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Li Siu Cheong, Angus

MPhil student

Email: siucheongli@life.hkbu.edu.hk

Academic training in Cultural Studies and Sociology. Educated at Lingnan University (MCS) and Hong Kong Baptist University (BSocSc). Research interests include cultural studies, human rights, policing, and critical race theory. Currently researching on police practice, ethnic minorities and human rights in Hong Kong.

Police Practice, Ethnic Minorities, and Human Rights in Hong Kong:

A Cultural-Legal and Representational Study


“Human Rights” is a concept usually mobilized by us in the present days when encountering exploitation and subordination. However, Cultural Studies scholarship does not engage much in the discussion of human rights. Being a discipline in response to the unique context and historical point, Cultural Studies, in the words of Lawrence Grossberg, that the task is “not only doing cultural studies conjuncturally but also reinventing cultural studies itself—its theories and its questions—in response to conjunctural conditions and demands” (Grossberg, 2006: 8). Given the obligation of the discipline, John Erni (2012) asserts that there is a need “…to take Cultural Studies somewhere from which it has largely stayed away—the domain of formalized institutional rules of engagement in general, and international human rights law in particular—and in so doing, open a door for critical scholarship to flow.” (Erni, 2012: 176)

In contributing to the “reinvention of Cultural Studies”, this research project makes an attempt in building up the linkage between human rights and Cultural Studies by analyzing human rights violation by police towards ethnic minorities in Hong Kong.

The police’s treatment towards civilians on the ethnic basis could be a violation of human rights, according to the basic tenets of anti-discrimination. This study focuses on the controversial Limbu Case, which a Nepalese man named Limbu Dil Bahadur was shot dead by a police constable in Ho Man Tin on March 17, 2009 (court case codes: CCDI 298/2009, HCAL 85/2010, DCPI 570/2012). By conducting a court case analysis in conjunction with cultural theory and legal theory, this study employs critical race theory to decode the discourses of racialization and public order often found in racially biased cases of police abuse. Other than a combined cultural-legal analysis, this project plans to study media representations of encounters between police officers and ethnic minorities in Hong Kong, especially the local newspaper portrayals of crime-related incidents in which South Asians are depicted to be involved in.  It is hoped that this proposed MPhil research will contribute a new angle to cultural studies analysis of race/ethnicity politics, by formulating an innovative methodology for analyzing the complex relations among identity, political institutions, law, social order, and power.