The Story of Hong Kong Literature
In conjunction with his lecture at UBC, Professor Kwok Kou Leonard Chan gave a public talk in Cantonese on March 8, 2018 to a large and enthusiastic audience at the Richmond Public Library, British Columbia. In this talk, hosted by UBC faculty members, Professor Chan spoke about his views on Hong Kong literature and his experience as chief editor of the new twelve-volume Compendium of Hong Kong Literature 1919-1949 《香港文學大系 1919–1949》 (12 vols; 2014–2016). Professor Chan pointed out that Hong Kong literature has long been ignored partly because historical accounts of it were mostly produced by Mainland scholars around the time of the 1997 handover. Concerns about the quality and accuracy of these narratives gave rise to an attempt to preserve the best writings and to present Hong Kong literature in a systematic way, which led to the Compendium. Professor Chan expressed his hope that the anthology succeeded in configuring the framework of Hong Kong literary history from a local yet broadminded perspective.