Is the Battle for Democracy in Hong Kong Lost? w/ Stephen Vines

22 Apr 2021 – 19:45 — 20:30 BST
Bristol Festival of Ideas (online)

Stephen Vines and Emily Wai-hing Lau look at how Hong Kong has become one of the key battles for democracy.

It is where the people have been challenging the authority of the People’s Republic of China. But is Xi’s China as unshakeable as it seems? What are China’s real interests in Hong Kong? Why are Beijing’s time-honoured means of control no longer working there? And where does this leave Hongkongers themselves?

Stephen Vines has lived in Hong Kong for over three decades. His book shrewdly unpacks the Hong Kong–China relationship and its wider significance—right up to the astonishing convergence of political turmoil and international crisis with Covid-19 and the 2020–21 crackdown.

Vividly describing the uprising from street level, Vines explains how and why it unfolded, and its global repercussions. Now, the international community is reassessing relations with Beijing, just as Hong Kong’s rebellion and China’s handling of the pandemic have exposed the regime’s weakness. In a crisis that has become existential all round, what lies ahead for Hong Kong, China and the world?

Stephen Vines is a Hong Kong-based journalist who hosts current affairs TV show The Pulse. The founding editor of the Eastern Express, and author of Hong Kong: China’s New Colony among other books, he has worked for the BBC, The ObserverThe GuardianThe Daily TelegraphThe Independent and The Sunday Times.

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