The Last Half Century of Chinese Overseas

The Last Half Century of Chinese Overseas

The Last Half Century of Chinese Overseas

The Last Half Century of Chinese Overseas


The papers collected in this anthology look at Chinese overseas, residing in five continents in the half century after the Second World War, from many new perspectives. Some papers raise questions about the Chinese diaspora in broad conceptual terms, and inquire into the meaning of being Chinese outside China.


This book is an anthology of select papers presented at 'The Last Half Century of Chinese Overseas: Comparative Perspectives' Conference held from 19 to 21 December 1994.

The conference, hosted by the University of Hong Kong, was the spiritual successor of an earlier conference, the 'Luodi Shenggen: The Legal, Political and Economic Status of Chinese in the Diaspora' Conference held in 1992 in San Francisco. The Hong Kong conference, however, was more focused in terms of time, being the first international meeting of its kind to concentrate on the post-war period which had witnessed fundamental changes among Chinese outside China.

The gathering attracted considerable scholarly attention around the world. The 171 overseas participants were well matched by 91 from Hong Kong. Not surprisingly, a large contingent hailed from mainland China, and they were joined by 24 delegates from Japan, 18 from Australia, 17 from the United States and 11 from Taiwan. Delegates from South Africa, Denmark, Germany and Brazil, though small in number, further indicated that the study of the Chinese diaspora was indeed spreading to new corners of the world.

A total of 142 papers, including a number written in Chinese, were presented in 54 sessions over the three days. The majority were related to one of the five themes chosen for the conference: changing economic activities of Chinese overseas, national, international and transnational; migration patterns; political participation in host countries; popular culture and ethnicity; family structure and gender issues.

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