One system, different culture

From the moment, in July 1997, that China became Hong Kong’s sovereign, two visions of the city-state’s future vied for ascendancy. Hongkongers wanted democracy, the Chinese Communist Party demanded obedience. Hongkongers wished to preserve their traditions, the CCP resolved to uproot them. In the eyes of China’s leaders, Hongkongers were unpatriotic, calling themselves “Hong Kong … Read more

Colossus of Egyptian culture

In the late 1920s, a young Egyptian scholar wrote a letter to one of Cairo’s most famous intellectuals, Taha Hussein: “just as they said of old ‘we are students of Socrates or Aristotle’ … so we are students of Doctor Taha Hussein”, he gushed. Leaving the obsequiousness to one side, this is a hard statement … Read more