"Annual postgraduate conference 2014"
Date: 4th April, 2014
Location: University of Hong Kong
"The University of Hong Kong
Department of Sociology
Book Talk Series 2014"
那似曾相識的七十年代 (The Story of Hong Kong in the 1970s Re-told)
AUTHOR: Prof. Tai-Lok LUI
DISCUSSANT: Dr. Chun Hung NG
DATE: 18 March, 2014 Tuesdays, 1:00-2:20pm
Rm929, 9/F, The Jockey Club Tower, HKU
Marketing Death: Culture and the Making of a Life Insurance Market in China
AUTHOR: Dr. Cheris Shun-Ching CHAN
DISCUSSANT: Dr. David Alexander PALMER
DATE: 1 April, 2014 Tuesdays, 1:00-2:20pm
Rm929, 9/F, The Jockey Club Tower, HKU
SYNOPSIS: The book explores both how and why the life insurance industry has managed to emerge in China, a country with an entrenched cultural stigma against the very topic of death. Chan tells a story not just of the emergence of the Chinese life insurance industry, but of the dynamic relationships between culture and markets, local norms and foreign influences in one of the world’s fastest-growing economies.
Chinese Male Homosexualities: Memba, Tongzhi and Golden Boy
AUTHOR: Dr. Travis Shiu Ki KONG
DISCUSSANT: Dr. Denise Tse-Shang TANG
DATE: 15 April, 2014 Tuesdays, 1:00-2:20pm
Rm929, 9/F, The Jockey Club Tower, HKU
SYNOPSIS: This book presents a groundbreaking exploration of masculinities and homosexualities amongst Chinese gay men, with rich data from an extensive ethnographic study of contemporary Chinese gay men in a wide range of different locations. It provides a sociological account of masculinity, desire, sexuality, identity and citizenship in contemporary Chinese societies, and within the constellation of global culture.
Rebuilding the Ancestral Village: Singaporeans in China
AUTHOR: Dr. Khun Eng KUAH-PEARCE
DISCUSSANT: Dr. Colin SMITH
DATE: 29 April, 2014 Tuesdays, 1:00-2:20pm
Rm929, 9/F, The Jockey Club Tower, HKU
SYNOPSIS: This work illustrates the relationship between one group of Singaporean Chinese and their ancestral village in Fujian, China. It explores the reasons why the Singaporean Chinese continue to maintain ties with their ancestral village and how they reproduce Chinese culture through ancestor worship and religion in the ancestral village. This ethnographic study examines two geographically distinct groups of Chinese coming together to re-establish their lineage and identity through cultural and economic activities.
How to Raise a Global Child:
Reflexivity, Change and Divergence of Middle-Class Parenthood in Taiwan
April 3, 2014 4:30-6:00pm
Rm813, 8/F, The Jockey Club Tower, HKU
The fertility rate in Taiwan has dropped to one of the lowest in the world. To raise their ever precious and fragile children, Taiwanese middle class view parenting as a practice of reflexive deliberation and monitoring in facing contextual discontinuity and globalized changes. They use a narrative of rupture to describe their difference from the previous generation, and they seek advice from Western experts to mark their cosmopolitan identity in distinction from lower-class parents with limited global exposure. Despite their shared class privilege, middle-class parents have developed a range of educational strategies as divergent responses to globalization. Parents at one end of the spectrum adopt the strategy of cultivating global competitiveness: they feel responsible for engineering children’s talents and preparing them for the increasingly competitive global labor market. Parents leaning toward the other end employ the strategy of orchestrating natural growth: they manage to shelter a “happy childhood” from institutional pressure by emigrating to the countryside and seeking a Western model of holistic education.
Pei-Chia Lan is Professor of Sociology at National Taiwan University. She received a Ph.D. from Northwestern University and was a postdoctoral fellow at University of California, Berkeley, a Fulbright scholar at New York University, and a Radcliffe-Yenching fellow at Harvard University. Her book Global Cinderellas: Migrant Domestics and Newly Rich Employers in Taiwan (Duke 2006) won a Distinguished Book Award from the Sex and Gender Section of the American Sociological Association and ICAS Book Prize: Best Study in Social Science from the International Convention of Asian Scholars. She is working on a book manuscript about parenting, globalization and class inequality.
Diminishing Gender Roles? Trends in paid and unpaid work time, 1960s - 2010s
March 27, 2014 (Thursday)
Rm1103, 11/F, The Jockey Club Tower, HKU
This paper presents trends in paid and unpaid work time over the last 40 years in 12 Western countries. The trends reveal a slow and incomplete convergence of women’s and men’s work time. A simplistic extrapolation would indicate a 70–80 year process of gender convergence, with the year 2010 representing an approximate mid-point. However, in conformity with the expectations of gender theory, time use data show that gender segregation in domestic work is quite persistent over time. Women still do the bulk of routine housework and caring for family members while men have increased their contributions disproportionately to non-routine domestic work. The findings suggest that gender ideologies play an important role in the domestic division of labour. The effects of institutional barriers are also apparent, with differential changes in women’s proportional contribution to routine housework and caring activities related to different national policy clusters.
Man Yee Kan is a University Lecturer at the Department of Sociology and Linacre College, University of Oxford. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences and an MPhil in Sociology at the University of Hong Kong, and an MSc and a DPhil in Sociology at University of Oxford. She previously worked for an Economic and Social Research Council UK funded project on the domestic division of labour and the gender wage gap (2004-2008). She won a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship (2008-2011) and a Research Councils UK Academic Fellowship (2008-2013). Her research interests include gender inequalities in the family and the labour market, marriage, the gender division of labour, time use research, welfare and public policy regimes in Western and East Asian societies.
Challenging (and maybe transforming) Capitalism through Real Utopias
March 25, 2014 (Tuesday)
Rm702, 7/F, The Jockey Club Tower, HKU
While capitalism has become more destructive both to the lives of people and the health of the environment, it seems to most people an unalterable force of nature. Social democratic hopes of taming capitalism by neutralizing its harmful effects through decisive state regulations have been undermined by the globalization and financialization of capital. Revolutionary ambitions of smashing capitalism through a ruptural seizure of state power, a coercive dissolution of capitalist institutions and their replacement by an emancipatory alternative, lack credibility. Are these the only logics of transformation? There may be a different route that points beyond capitalism: transcending capitalism by building emancipatory alternatives to capitalism in the spaces and cracks within capitalist economies and struggling to defend and expand those spaces.
Professor Erik Olin Wright was educated at Harvard, Balliol College, Oxford, and the University of California-Berkeley, where he received his PhD in Sociology. He has taught sociology at the University of Wisconsin since 1976 where he is currently Vilas Distinguished Professor of Sociology. He was president of the American Sociological Association in 2011-12. His academic work has been centrally concerned with reconstructing the Marxist tradition of social theory and research in ways that attempt to make it more relevant to contemporary concerns and more cogent as a scientific framework of analysis. Since 1992 he has directed The Real Utopias Project which explores a wide range of proposals for new institutional designs that embody emancipatory ideals and yet are attentive to issues of pragmatic feasibility. Professor Wright has published more than a dozen books, and some of which include: The Politics of Punishment (Harper Collins, 1973); Class, Crisis and the State (London: New Left Books, 1978); Class Structure and Income Determination (Academic Press, 1979); The Debate on Classes (London: Verso, 1990); Interrogating Inequality (London: Verso, 1994); Class Counts: Comparative Studies in Class Analysis (Cambridge University Press, 1997); Deepening Democracy (with Archon Fung. London: Verso: 2003); Approaches to Class Analysis (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2005); and Envisioning Real Utopias (Verso, 2010). He is also the series editor for the Real Utopias Project series, published by Verso Books. Website: www.ssc.wisc.edu/~wright
What’s so special about sex? The ‘Sexual Fix’ revisited
March 13, 2014 (Thursday)
Rm813, 8/F, The Jockey Club Tower, HKU
In this talk I seek to trouble aspects of the western narrative of progress towards greater sexual freedom, in particular in Anglo-Saxon culture where sex has been both tabooed and celebrated. On the one hand it has historically been associated with sin or seen as an dangerous force which, if not contained, threatens to undermine civilisation; on the other hand it has been valorised as essential to individual fulfilment or a as a route to personal and social liberation. We still live with these contradictions, calling into question the conventional story of sexual modernity as a process of liberalisation. Revisiting Stephen Heath’s analysis of ‘the sexual fix’ (Heath 1982), I will argue that it is even more pertinent today than it was three decades ago and might help us make sense of some of the contradictions around sexuality in Anglo-Saxon culture. Sexual imagery is now a ubiquitous feature of this culture, individuals are frequently exhorted to improve their sexual lives and performance or pitied if they lack a sexual partner, yet sex remains hedged around with cautions, is treated as a source of titillation and a site of political controversy. Whether viewed positively or negatively, sex tends to be placed outside the routine and mundane, as something special and apart from other social interaction. Only rarely is it treated as an ordinary, unremarkable aspect of social life. Much academic debate around sexuality, too, has been shaped by the binary of sex as dangerous or pleasurable, leading some to focus on negative aspects of sexuality (e.g. sexual violence) and others to celebrate the pleasures of sexual transgression – which leads to a focus on problematic or exotic sexual practices respectively at the expense of routine, everyday sex. In this talk I will explore some contemporary manifestations of the ‘special’ status of sex and consider what it might mean to think of sex as ordinary and mundane. I will argue that it is essential to divest sexuality of its special status and analyse it as we would any other aspect of social life in order to maintain a critical stance on contemporary western sexual mores, lifestyles and practices.
Stevi Jackson is Professor of Women’s Studies and Director of the Centre for Women’s Studies at the University of York, UK. Her books include Heterosexuality in Question (Sage 1999), Theorizing Sexuality, with Sue Scott (Open University Press, 2010) and, with Momin Rahman, of Gender and Sexuality: Sociological Approaches (Polity 2010). She has co-edited a number of collections including, with Sue Scott, Gender: A Sociological Reader (Routledge 2002) and with Liu Jieyu and Woo Juhyun, East Asian Sexualities: Intimacy, Modernity and New Sexual Cultures (Zed 2008). In collaboration with Petula Sik Ying Ho (University of Hong Kong), she is researching women’s experiences of social change in Britain and Hong Kong and writing a book provisionally entitled Women Doing Intimacy: Gender, Family and Modernity in Hong Kong and Britain, to be published by Palgrave Macmillan.
Title Cyber-Fortress Europe's New Frontier: Borders, technology, mobile bodies and narratives of exclusion in the Old Continent
Date:November 6, 2013
Venue: Rm1103 11/F, The Jockey Club Tower, Centennial Campus, HKU
This paper presents preliminary findings from a research project that looks at mobility and border control in Western Balkans, in the context of EU integration. Through an analysis of interviews with representatives of various government agencies and non-governmental organisations that work on issues of migration and mobility in Serbia, as well as media and policy analysis, the paper casts a closer look at the process that might position Republic of Serbia as a key ally of the EU and a future border custodian of the EU’s Southeast frontier. The paper also reflects on a likely impact of these processes on the status of vulnerable categories of citizens and non-citizens, such as asylum seekers and victims of crime, as well as on crime countermeasures, human rights and mobility in the region more broadly.
Dr. Sanja Milivojevic
Cyber-Fortress Europe's New Frontier: Borders, technology, mobile bodies and narratives of exclusion in the Old Continent
Dr Sanja Milivojevic is a Lecturer in Criminology at University of New South Wales. She holds LL.B and LL.M from Belgrade University’s Law School, and PhD from Monash University. Sanja's research interests are trafficking in people; migration and borders; new technologies, sexting
and surveillance; and international criminal justice and human rights. She is a NSW representative in the Committee of Management of the Australian and New Zealand Society of Criminology, and an editorial board member of a journal Temida (Serbia). Sanja publishes in Serbian and English, and her latest research project is on borders, technology and mobility in Southeast Europe. She tweets about it @smilivojevic.
All are welcome.
Doing Imaginative Criminology
Date:Wednesday October 30, 2013
The University of Hong Kong, Centennial Campus, Jockey Club Tower, Rm. 813
In this paper Pat Carlen argues the case for an imaginative criminology employing
a variety of methods to deconstruct present crime issues before reconstructing them
differently. She illustrates the approach by describing how she developed the concepts
of ‘imaginary penalities’ and ‘reparative justice’.
Pat Carlen, BA, PhD is Honorary Professor of Criminology at the University of Leicester
in the UK. She is also Editor-in-Chief of the British Journal of Criminology, co-founder
of the UK campaigning group ‘Women in Prison’ and has published 19 books and
many articles on criminal and social justice. She has conducted research in England,
Scotland, Australia, New Zealand, Israel, USA and Peru, and given invited lectures in
all those countries as well as in The Netherlands, Denmark, Portugal, Spain, Canada,
Austria, Hungary, Hong Kong, Sweden, Argentina and South Africa. Her work has
been translated into Japanese, Norwegian, Dutch, Portuguese and Spanish.
In 1997 she was awarded the American Society of Criminology’s Sellin-Glueck Prize
for Outstanding International Contributions to Criminology, in 2010 the British
Society of Criminology’s Award for Outstanding Achievement and in 2011 an
Honorary Doctorate in Laws from Lincoln University, UK. A short biographical chapter
is to be found in Fifty Key Thinkers in Criminology (eds. K. Hayward, S. Maruna and
J. Mooney. Routledge 2010: 232-237) A collection of her selected works entitled
A Criminological Imagination: Essays on Punishment, Justice, Discourse was
published in Ashgate’s Pioneers in Contemporary Criminology in 2010.
Beyond Silk Road: how online illicit marketplaces are challenging law enforcement and transforming the global trade in illicit drugs
Date: October 28, 2013
Venue: Rm813, 8/F, The Jockey Club Tower, Centennial Campus, HKU
The recent closure of the illicit drugs trading website Silk Road garnered world-wide media attention and focused the public spotlight on new forms of drug distribution facilitated by the internet. Despite the closure of Silk Road, online drug distribution appears to be growing in popularity and is likely to proliferate further in years to come. This is due to significant advantages available to both drug producers and consumers who conduct transactions online. This seminar explores the characteristics of online illicit websites such as the now defunct Silk Road and other similar sites still in operation. Online forms of drug distribution will be contrasted with conventional illicit trafficking and retail networks. These changes will then be considered in terms of the new challenges that they pose for law enforcement and prohibition agencies.
Dr James Martin is a criminologist and senior lecturer at the Centre for Policing, Intelligence and Counter-Terrorism at Macquarie University. His research interests include online drug distribution, the War on Drugs, cybercrime and cyber-vigilantism, as well as policing and new technologies.
The 11th Annual Conference of the Hong Kong Sociological Association
The Department of Sociology has hosted the 11th Annual Conference of the Hong Kong Sociological Association (HKSA). [Photo]