This article studies the sociolinguistic and social semiotic transgression enacted by a group of political signs in a public university in Hong Kong. It demonstrates how the signs break normative/stabilized social, cultural and political boundaries and order by mixing up multifarious stylistic and generic resources, resulting in a heteroglossic blending of diverse, often incongruent identities, voices and ideologies predominantly rooted in the modern history of Greater China. The article suggests that this heteroglossia ideologically distances the university away from the state, defends its historical, Western-style autonomy and aligns it with the local pro-democracy civil society amid the escalating sociopolitical tensions in Hong Kong particularly after the Umbrella Movement in 2014. It shows the value of linguistic and semiotic landscape research on institutions as dynamic and complex communities and discursive spaces. Copyright © 2022 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
CitationHuang, C. F. (2022). Transgression in institutional space: Heteroglossic political signs in a Hong Kong university. Journal of Sociolinguistics, 26(4), 441-461. doi: 10.1111/josl.12554
- Hong Kong
- Political signs