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Intellectual Narratives

Theory, History and Self-Characterization of Social Margins in Public Writings

Alex Ching-Shing Chan

This book aims to study the intellectual lives of three Hong Kong intellectuals by narrating their lives as self-reflections on theories related to social margins. Drawing on insights from Paul Ricoeur, Hannah Arendt and Zygmunt Bauman, the author analyses their narratives through in-depth interviews. Their stories point to an interpretative understanding of the works they had cursorily read when creating their historical narrations of Hong Kong from the 1970s to 2003. These stories of individual intellectuals, together with their interpretations of what they have individually read about various western theories, challenge theoretical prescriptions of historical contingent events in their narration. Such narration unfolds self-characterizations of intellectuals the author interviewed, and represents a neglected social marginal which demands that immediate attention in the public through their intellectual writings.

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Acknowledgements ix

Extract

ix Acknowledgements Finishing this book was not easy. Several life events delayed its comple- tion. These events included my family obligation to fold my father’s family business, my tantalizing engagement in fi eldwork with a local Hong Kong industry and the heavy workload of part-time teaching. However, I would fi rst and foremost like to thank sincerely Agnes S. M. Ku, who was my supervisor for my thesis and who continuously encouraged me to publish my academic work. Wai-yip Ho, my friend and once my dearest classmate at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, shared his knowledge of academic publishing with me. I would also like to thank Anthony Woodiwiss, whose lectures I attended at the Chinese University of Hong Kong, for reading through the manuscript of this book and affi rming the contribution that my work could make to the present literature; his support for my work made me determined to fi nish it as quickly as possible. Last but not least, I would like to thank Sharon Sanderson and Peter Madill for their careful and professional editing.

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