Rice scarcity in World War II Macao : The local experience revisited

Venus VIANA, Kyung Yeob KIM

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


After Hong Kong fell on Christmas Day 1941, the ongoing war threatened life in isolated, neutral Macao. While many scholars have attributed the local people's starvation and suffering to the war, others have highlighted Macao's economic prosperity. To explain the gap between these two narratives, this article explores how the locals dealt with rice scarcity and fared relatively well during the four years of Japanese occupation of the Pearl River Delta. Instead of blaming the shortage solely on the machinations of the Japanese and the rice merchants, we uncover the local people's actions in exacerbating the problem.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)518-541
Number of pages24
JournalUrban History
Issue number3
Early online date13 Mar 2019
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2019

Bibliographical note

We sincerely thank the two reviewers for their insightful comments. This research is partially funded by the following grants: ‘Reenacting “cultural China” in the twentieth century’ (RGC-GRF Ref. no.: 14617915) and ‘Recapture “endangering” social life’ (Research Committee, CUHK, Ref. no. 3132938).


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