Go West: Bruce Lee Representations in Contemporary Hong Kong and China

By Catherine S. Chan.

Published by The International Journal of Communication and Linguistic Studies

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Published online: January 23, 2015 $US10.00
Published online: January 23, 2015 $US5.00

Bruce Lee is the epitome of internationalization. In the seventies when his movies broke into the global cinema, a kung fu wave swept across countries, and overnight Bruce Lee became a household name. Leaving behind only four major works and an iconic status, Bruce Lee’s sudden death left a vacuum for open interpretation, allowing the martial artist to be remolded according to ever-changing contemporary desires. Through an examination of texts, images and social interaction concerning the repackaging of Bruce Lee as a diplomatic ambassador, this study sheds light first on the general image that China and Hong Kong separately intend to convey to the outside world. In addition, the collective identities and social values imagined and maintained by the mainland Chinese and Hong Kong people are further exposed in the process of making of their very own Bruce Lee.

Keywords: Bruce Lee, Transnationalism, Cultural Diplomacy

The International Journal of Communication and Linguistic Studies, Volume 12, Issue 3-4, January 2015, pp.1-12. Published online: January 23, 2015 (Article: Print (Spiral Bound)). Published online: January 23, 2015 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 781.740KB)).

Catherine S. Chan

Senior Research Assistant, Department of History, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong, Hong Kong

Catherine S. Chan completed her M.Phil. degree in History at the Hong Kong Baptist University. Concentrating in historical research on US-German relations, Chinese diaspora and Hong Kong popular culture, she has published a number of articles on the specialized topics.