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李肇祐:在香港,認同「中華民族」的人,心裏是怎樣的「中華」?
在最近一项研究中,我提出香港人的中国人身分认同,或取决于一些关于人类社群的基本信念。具体一点来说,他们到底倾向相信社群的特征会受外在环境影响,抑或是难以改变的?

根据 Molden 和 Dweck (2006)的观点,人们对社群的信念大致可分为两类:可塑(malleable)和固定(fixed)。前者假设社群的属性以至当中成员的行为皆是由环境决定,会因领袖变化等外部因素而改变;后者则相信社群的特征是(近乎)固定的,甚至与生俱来。我们经常听到的“民族性”、“族群基因”论(如“古巴人有快乐的基因”),隐含的正是此类信念。

社群的可塑性为他们在中港矛盾中维持中国人身分认同提供了一个基础。

首先,两个实验组别的参加者对社群的可塑性的看法有显著差异,表明“科普文章”成功刺激他们对有关议题产生特定看法。其次,那些收到强调族群可塑性文章的参加者普遍比另一实验组别的参加者有更高的中国人身分认同。由于参加者所阅读的文章乃随机选出,我们有较大的信心推断参加者关于社群可塑性的想法与中国人身分认同存在一定因果关系。

今天全球环绕身分认同的冲突此起彼落,我们有必要找出,是甚么导致很多文化上有共通点、表面上能够和平共存的群体(如香港人和内地人)隔阂越来越深?

自2000年代以来,香港政府不断努力提高市民对中华民族的认同。通过社会组织,课程改革和交流活动,香港人,特别是学生,被灌输香港“自古以来”就是中华民族的一分子,有共同的历史及文化,中华民族各成员的关系“血浓于水”,彼此“同根同心”。与此同时,中国内不同族群之间的矛盾及差异则被有系统的掩盖。在中港两地人心愈走愈远的今天,或许我们该问,这些看似政治正确的宣传,会否同时令人对社群产生僵化的印象,或如赵永佳教授(2016)所说,令香港人缺乏面对一个复杂多元的中国的“抗体”,导致他们在面对中港间种种冲突时,对“中华民族”更加抗拒呢?
research  community  identity  nation  origin  poll  experiment  hongkong  chinese 
may 2019 by aries1988
The Clash of Ignorance

Samuel Huntington’s article "The Clash of Civilizations?" appeared in the Summer 1993 issue of Foreign Affairs, where it immediately attracted a surprising amount of attention and reaction
to supply Americans with an original thesis about "a new phase" in world politics after the end of the cold war,

Certainly neither Huntington nor Lewis has much time to spare for the internal dynamics and plurality of every civilization, or for the fact that the major contest in most modern cultures concerns the definition or interpretation of each culture, or for the unattractive possibility that a great deal of demagogy and downright ignorance is involved in presuming to speak for a whole religion or civilization. No, the West is the West, and Islam Islam.

Instead of seeing it for what it is–the capture of big ideas (I use the word loosely) by a tiny band of crazed fanatics for criminal purposes–

what is so threatening about that presence? Buried in the collective culture are memories of the first great Arab-Islamic conquests, which began in the seventh century and which, as the celebrated Belgian historian Henri Pirenne wrote in his landmark book Mohammed and Charlemagne (1939), shattered once and for all the ancient unity of the Mediterranean, destroyed the Christian-Roman synthesis and gave rise to a new civilization dominated by northern powers (Germany and Carolingian France) whose mission, he seemed to be saying, is to resume defense of the "West" against its historical-cultural enemies.

These are tense times, but it is better to think in terms of powerful and powerless communities, the secular politics of reason and ignorance, and universal principles of justice and injustice, than to wander off in search of vast abstractions that may give momentary satisfaction but little self-knowledge or informed analysis
muslim  debate  islam  terrorism  power  community  civ  conflict  europe  population  theory  leader  instapaper_favs 
october 2018 by aries1988
Yuval Noah Harari challenges the future according to Facebook
If Facebook really attempts to formulate a set of universal values, it will enjoy one big advantage over many previous institutions that attempted to do so. Unlike the early Christian church, or Lenin’s Communist party, Facebook is a truly global network with close to 2bn users. Yet Facebook also suffers from one big disadvantage. Unlike the Christian church and the Communist party, it is an online network.

Physical communities have a depth that virtual communities cannot hope to match, at least not in the near future.

People estranged from their bodies, senses and physical environment are likely to feel alienated and disoriented.

People feel bound by elections only when they share a basic bond with most other voters. The ancient tribes along the Yellow River lacked a common set of values, and consequently they were unable to unite through a peaceful democratic process. It took a lot of violence to hammer them together into a single empire.

If something exciting happens, the gut instinct of Facebook true-believers is to draw their smartphones, take a picture, post it online, and wait for the “likes”. In the process they hardly pay attention to what they actually feel. Indeed, what they feel is increasingly determined by the online reactions rather than by the actual experience.

(A blueprint of such an alternative model has actually been suggested recently by Tristan Harris, an ex-Googler and tech-philosopher who came up with a new metric of “time well spent”.)
2017  future  thinking  opinion  Facebook  community  human  social-network  online  body  comparison 
march 2017 by aries1988
Au Québec, les dangers de « l’insécurité culturelle »
L’attaque contre la mosquée de Québec est l’une des plus graves à s’être produites dans le monde occidental. La province est contrainte à l’examen de conscience.
quebec  reportage  community  muslim  canada  history  politics  identity 
february 2017 by aries1988
An American Hero in China | ChinaFile
The answer is partly that reporters in free societies have an obligation to dissect problems. Journalists at home rarely write about the highways that work because this is assumed to be a given; what citizens need to know about is the backlog of unrepaired bridges. But when applied abroad, this practice means a steady stream of negative stories with no overall sense of the broad situation of the country—in the case of China, reports of dissidents, internecine contests for power, and impending crises.

countless studies show that one of the best measures to alleviate poverty is building infrastructure, and here we were on a road that was something of a miracle to local people, allowing them to get their products to market, their children to schools, and themselves to jobs in the cities. China was in the midst of an unparalleled and largely successful attempt to reduce poverty, so why wouldn’t we write about this, he asked. All I could do was stammer that good news is no news. Back in Beijing a few days later, I wrote a story about a girl who was so poor she lived in a pig stall. My editors loved it and readers pledged money, but I was often nagged by the feeling that this had been the easy story. More challenging to expectations would have been to look at how lives had changed in this poor part of the country.

Hessler saw the story of China in the 1990s and 2000s as driven not by nationally known personalities or dramatic news events, but by an epochal movement of hundreds of millions of people out of poverty, and out of the village life that had dominated Chinese civilization. It was the rise of individuals—people with their own aspirations and goals, which they pursued in the space granted by the post-Mao state. Hessler lived in China while people like future Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo were publicly active, but he never wrote about them. To him, they might be noble but were marginal. That they were persecuted proved the state’s paranoia, not their larger significance for China’s future.

In each place, the same pattern emerged: the most talented people either were recruited by the Party or quietly disengaged from it. The only people who actually fought the Party were poorly connected and often dysfunctional—petitioners, for example, or other marginal figures. Many were interesting and he wrote about them in depth, but they were not driving events.

This is why I think it’s a big mistake to focus too much on the high-profile and truly remarkable dissidents, Hessler told me. It gives the American reader the impression that the really smart people in China are opposed to the Party.

These strongly held ideas underpin his books. Many journalists in China have been turned off—I often heard them say they wished he would finally tackle a real topic rather than his allegorical tales from small towns.
reportage  journalism  journalist  china  american  community  pattern  history 
may 2015 by aries1988

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