“Theological Reflections on the Hong Kong Umbrella Movement” (Tse & Tan, eds.)

In May, Palgrave Macmillan will release “Theological Reflections on the Hong Kong Umbrella Movement,” edited by Justin K. H. Tse (University of Washington), and Jonathan Y. Tan (Case Western Reserve University).  The publisher’s description follows:

This book gathers the voices of four local Hong Kong theologians to reflect on the 2014 democracy protests in the city from the perspectives of Catholic social teaching, Unknownfeminist and queer intersectionality, Protestant liberation, and textual exegesis. The volume also includes an extended primer on Hong Kong politics to aid readers as they reflect on the theology underlying the democracy protests.
September 28, 2014 is known as the day that political consciousness in Hong Kong began to shift. As police fired eighty-seven volleys of tear gas at protesters demanding “genuine universal suffrage” in Hong Kong, the movement (termed the “Umbrella Movement”) ignited a polarizing set of debates over civil disobedience, government collusion with private interests, and democracy. The Umbrella Movement was also a theological watershed moment, a time for religious reflection. This book analyzes the role that religion played in shaping the course of this historic movement.

Kapai on Freedom of Conscience in Hong Kong

Puja Kapai (University of Hong Kong – Centre for Comparative and Public Law) has posted Freedom of Conscience and Religious Belief. The abstract follows.

Although the freedom of religion is a constitutionally guaranteed right in numerous jurisdictions around the world, ambiguities surrounding the content of the right continue to baffle courts as well as religious subjects seeking protection pursuant to the right the world over. The conceptual underpinnings of the right continue to prove elusive. This paper traces the journey of Hong Kong courts in the elaboration of various aspects of this right through an examination of local jurisprudence to determine the scope and limits of the protections as enshrined in the Basic Law of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR). An examination of the jurisprudence indicates the need for a sophisticated approach towards the construction of religion. Given the limitations inherent in any attempt to comprehensively categorize social and psychological phenomena, particularly in light of the importance of the liberty of conscience, the task becomes increasingly challenging given the amorphous nature of the right and the likely ramifications if it is over-extended.
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