For many people in Hong Kong, that alienated Chinese territory, the double commemoration of National Day and Mid Autumn Festival in 2017 was a sombre one. On the 1st of October, we acknowledged that disquiet by launching a new series in China Heritage titled ‘Hong Kong, The Best China’ 香港, 最好的中國. The title of the series was suggested by a remark made by John Minford in an interview given to the Hong Kong Economic Journal 信報 in April 2016: when John’s mother entertained guests, she would make a point of bringing out ‘the best China’. An effort was necessary, John went on to observe, to preserve ‘the best China’, much of which can be found in Hong Kong.
Our Hong Kong-related Heritage Journal entries presented below incorporate previously published materials — essays, satires, poems, translations and commentaries — that have appeared from 1 July 2017, the twentieth anniversary of Beijing’s take over of the former British crown territory.
In the first instalment of ‘Hong Kong, The Best China’, we introduced readers to recent commentaries by the veteran journalist Lee Yee 李怡 (李秉堯). Founding editor of The Seventies Monthly 七十年代月刊 (later renamed The Nineties Monthly) Lee Yee has been a prominent commentator on Chinese, Hong Kong and Taiwan politics, as well as the global scene, for over forty-five years. His position has gone from that of being a sympathetic interlocutor with the People’s Republic in the late 1970s to that of outspoken rebel and man of conscience from the early 1980s. For decades Lee has analysed Hong Kong politics and society with a clarity of vision, and in a clarion voice, rare among the territory’s writers. The essays translated in The Best China are from ‘Ways of the World’ 世道人生, the regular column Lee Yee writes for Apple Daily 蘋果日報.
The Best China
- Cauldron 鼎, China Heritage, 1 July 2017
- Yau Ma Tei’s Hong Kong Rhapsody, China Heritage, 4 July 2017
- Twenty Views of Fragrant Harbour, China Heritage, 8 July 2017
- The Floating City 浮城, China Heritage, 12 July 2017
- 1 October 2017 — The Best China, China Heritage, 1 October 2017
- Lee Yee, Playing by Peking’s Rules, Asian Wall Street Journal, 11-12 July 1986
- The Ayes Have It, China Heritage, 18 October 2017
- Lee Yee, What’s New About Such Thinking? — The Best China, II, China Heritage, 5 November 2017
- Lee Yee, The Unbuilt Wall of Sorrow — on the centenary of the Russian Revolution (The Best China, III), China Heritage, 7 November 2017
- Lee Yee, Who’s on First — China’s Successive Failures (The Best China, IV), China Heritage, 20 November 2017
- Lee Yee, China Bound — meeting and eating (The Best China, V), China Heritage, 15 December 2017
- Lee Yee, Hollow Men, Wooden People (The Best China, VI), China Heritage, Christmas Eve, 2017
- Lee Yee, A Very Hong Kong Xmas (The Best China VII), China Heritage, Boxing Day, 2017
- Lee Yee, The Year 1971 (The Best China VIII), China Heritage, 28 February 2018
- Lee Yee, The Real Man of the Year of the Dog — Dog Days (III) / (The Best China IX), China Heritage, 2 March 2018
- Lee Yee, A Landscape Desolate and Bare (The Best China X), China Heritage, 12 March 2018, also included in New Sinology Jottings
- Lee Yee, My Qingming (The Best China XI), China Heritage, 10 April 2018, also included in New Sinology Jottings and Wairarapa Readings
- Lee Yee, Doubtless and Clueless at Peking University (The Best China XII), China Heritage, 8 May 2018
- Geremie R. Barmé & Lee Yee, Deathwatch for a Chairman, China Heritage, 17 July 2018 (The Best China XIII and Watching China Watching XXXI)