Ms Sarah S.Y. Lee
BA History (University of Guelph), MA History: Asia/Africa (SOAS)
Early modern and modern history of China, particularly the late Qing; legacy of colonialism in Southeast Asia; inter-relationship(s) between globalisation and transnationalism in Southeast Asia; ethnic minorities and migrant workers in Hong Kong.
My research focuses on the historical movement of Filipino domestic workers in Hong Kong from the 1970s onwards and how their identities have changed or shifted since the handover of Hong Kong to the People’s Republic of China in 1997. There are two sides to my research. The first is to establish the self-identification of Filipino domestic workers in a Chinese-dominated society, and the second is to further illuminate the relationship between the representation of foreign domestics and the processes of globalisation. The research will also be two-fold as I aim to uncover aspects of oral and cultural history, as well as looking into immigration and census statistics. Using different lenses to examine different aspects of both government policy and the self-representation of Filipino domestic workers, I aim to understand how foreign migrant workers have come to locate themselves within their ‘host’ community, and to chart how they have negotiated their positions within post-colonial institutions, like that of the HKSAR.