Everyday Hybridity

Dr Paul O'Connor
Anthropology/Sociology/Cultural Studies/
Hong Kong/Ethnicity/
Skateboarding/Everyday Life

Lecturing in Anthropology at CUHK

Me

cuhk.academia.edu/PaulOConnor
@peejayohhsee
everydayhybridity@gmail.com

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My Publications
What is Everyday Hybridity?


Posts on Hybridity
Posts on Hong Kong
Posts on Islam
Posts on Skateboarding

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  1. Free access to past papers from Ethnic and Racial Studied Journal

     
     
  2. In memory of Stuart Hall
http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2014/feb/10/stuart-hall
http://www.opendemocracy.net/ourkingdom/jeremy-gilbert/tribute-to-stuart-hall
     
     
  3. "The key message is that through our fears of being left out and excluded, we have gleefully taken the responsibility of our own monitoring—always available, always able to be monitored. Perhaps the more subtle theme of the book is that we, too, whilst being watched, are also always watching."
    — 

    I just finished submitting my review of the Bauman and Lyon book for CSR. I thought I would include these final comments here as they are just so topical in the light of the Snowden affair and continued revelations of the U.S. and U.K. government, and NSA.

    One thing I mention in the review is that the book doesn’t talk a great deal about how the same technologies are being used to cast critique back at, and undermine, governments, businesses, and individuals that are doing the surveillance. This has been picked up nicely in Cyborgology with the humorous subversion of online surveillance. The ludic tweets they note, force the issue that although we remain complicit in using these technologies, we also know what is going on. Resistance through play, like Axel Foley and the Banana in the tailpipe!

     
     
  4. This is such a timely piece and I love what Melissa Gregg speaks about here.  Real enthusiasm with a healthy amount of caution, and some optimism as the papers gush with angst and ambiguity regarding prism.

    Garcetti wants LA to be “The best place in the world to hack”; the hackathon the birthplace of “the next tech CEO.” In his term, he wants every kid to have access to coding classes in high school, because education isn’t about preparing people for manufacturing jobs anymore. The winner of the hackathon was promised City Hall itself: “We’re going to open up the doors and the departments… to build a city of Angels for everyone.” I needed a hose down after all that. You can see how the idea of transparency is very easily transported from data to political process and democracy in general.

     
     
  5. The Kindle version of my book is now available on Amazon. There is also a preview of the first few pages. It looks great.
Check it out. Islam in Hong Kong: Muslims and Everyday Life in China’s World City

    The Kindle version of my book is now available on Amazon. There is also a preview of the first few pages. It looks great.

    Check it out. Islam in Hong Kong: Muslims and Everyday Life in China’s World City

     
     
  6. On October 18th at the University of Queensland Associate Professor of Sociology Anita Harris will be giving a seminar on young people in Australia and their multicultural belongings. It is a great topic and for all those in the Brisbane area, well worth the visit.

    Here is the abstract

    What does it mean to come of age in an era of anti-multiculturalism? How does such an environment shape the ways young people of diverse backgrounds come to feel ‘at home’ - in the nation, in the city, in their neighbourhoods, and in their Australian identity? Discussing findings from her study of youth in the multicultural suburbs of five Australian cities, Anita Harris explores how the politics of belonging is lived through the spatial practices of everyday civic life for those who have grown up during the multiculturalism backlash of the 1990s and 2000s.

     
     
  7. Some folks have contacted me asking how to get hold of the book. It should be in the shops in Hong Kong by now, it is also easy to pick up a copy at HKU book shop on campus. Perhaps the easiest way to get hold of it is from HKU Press website. However they changed the webpage link and all my old web links haven’t been working for the last couple of days.
So here it is again. Thanks to everyone who has been following the news of the book, and those who have already managed to get hold of a copy.
It won’t be out in the US and UK till November, then you can get it on Amazon.

    Some folks have contacted me asking how to get hold of the book. It should be in the shops in Hong Kong by now, it is also easy to pick up a copy at HKU book shop on campus. Perhaps the easiest way to get hold of it is from HKU Press website. However they changed the webpage link and all my old web links haven’t been working for the last couple of days.

    So here it is again. Thanks to everyone who has been following the news of the book, and those who have already managed to get hold of a copy.

    It won’t be out in the US and UK till November, then you can get it on Amazon.

     
     
  8. This is another fascinating issue to ponder. Again demonstrating how technology at once makes life easier and more complicated by the same click of the mouse.

    Typically we can pass on our music and book collections to families members when we die. But the lifetime of gathering such cultural artefacts in the digital age is much more ambiguous. Digital rights to book and mp3s are not necessarily transferable. It is a peculiar notion to ponder.

    But it also re-instates by belief in the value of a book. Holding a book that your father read is a somatic experience. You engage with the same artefacts that populated someone else’s life. Someone’s everyday life. Even if their are not traces, not coffee mug stains, not underlines passages, no old receipt used spontaneously as a bookmark, the book holds emotional weight. This cannot translate through a kindle, or an iPod.

    The article I link to takes a purely financial appraisal of the issue. But to me is also a sensuous one too. Something to certainly ponder.

     
     
  9. Wasabi Filet-O-Fish

    McDonalds provide endless entertainement and curiosity with the way they culturally adapt and alter their products. It is something I discuss in my book when referring to the consumption of halal food in Hong Kong. McDonalds in Singapore has halal certification, first introduced in 1992. But Hong Kong doesn’t, despite having a sizeable Muslim minority.

    The two photos above are simple curiosity pictures and they resonate with my theme of everyday hybridity. In one sense McDonalds is very much a cultural ‘cut and past’ hybridiser using the simple symbols, or superficial elements of other cultures to enhance their appeal. But at the same time because McDonalds hold so firmly to their corporate identity every new imagining of the brand is deeply banal, only a nuance of their typical presentation. The Thai Ronald McDonald is a great example of this everyday hybridity at its most trivial and banal. ‘Sawadi McKaap’ indeed.

    In Hong Kong at present you can buy a Wasabi Filet-O-Fish. A curious product, a fish sandwich with the ubiquitous spicy Japanese sushi paste. The mashing of this complexity is all the more curious as tensions between China and Japan have recently escalated regarding the status of the Daiyou Islands. Yet, and despite Hong Kong’s history, Japanese food tends to me amongst the most popular in the territory, as is its music, anime and fashion.

    At a tangent, I know that many Pakistani and Indonesian Muslims in Hong Kong love to eat Filet-O-Fish as they generally regard it as halal. WIth their penchant for spicy food I do wonder if they will also regard this wasabi offering has halal too? Is Wasabi halal?

     
     
  10. The book is published!
A little ahead of schedule, and now available from HKU Press. In the coming weeks it will appear on Amazon, in local bookstores, and slowly start making its way to libraries.
Thanks for all the interest from my Tumblr followers, friends, colleagues, research participants and everyone else who has contributed in one way or another.
Keep posted for further news about the release.
Here are some of the book’s endorsements….
"An unexpected gem. An innovative book which explores the everyday lived reality of Muslim minorities in Hong Kong. The contemporary focus is framed by a fascinating history of South Asian Muslims which reaches back into the early 19th century. This beautifully wrought study sheds a great deal of light on a range of issues impacting Muslim minorities: from the extent of hybridity—adapting basketball spaces to cricket—to the challenge of eating halal in a culinary culture where pork is ubiquitous! Young Muslims in Hong Kong face racism and their inability to access Chinese language schools has huge implications for employment and social mobility. However, Islam is respected and they are not seen through a security lens. In all, a hopeful study." — Philip Lewis, author of Islamic Britain and Young, British and Muslim "There has long been a need for a book-length account of Muslims in Hong Kong; this readable and informative book admirably fills the void. Anyone interested in how Muslims make their lives and practice their faith in the Chinese city of Hong Kong should definitely read it." — Gordon Mathews, author of Ghetto at the Center of the World: Chungking Mansions, Hong Kong "In this insightful and fascinating book, O’Connor walks us through the bustling streets of Hong Kong, where space, civility, hope and freedom are created every day by the territory’s diverse Muslims. It provides a rare glimpse into an imperfect, but perhaps ‘good enough’ cosmopolitanism, lived in the schools, homes, shops and lives of ordinary people. Amidst the worry and panic about young Muslims in diaspora as either problems or victims, this is a refreshing and much-needed account of the valuable ways a global city deals with difference. An essential text for scholars and students of youth, diversity and contemporary multiculturalism." — Anita Harris, author of Young People and Everyday Multiculturalism

    The book is published!

    A little ahead of schedule, and now available from HKU Press. In the coming weeks it will appear on Amazon, in local bookstores, and slowly start making its way to libraries.

    Thanks for all the interest from my Tumblr followers, friends, colleagues, research participants and everyone else who has contributed in one way or another.

    Keep posted for further news about the release.

    Here are some of the book’s endorsements….

    "An unexpected gem. An innovative book which explores the everyday lived reality of Muslim minorities in Hong Kong. The contemporary focus is framed by a fascinating history of South Asian Muslims which reaches back into the early 19th century. This beautifully wrought study sheds a great deal of light on a range of issues impacting Muslim minorities: from the extent of hybridity—adapting basketball spaces to cricket—to the challenge of eating halal in a culinary culture where pork is ubiquitous! Young Muslims in Hong Kong face racism and their inability to access Chinese language schools has huge implications for employment and social mobility. However, Islam is respected and they are not seen through a security lens. In all, a hopeful study." — Philip Lewis, author of Islamic Britain and Young, British and Muslim 

    "There has long been a need for a book-length account of Muslims in Hong Kong; this readable and informative book admirably fills the void. Anyone interested in how Muslims make their lives and practice their faith in the Chinese city of Hong Kong should definitely read it." — Gordon Mathews, author of Ghetto at the Center of the World: Chungking Mansions, Hong Kong 

    "In this insightful and fascinating book, O’Connor walks us through the bustling streets of Hong Kong, where space, civility, hope and freedom are created every day by the territory’s diverse Muslims. It provides a rare glimpse into an imperfect, but perhaps ‘good enough’ cosmopolitanism, lived in the schools, homes, shops and lives of ordinary people. Amidst the worry and panic about young Muslims in diaspora as either problems or victims, this is a refreshing and much-needed account of the valuable ways a global city deals with difference. An essential text for scholars and students of youth, diversity and contemporary multiculturalism." — Anita Harris, author of Young People and Everyday Multiculturalism