“One City One Book Hong Kong 2023” Campaign
The Department of Literature and Cultural Studies (LCS) and The International Research Centre for Cultural Studies (IRCCS) at The Education University of Hong Kong (EdUHK) have announced that Bison, a book-length collection of short stories by the Hong Kong writer Ng Hui Bun or Xubin, has been chosen as the book for this year’s “One City One Book” campaign. The project will also celebrate Yōkai, a picture book by the Spanish illustrator Manuel Marsol. Both books focus on the relationships among people, animals and the natural world.
“One City, One Book” is a community reading initiative, which aims to encourage as many people as possible to read and discuss a single book at around the same time. From September to December 2023, the project invites students, scholars and readers of all kinds to focus their attention on one single book. A series of activities related to the chosen book will be held, including discussions of the book and its themes, alongside exhibitions, school activities, cultural performances and library events. The initiative’s goals are to build a sense of community and to promote reading, discussion, and civic engagement.
Bison is a classic of Hong Kong literature, and is unique because it focuses less on the urban scene or the local situation than the binding, mutable connection between humanity and the planet. Xubin’s stories take characters from desert, to mountains, to the depths of the jungle, constantly enquiring about how we can be in relation with, rather than alienated from, the world of nature. The same questions animate Yōkai, in which a lorry driver who stops in the mountains has a series of transformative encounters with spirits of the forest.
The Director of One City One Book Hong Kong, Dr Jeffrey Clapp, Associate Professor of LCS, said, “Hong Kong literature isn’t just one thing, just like Hong Kong is not only one place. Xubin’s work can lead us from the top of Hong Kong’s mountains to its most outlying islands, showing us the ways that our city exists in relation to mammals, weather, water, and soil. By reading this book together, we offer everybody the opportunity to enjoy Xubin’s distinctive perspectives, while also building a stronger sense of community.”
For more information, please visit the official website of “One City One Book Hong Kong" at www.onecityonebook.hk or its Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/onecityonebookhk.