This study demonstrates that recognizing the differences of the women activists promoting disparate agendas leads to a fuller appreciation of the connections and commonalities in the relations among those involved. Transnational Feminism and Women's Movements in Post-1997 Hong Kong: Solidarity Beyond the State is the first comprehensive account of feminism and women's movements in Hong Kong. The unique geographical, historical and cultural situation of the city provides the backdrop for Adelyn Lim to bring diverse groups of activists organizing socially disadvantaged and disaffected women, many of whom originating from Mainland China as well as South and Southeast Asia, to the foreground. Feminism, Lim argues, is t premised on a collective identity; it should rather be understood as a collective frame of action. The work begins with a critical history of women's mobilization during the British colonial period and the lead up to governance under the People's Republic of China. Subsequent chapters discuss the organizational forms, rhetoric, and strategies of women's groups in addressing the feminization of poverty, engagement with state institutions, violence against women, prostitution, and domestic work. Conflicts between feminist ideals and the realities and demands of the socio-political environment are thrown into sharp relief. The empirical analysis makes a case for Hong Kong to be considered as a prime site to challenge and renew the theorizing of transnational feminism.
Adelyn Lim is a postdoctoral fellow with the Department of Sociology at the National University of Singapore. She graduated with a PhD in Anthropology from the Australian National University.