Language policies and linguistic ecology in Hong Kong and Macau

Tae Hee CHOI, Wai Him Vincent KAN

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapters


This chapter analyses how the growing influence of China in the two Special Administrative Regions (SARs) is working on their linguistic ecologies given the different interactions between the respective historical, political, and other features. After the Second World War, the British government sought a degree of integration between the local people and the expatriates in their colonial management. The continued strength of English in Hong Kong and the rise of Chinese from having no status (pre-1974) to full status (1997) can be explained by social and economic factors. In education, policymakers have been seeking to increase mother tongue education since the 1980s, which has drawn at least some support from academia and schools. The central Chinese government connects the preference for Putonghua over local dialects with national identity, thus, it promotes Putonghua in regions in China where local dialects are powerful including Hong Kong. Copyright © 2022 selection and editorial matter, Bob Adamson and Anwei Feng; individual chapters, the contributors.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMultilingual China: National, minority and foreign languages
EditorsBob ADAMSON, Anwei FENG
Place of PublicationAbingdon, Oxon; New York, NY
ISBN (Electronic)9780429286056
ISBN (Print)9780367251031, 9781032151410
Publication statusPublished - 2021


Choi, T.-H., & Kan, V. (2021). Language policies and linguistic ecology in Hong Kong and Macau. In B. Adamson & A. Feng (Eds.), Multilingual China: National, minority and foreign languages (pp. 59-71). Abingdon, Oxon; New York, NY: Routledge.


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