Theology After the Hong Kong Umbrella Movement: Notes from Hong Kong and Vancouver

One of the hallmarks of the 2014 prodemocracy occupy protests in Hong Kong known as the Umbrella Movement was the presence of Christians doing theology on the streets, sometimes fused with Cantonese hero traditions. But in the aftermath of the movement, how has the relationship between theology and politics developed, especially in a time of greater authoritarian power exerted by the People’s Republic of China on its “Special Administrative Region”? What can be learned about the efficacy of God-talk in protest when the movement is considered to be over? How has such God-talk traveled transnationally to Vancouver?

Justin K.H. Tse is a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Asian American Studies Program at Northwestern University. He is lead editor of Theological Reflections on the Hong Kong Umbrella Movement (Palgrave, 2016), and his writing can also be found in Population, Space, and PlaceGlobal NetworksProgress in Human GeographyReview of Religion in Chinese SocietySocial and Cultural GeographyChinese America: History and PerspectiveChing Feng, and the Bulletin for the Study of Religion. He is working on a book manuscript titled “Religious Politics in Pacific Space: Grounding Cantonese Protestant Theologies in Secular Civil Societies,” and a second project is under way comparing the theological afterlives of occupy protests in Hong Kong, Kyiv, and Seattle.

This event is organized by the Hong Kong Studies Initiative and co-sponsored by the Centre for Chinese Research and the Department of Geography.

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