This book explores the history of the English language in China from the arrival of the first English-speaking traders in the early seventeenth century to the present. Kingsley Bolton brings together and examines a substantial body of historical, linguistic and sociolinguistic research on the description and analysis of English in Hong Kong and China. He uses early wordlists, satirical cartoons and data from journals and memoirs, as well as more conventional sources, to uncover the forgotten history of English in China and to show how contemporary Hong Kong English has its historical roots in Chinese pidgin English. The book also considers the varying status of English in mainland China over time, and recent developments since 1997. With its interdisciplinary perspective, the book will appeal not only to linguists, but to all those working in the fields of Asian studies and English studies, including those concerned with cultural and literary studies.
List of maps; List of illustrations; List of tables; Preface; Acknowledgements; 1. New Englishes and World Englishes: pluricentric approaches to English worldwide; 2. The sociolinguistics of English in late colonial Hong Kong, 1980-1997; 3. The archaeology of 'Chinese Englishes', 1637-1949; 4. The emergence of Hong Kong English as a 'new English'; 5. Hong Kong, China and Chinese Englishes; Appendices; References; Index.