Contentious politics in two villages: Anti-high-speed-rail campaigns in Hong Kong and Taiwan

Research output: Book/ReportBooks

Abstract

The central thesis of this study is derived from a pair of seemingly anomalous cases involving anti-high-speed-rail campaigns in Hong Kong and Taiwan, respectively. While the unprecedentedly high degree of public participation in the anti-Express Rail Link movement in early 2010 stands in stark contrast with previous social movements in Hong Kong, the conspicuous absence in Taiwan of an organized force of opposition against the High Speed Rail development in the late 1990s also sets this case apart from other similar local contentious responses. By probing into the contrasting and distinctive cases of the high-speed rail controversies in Hong Kong and Taiwan, the cases of Choi Yuen Village and Liujia Village in particular, this study highlights the salient role of the political opportunity structure in determining the forms of political interaction with the state — namely, transgressive contention and contained contention. Contrary to the depiction in the “expanding political opportunity” literature, this study finds that while a constricting political opportunity structure encourages the emergence of transgressive contention, a further expanding of the political opportunity structure will indeed give rise to contained contention. Finally, this study also pinpoints the importance of organizational dynamics in determining the intensity of mobilization.
本論文主要就香港和台灣兩地對興建高速鐵路的不同回應作比較研究。2010年初,一萬多名香港人曾就反對興建高鐵和遷拆菜園村圍堵中環立法會。在香港的社會運動歷史中,是次反高鐵運動的動員人數實屬史無前例。另一邊廂,雖然反對興建基建的抗爭一直是台灣社會運動的中流砥柱,但具組織性的反高鐵運動卻沒有在1990年代末形成。本研究通過比較兩地的反高鐵運動,並以兩條因高鐵而要被遷拆的村落 — 香港八鄉菜園村和台灣新竹六家庄 — 作個案研究,從而指出政治機會結構在影響不同模式的抗爭政治(逾越界限的抗爭和有節制的抗爭)出現時所扮演的重要角色。與「擴張政治機會」的文獻所描繪相反,本研究揭示收緊的政治機會結構亦會帶來所謂逾越界限的抗爭,而持續擴張的政治機會結構則會帶來有節制的抗爭。最後,本論文亦探討社會運動的組織過程對動員程度所帶來的影響。 Copyright © 2014 Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies. All Rights Reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationHong Kong
PublisherHong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
ISBN (Print)9624412308, 9789624412307
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2014

Citation

Chiu, S. W.-K., & Li, H. (2014). Contentious politics in two villages: Anti-high-speed-rail campaigns in Hong Kong and Taiwan. Hong Kong: Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies, The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Keywords

  • Alt. title: 《鄉村的抗爭政治:香港與台灣反高鐵運動的比較研究》

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