What is it about?

The 2019 street protests in Hong Kong were a response to a perceived dichotomy between the promise of liberal democratic morality from the Executive, and the illiberal, undemocratic laws and policies that were delivered.

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Why is it important?

This research not only helps to explain why the 2019 Hong Kong protests were so popular and important: it shows that it is inevitable that similar protests will happen for the foreseeable future. It also produces a model of legitimacy for obedience and disobedience to law which can apply to any liberal or democratic state, based on constitutional moral principles: the UK, the USA, and many other countries besides.


This research is drawn from legal theory, political theory and moral philosophy.

James Greenwood-Reeves
University of Leeds

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: The Democracy Dichotomy: Framing the Hong Kong 2019 Street Protests as Legitimacy Counterclaims against an Incoherent Constitutional Morality, Asia Pacific Journal on Human Rights and the Law, May 2020, Brill,
DOI: 10.1163/15718158-02101003.
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