Neither a borrower nor a lender be? Better to question how to borrow

An exploration of Asia as method in teaching Drama-in-Education in Hong Kong

Authored by: Po Chi Tam

Routledge International Handbook of Schools and Schooling in Asia

Print publication date:  May  2018
Online publication date:  May  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138908499
eBook ISBN: 9781315694382
Adobe ISBN:


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The aim of this chapter is to work with the notion of critical syncretism taken from Chen Kuan-Hsing’s, ‘Asia as method’, in order to examine my own practices as a teacher educator who has responsibilities for teaching drama within the hybridised cultural context in Hong Kong. Taking examples of data that are drawn from a four-year action research, I illustrate my own efforts to resist either valorising or negating Western drama practices. Following Chen, I use the notion of critical syncretism where ideas about learning drawn from a Taoist story are used as an Asian anchoring point as well as a source for developing Drama-in-Education practices. The chapter goes on to illustrate how the concept of critical syncretism allows for a creative reinvention of drama practices that both nurture Asian cultural sensibilities and recognise that such sensibilities have in themselves brushed up against and been influenced by (post)colonialism.

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