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Travis Kong

Dr Travis Shiu Ki Kong

Associate Professor

+852 3917 2055

9.17, 9/F., The Jockey Club Tower, Centennial Campus


I received my PhD in sociology from the University of Essex with a specialization in identity, sexuality and masculinity. I commit myself as a sociologist who critically applies Western theories to Chinese contexts and seeks out dialogues within and across the discipline of sociology in order to build towards a new understanding of Chinese sexuality under global capitalism. I mainly teach sexuality, queer theory, media and cultural studies. My research specializes in Chinese homosexuality and masculinity, prostitution in Hong Kong and China, social impacts of HIV/AIDS, and transnational Chinese sexuality.

My first single-authored book, Chinese Male Homosexualities: Memba, Tongzhi and Golden Boy, investigates Chinese gay masculinity, desire, sexuality, intimacy, identity and citizenship in contemporary Chinese societies, and within global culture. Through 90 life stories of Chinese men interviewed in Hong Kong, London and Mainland China (major sites: Guangdong, Shanghai and Beijing) and extensive ethnographic field trips over ten years, this book shows different gay male identities – such as the conspicuously consuming ‘memba’ in Hong Kong, the urban tongzhi, the ‘money boy’ in China and the feminised ‘golden boy’ in London – emerge in different locations, and are all caught up in the transnational flow of queer cultures which are at once local and global. Forwarded by Prof. Ken Plummer, this book has been reviewed by Prof. Lisa Rofel, Prof. David Eng, Prof. Chris Berry, Prof. Arlene Stein, and others.

I am the Editor of Sexualities, one of the leading international journals in the field of sexuality.

I am the Programme Director of a newly launched MSocSc programme in Media, Culture and Creative Cities.

Courses taught


University of Essex (UK)

Research interests

Gender and sexuality studies
Cultural and media studies
Contemporary social theory
Qualitative research methods

Current research

Chinese homosexuality and masculinity
Prostitution in Hong Kong and China
Social impacts of HIV/AIDS
Transnational Chinese sexuality

Honours and recognitions

HKU-Kings Fellowship, 2014.
Social Sciences Faculty Outstanding Teaching Award, 2013.

Selected publications

2016, forthcoming. “The Sexual in Chinese Sociology: Homosexuality Studies in Contemporary China”. Sociological Review

2015. “The Fourth Wave? A Critical Reflection on Tongzhi Movement in Hong Kong”. In Mark McLelland and Vera Mackie (eds.) The Routledge Handbook of Sexuality Studies in East Asia. London and New York: Routledge. (co-authored with Lau Hoi Leung and Li Cheuk Yin)

2015. “Buying Sex as Edgework: Hong Kong Male Clients in Commercial Sex”. British Journal of Criminology, published online: 25 May.

2015. “Romancing the Boundary: Client Masculinities in the Chinese Sex Industry.” Culture, Health and Sexuality, published online: 20 February.

(2014) 。《男男正傳︰香港年長男同志口述史》。香港:進一步多媒體有限公司。[Oral History of Older Gay Men in Hong Kong. Hong Kong: Stepforward Multimedia (in Chinese)]

2014. “Male Sex Work in China”. In Victor Minichiello and John Scott (eds.) Male Sex Work and Society. New York: Harrington Press.

2012. “Fading Queer Heterotopia: Hong Kong Older Gay Men’s Queer Use of SpacesSexualities, 15 (8): 896-916.

2012. “Men Who have Sex with Men: Stigma and Discrimination” The Lancet 2012 Special Theme Series: Men who Have Sex with Men and HIV 380: 439-445. (co-authored with Dennis Altman, Peter Aggleton, Michael Williams, Vasu Reddy, David Harrad, Toni Reis, and Richard Parker)

2012. “Reinventing the Self under Socialism: The Case of Migrant Male Sex Workers in China.” Critical Asian Studies 44 (2): 283-308.

2012. “Sex Entrepreneurs in the New China”. Contexts 11 (3): 28-33. (PDF)

2012 “Chinese Male Bodies: A Transnational Study of Masculinity and Sexuality.” In B. Turner (ed.) The Routledge International Handbook of Body Studies. London: Routledge. Pp. 289-306.

2012. “Relationship Type, Condom Use and HIV/AIDS Risks among Men Who Have Sex with Men in Six Chinese Cities”. AIDS Care24 (4): 517-528 (co-authored with K.J. Laidler and Herbert. Pang)

2011.“Transnational Queer Labour: The “Circuits of Desire” of Money boys in China”. English Language Notes, 49 (1): 139-144.

2011. Chinese Male Homosexualities: Memba, Tongzhi and Golden Boy. London: Routledge.

2010.“Outcast Bodies: Money, Sex and Desire of Money Boys in Mainland China”. In Yau Ching (ed.) As Normal As Possible: Negotiating Sexuality and Gender in Mainland China and Hong Kong. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press. Pp. 17-35.

2009.“More than a Sex Machine: Accomplishing Masculinity among Chinese Male Sex Workers in the Hong Kong Sex Industry”. Deviant Behavior, 30 (Nov): 715-745. (PDF)

2009.“Where is My Brokeback Mountain?Social Transformations in Chinese Societies (Special Issue: Doing Families in Hong Kong), 4: 135-59.

2008.“Risk Factors Affecting Condom Use among Male Sex Workers Who Serve Men in China: A Qualitative Study”. Sexually Transmitted Infections, 84: 444-8.

2007.“To Determine Factors in an Initiation of a Same-sex Relationship in Rural China: Using Ethnographic Decision Model”. AIDS Care, 19 (7): 850-857. (co-authored with William C.W. Wong).

2006. “What It Feels Like for a Whore: The Body Politics of Women Performing Erotic Labour in Hong Kong.Gender, Work and Organization, 13 (5): 409-434.

2006. “The HIV-related Risks among Men Having Sex with Men in Rural Yunnan, China: A Qualitative study.Sexually Transmitted Infections. 82: 127-130. (co-authored with W.C.W. Wong, J.B. Zhang, S.C. Wu, and D.C.Y. Ling)

2006. “Asian Sexual Cultures.” In G. Ritzer (ed.) Encyclopedia of Sociology. London: Blackwell. Pp. 4213-4218.

2006. “Sexualizing Asian Male Bodies.” In Steven Seidman, Nancy Fischer, and Chet Meeks (eds.) Introducing The New Sexuality Studies. New York: Routledge. Pp. 90-95.

2006. Multiple entries [22] in David Gerstner (ed.) Queer Culture: The Routledge Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender Contemporary International Culture. New York and London: Routledge.

2005. “Queering Masculinity in Hong Kong Movies.” In Pang Lai-kwan and Day Wong (eds.) Masculinities and Hong Kong Cinema. Hong Kong: Hong Kong University Press. Pp. 57-80.

2005. Rethinking and Recasting Citizenship: Social Exclusion and Marginality in Chinese Societies. Hong Kong: Centre for Social Policy Studies, Department of Applied Social Sciences, the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. (co-edited with May Tam, Ku Hu-bin)

2005. “The Hidden Voice: The Sexual Politics of Hong Kong Male Sex Workers”. Hong Kong: Centre for Social Policy Studies, Department of Applied Social Sciences, the Hong KongPolytechnicUniversity.

2004. “Queer at Your Own Risk: Marginality, Community, and the Body Politics of Hong Kong Gay Men.” Sexualities, 7 (1): 5-30.

2003. “A Research Report on the Working Experiences of Hong Kong’s Female Sex Workers”. Hong Kong: Centre for Social Policy Studies, Department of Applied Social Sciences, the Hong KongPolytechnicUniversity and Zi Teng. (co-authored with Zi Teng)

2002. “Queering the Interview.” In Jaber F. Gubrium and James A. Holstein (eds.) Handbook of Interview Research: Context & Method. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Pp. 239-258. (co-authored with Plummer, K., and Mahoney, D.)

2002. “The Seduction of the Golden Boy: The Body Politics of Hong Kong Gay Men.” Body & Society, 8 (1): 29-48.