The English Business

Caroline Knowles and Douglas Harper

in Hong Kong

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print February 2010 | ISBN: 9780226448565
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226448589 | DOI:
The English Business

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This chapter discusses the teaching of English language as a business. This business served British migrants for whom it provided an alternative to the uncomfortable proximities that might have been forged with the local Chinese population through their language. The English language business is not just about language, it is about the business of being English in migration. Being able to operate in English, not having to learn Cantonese is a privilege and a form of separation. English is rebranded as the language of international business success. It is now tied to Hong Kong's survival as a viable city of international commerce in competition with Beijing and Shanghai. The British education system in Hong Kong is instituted through the ESF and British-oriented International Schools. The system is as highly stratified as the Chinese system in which it sits. It differentiates among British and English-speaking migrants.

Keywords: English language; teaching; Hong Kong; British; business; education systems; competition; migration

Chapter.  4528 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Urban and Rural Studies

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