiu is professor in Cultural Studies and programme director of the Master of Cultural Studies at Lingnan University. Published on contemporary Hong Kong/Chinese culture, his most recent work is the co-edited book, with Meaghan Morris and Li Siu-leung, entitled Hong Kong Connections: Transnational Imagination in Action Cinema (HKUP & DukeUP 2005). His current scholarly interests are the transnational re-shaping of Hong Kong cinema, urban cultural policy and planning, critical pedagogy through popular culture, and the re-orientation of Cultural Studies.

Recommended Citation

Chan, C. K. S. (2005, October 10). Is there a shred of use for this institution?: Cultural studies and its making in Hong Kong [Video podcast]. Retrieved from http://commons.ln.edu.hk/videos/228