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Lecture 3

Lecture 3 - Chinese Community in Early Colonial Hong Kong.docx

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Department
History
Course
HIS385H1
Professor
Chin Lim
Semester
Winter

Description
HIS385 Lecture 3 JAN24/2014 Cont. of last week’s lecture - no city of Hong Kong before Opium War - Lord Palmerston (1 governor): “barren rock with hardly a house on it” (not entirely true – there were inhabitants, just very few) - military occupation, 1841  Colony in 1843 - HK is not close to the political center as well as the economic center of China  reason for choosing Hong Kong - HK = British headquarters for trade, diplomacy, military - proximity to Shanghai taken into account - Hong Kong Charter, 1843 – Queen Victoria “Letters Patent”: designated Crown Colony title, Governor post Governor charged w/ responsibility of administration – letter outlines responsibilities - “Royal Instructions”: administrative system longer document w/ more details for daily administration (these two documents are basis for first assignment) Administration of Hong Kong - Governor (Sir Henry Pottinger was 1 ) st Crown’s representative, executive authority, administrator, diplomat (until 1860) – relation to China, trade superintendent (especially trade between British and China) Executive Council - members appointed by British crown, served administrative functions - Chinese member finally admitted in 1926 - Many members also serve as the Legislative Council - Cadets (HK Cadetship 1861+) Legislative Council - governor made appointment decisions (Members are crown appointed) - usually officials, prominent merchants - served legislative functions – ie. passing laws - Chinese member in 1880 Civil Service - British expatriates - Portuguese and Indians (who had been in region for much longer) - Hong Kong Chinese Familiar with Chinese culture and Chinese community - Cadets (HK Cadetship from 1861 onwards) Recruit fresh graduates  to serve as civil servants in colonies like HK Given proper training – language, governance Slight improvement between gov’t and Chinese people Slightly more professional in terms of training 2 Limitations on HK’s Autonomy - appointment of Governor – by London • London has the power to strip governor of power • Represents the interest of the British not HK - no independent legislation – ie. English laws applied there, and any Chinese customs that violated English law were prohibited • HK laws based on existing British laws - balanced budget required – British not interested in investing huge sums • not permitted to have deficit every year • not allowed to waste resources in things not needed by HK • prevent the government from investing in public services that will essentially benefit HK o careful in using their resources well, so they rarely invest in social programs or infrastructure o anything they do invest in leads to the improvement of trade • the Britain can control the cost of running HK • After WW, shift in mindset  invested in public education, health, etc. that benefits the people of HK - small colonial government with few services - ie. Little investment in public health, housing, education, etc (til WWI) • Intended because huge gov’t = expensive • Control the cost of gov’t therefore efficient and small 3 Land Developments - land surveys - town of Victoria (administrative center of HK), roads (Queen’s Road) - reclamations on waterfront ASSIGNMENT - cite readings more than lectures - historical background – context of the creation of the documents & why do they exist? - balance – satisfying all three requirements - do not summarize & identify important points - context will serve as introduction - conclusion is third requirement – wrap-up - unless you notice similarities… the two documents are quite different - legal contracts Chinese Community in Early Hong Kong [!] refer to notebook for my notes [!] - Chinese settlement in HK pre-1841 single-surname village multi-surname village population 5,000 1842: HK Chinese became British subjects 4 - concept of dual nationality hadn’t really existed before - original inhabitants, merchants, smugglers (serve as middle man of British and the local gov’t), labourers (Chinese peasants as construction workers) - Chinese under Chinese laws/customs – that had fled for refuge or economic opportunities - as long as these laws did not violate HK laws, they would be allowed to continue – opportunity to manage a lot of affairs independently w/o government interference - “indirect rule” through villages + community organization/leaders  stand for the interests of Chinese community - Registrar-General (1845) - Chinese majo
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