The traditional view of the Hong Kong colonial economy is that it was dominated by Western companies, notably the great British merchant houses, and that these firms enlisted support from Chinese middlemen – the compradors – who were effectively agents working for the Western firms. This book, which presents a comprehensive overview of the compradors and their economic and social functions over the full period of colonial rule in Hong Kong, puts forward a different view. It shows that compradors existed before the beginning of British rule in 1842, discusses their economic and social roles in the colonial economy, roles which included activities for Western firms, for the government and to support compradors’ own commercial activities, and outlines how the comprador system evolved. Overall, the book demonstrates that the compradors played a key role in the formation and development of Hong Kong’s economy and society, that they were active participants, not just passive servants of Western companies.
bout the Author
Kaori Abe is a former postdoctoral fellow of Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, and has a PhD in History from the University of Bristol. Her main research areas are the history of Hong Kong, modern China and the British Empire in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.
- Publisher : Routledge; 1st edition (September 14, 2017)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 180 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1138684406
- ISBN-13 : 978-1138684409
- Item Weight : 13.6 ounces
- Dimensions : 6.14 x 0.44 x 9.21 inches