The Department of History does more than just academic work. We also actively engage with our wider community in Hong Kong and beyond. Through our research and public engagement, we endeavor to bring to the broader community the importance and relevancy of to the everyday concerns of people and society, and to inform and empower the community.
Below are some of our projects:
HKPhil Swire Classic Insights
In Swire Classic Insights concerts "Soviet Realism, Absolute Power" (25 February 2017), "Remembering World War One, Part 1" (2 March 2018) and "Remembering World War One, Part 2" (3 March 2018), Dr. Oscar Sanchez-Sibony, Prof. David Pomfret and the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra joined forces, and explored together the 1930s Soviet Union and the First World War through music with multi-media, live orchestral performances and on-stage commentary.
Leung Shek Chee College Class Visit 2017-18
On 8 November 2017 the Department received a delegation of students from Leung Shek Chee College (LSCC) for the second time. The half-day visit was jointly organized by Dr. Carol Tsang from our department and Mr. Michael Chan, who is a LSCC teaching staff and our alumnus. The delegation attended two lectures of our Common Core contributions, CCHU9002 Battles for Bodies and CCHU9043 Rethinking Women, delivered by Dr. Carol Tsang. TELI-HKU (Technology-Enriched Learning Initiative) filmed the event and interviewed LSCC students, who expressed great satisfaction with the visit. LSCC teachers found the visit an ideal way for preparing their students for university education. The department and LSCC are exploring the possibility of organizing similar visits on a regular basis in the future.
Leung Shek Chee College Class Visit 2016-17
On 19 April 2017 the Department received a delegation of students from Leung Shek Chee College (LSCC). The whole-day visit was jointly organized by Dr. Carol Tsang and three LSCC teaching staff, Ms. Sally Yeung, Ms. Jannet Lam and Mr. Michael Chan, who are our alumni. The organizers aimed to introduce the Department's innovative teaching to members of the community and cultivate friendships between History staff, students and alumni.
Professor David Pomfret offered a warm welcome to the delegation and introduced our student, Mr. Leung Hui Yin, who ran a morning interactive seminar titled 'History Learning Through Multimedia'. The seminar forms a critical part of Mr. Leung's capstone experience in HIST4028 History Without Borders funded by the History Endowment Fund. The afternoon session includes two lectures of our Common Core contributions, CCHU9043 Rethinking Women and CCHU9002 Battles for Bodies, delivered by Dr. Carol Tsang.
'History Learning Through Multimedia' Seminar
Visits at CCHU9043 Rethinking Women and CCHU9002 Battles for Bodies
The People's Trilogy: A New Approach to the
Mao Era (1949-1976)
Professor Frank Dikötter's project constitutes a research effort unmatched in both the quantity and the quality of the archival evidence, the resulting three books - The Cultural Revolution: A People's History, 1962-1976 (2016), The Tragedy of Liberation: A History of the Chinese Revolution, 1945-1957 (2013), and Mao's Great Famine: The History of China's most Devastating Catastrophe, 1958-1962 (2010) - have shifted the ways in which both academic and lay readers view the Mao era (1949-1976) by providing, for the first time, systematic and profuse evidence drawn from dozens of party and overseas archives in the PRC to illustrate the impact of communism on ordinary people.
The Great Kantō Earthquake and a
New Understanding of Responses to Natural Disasters
Professor Charles Schencking's research has revolutionized the understanding of how the Japanese have experienced, responded to, and recovered from catastrophic natural disasters over the past 100 years. Apart from book and journal articles – traditional research outputs that speak to academics and journalists, this Project also gave birth to an interactive website including a publicly accessible image and map archive, a museum exhibition, a Discovery Channel TV documentary, and keynote speeches, introducing to millions of public how the Japanese have interpreted, constructed, and learned from natural calamities and become world leaders in disaster response, recovery, and resilience.
The Witness to War Project
Records and accounts about personal experiences in Hong Kong during the Second World War had always been scant. As time is running shorter and shorter for the War survivors, Dr. Peter Cunich and Mr. Bruce MacNamara, a history teacher at Canadian International School, came up with The Witness to War Project, a unique collaboration with local secondary schools.
In this project, the Department of History worked closely with the University Archives and the local secondary schools. The Department provided secondary school students with interview templates and briefings on historical methodology and the Second World War. The Archives showed the students about the University’s archival facilities and the importance of archiving historical documents. After the students interviewed their elderly family members about their war experiences, and recorded and transcribed the interviews, the Department selected the best interviews and placed them in the University Archives. Since 2006, more than 250 oral histories have been deposited at the Archives, making it the largest collection of publicly available interview transcripts on the Second World War in East Asia.