Lecture: Milk Tea Alliance, let's make protest cute again!
How a beverage reminiscent of colonial past unites the young protestors online across Asia against authoritarian China
In this pre-recorded performative talk, I will explain the recent formation of "Milk Tea Alliance" and other political memes in southeast Asia, their cultural roots and sociopolitical conditions. I would highlight the creativity and sense of humour in the way how young generation of pro-democracy protestors in Asia utilise social media and online mobilisation to gain international media attention and rapport as a strategy to supplement their social movements.
Following my talk River Crab, Harmony and Euphemism at the camp last year, I continue to decipher online civil disobedience and resistance in Asia in an informative and lighthearted way, providing the cultural and sociopolitical background for the chaotic and curious audience who don’t know where to start.
In this talk, I will explain the recent formation of Milk Tea Alliance, taking examples from social media posts, footage from protest sites, as well as widely circulated pro-democracy propaganda posters. Then I will review the cultural roots and sociopolitical conditions of such an alliance initiated by young protesters in Taiwan, Hong Kong and Thailand, united by their same goal to fight against authoritarianism and pursue a democratic future. What's the power of this hashtag? What has happened in these places? What do they want to change? Will they succeed? I don't promise to give you definite answers, but I would like to share a plethora of opinions from key figures in these movements and explain the mentality of these young people.
I intend to highlight the creativity and sense of humour in the way how young generation of pro-democracy protestors utilise social media and online mobilisation to gain international media attention and rapport as a strategy to supplement their off-line movements.
I plan to record myself making 3 different types of milk tea from Taiwan, Hong Kong and Thailand and add these videos as the background of my talk recorded in front of a green screen. So it’s not only about politics, it’s also a tutorial for you to learn how to make delicious milk tea while enjoying RC3 in the comfort and safety of your home.
To win the battle at the international front line through meme-powered solidarity, let’s make protests cute again!