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Cement and 'Shanghai plaster' in British Hong Kong and Penang (1920s–1950s)

Medium: conference paper
Language(s): en 
Conference: 6th International Congress on Construction History (6ICCH 2018), July 9-13, 2018, Brussels, Belgium
Published in:
Page(s): 291-298
Year: 2018
Abstract: Since the early 1920s, a type of cement plaster called ‘Shanghai plaster' started to emerge in British Hong Kong and Malaya construction scenes. Using a constellation of lesser-known building projects as examples, this paper attempts to study the culture and pattern behind the diffusion of ‘Shanghai plaster' as a modern material. The cultural meaning behind ‘Shanghai plaster' reflected how overseas Chinese constructed their cultural identity through their architecture during the interwar years. It demonstrated that the transferal of modern architectural techniques often involved multiple centres and localities, and was far more complex than a unilateral transfer from the colonizer to the colonized world.

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