Hong Kong Media and Asia's Cold War

Research output: Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook


British Hong Kong was a historical anomaly in the Cold War. It experienced no “hot war” or organized movement for independence, and yet it was a key battlefield of Asia’s cultural Cold War, thanks largely to its unique location right next to Mao’s China. The large influx of filmmakers, writers, and intellectuals from the mainland after 1948–1949 made the colony a hub of mass entertainment and popular publications in the region. Based on untapped archival materials, contemporary sources, and numerous interviews with filmmakers, magazine editors, and student activists, this book sheds lights on the contest between Communist China, Nationalist Taiwan, and the United States to mobilize the colony’s cinema and print media to win the hearts and minds of ethnic Chinese in Southeast Asia and around the world. At the front and center of this propaganda and psychological warfare was the émigré media industry. It was the golden age of Mandarin cinema and popular culture. In the wake of the 1967 riots through the 1970s, the emergence of a new, local-born generation challenged and reshaped the Cold War networks of émigré cultural production and led to a gradual winding down of Hong Kong’s cultural Cold War. This brings to light specifically the ways in which global conflicts were localized, intertwined with myriad local historical experiences and cultural formation. British Hong Kong was, in fact, a crossroads in the Cold War where the global, the regional, and the local intersected.
Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages252
ISBN (Electronic)9780190073800
ISBN (Print)9780190073763, 9780190073770
StatePublished - Mar 2023


  • Asia Foundation
  • pro–“Free China” media
  • pro-Communist media
  • cultural cold war
  • Chinese Student Weekly
  • Union Press
  • Asia Pictures
  • Cathay-MP&GI
  • Shaw Brothers


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