When Hong Kong was under the British, they experienced economic growth that far outpaced the communist-ruled cities of China and was far richer than China (United Nations, 2012). As a result, Hong Kongers had the view that they were of higher class than their Mainland Chinese counterparts, who were often described as “country bumpkins” (BBC News, 2012). However in recent years, the huge economic growth in China has resulted in a lot more wealthy Chinese individuals going to Hong Kong as tourists. In fact, shopping expenditures from the Mainland Chinese alone contributed to 6% of Hong Kong’s GDP in 2011 (South China Morning Post, 2012).
Adopting the conflict theorist perspective, social order is maintained by domination, with power in the hands of those with the greatest political, economic and social resources (Brym & Lie, 2007). In the time when Hong Kong was still much more economically dominant over Mainland China, the Hong Kongers were considered more powerful and privileged, since they were often the employers and investors in Mainland China. However, the recent economic boom in China has caused a change.
In the article, Chinese women are crossing over to Hong Kong to deliver their babies so that their babies would get automatic Hong Kong permanent residency, entitling them to a whole spectrum of benefits. This is an epitome of the subordinate class trying to increase their advantages. The outcry from the Hong Kongers, as the incumbent privileged class, shows how they will try to maintain their advantages and prevent the subordinate class from gaining advantages that should only be entitled to them. The resulting effect of the class struggles is social instability, as shown by the huge protest turnout on the anniversary of the Handover of Hong Kong to China in 2012 (The New York Times, 2012), frequent Mainland Chinese-Hong Konger conflicts (TIME, 2012), and huge public outcry asking the current Chief Executive of Hong Kong, who is believed to be...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document