SUPPORTING HONG KONG FROM A DISTANCE An interview study with members of the Hong Kong diaspora in Sweden on their transnational engagement towards the Hong Kong protest movement of 2019-2020
In the summer of 2019, Hong Kong experienced a challenging and turbulent uprising that pushed the city to the verge of revolution. The aim of this study is to investigate transnational engagement amongst members of the Hong Kong diaspora in Sweden. The study’s qualitative material is obtained through semi-structured interviews with members of the Hong Kong diaspora in Sweden. I apply a theoretical framework consisting of my theoretical perspective: transnationalism and diaspora, a number of analytical tools: economic, social and political remittances, Van Hear’s (2014) three social spheres: the household/extended family sphere, the known community sphere and the imagined community sphere, and two theoretical concepts: capacity and desire. Consequently, I address the following research question: how, and why, do members of the Hong Kong diaspora in Sweden engage transnationally in the Hong Kong protest movement of 2019-2020? The main findings of this research are that economic, social and political remittances are transnationally transferred towards the three social spheres to a varying extent and travel both from host to home country, and vice versa. The most common type of engagement through which members of the Hong Kong diaspora in Sweden engage transnationally in the protest movement is by arranging and participating in politically motivated demonstrations. Members of the Hong Kong diaspora engage because their capacity to do so is increased in Sweden, but also as they experience strong expectations on themselves to support the movement. Additionally, sentiments of guilt and pride are driving them to engage in the protest movement.
Hong Kong protest movement of 2019-2020,