Transadvertising of Western pharmaceutical products in The Chinese Mail (1895–1910)

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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  • Bo Li


Original languageEnglish
Journal / PublicationPerspectives: Studies in Translation Theory and Practice
Online published2 Mar 2021
Publication statusOnline published - 2 Mar 2021


This study investigates how English advertisements for Western pharmaceutical products were appropriated to meet the expectations of local consumers in The Chinese Mail, one of the major Chinese newspapers in Hong Kong, between 1895 and 1910. The Chinese advertisements for these foreign medical products are compared to their English counterparts, and the adaptation of brand names and advertising content to the discourse of Traditional Chinese Medicine is analysed. This study reveals that the Western pharmaceutical products marketed in Hong Kong were closely related to the bubonic plague of 1894 and the prostitution industry and that the juxtaposition of Western medicine and traditional Chinese medicine discourses in Chinese advertising highlights the discrepancy between these two medical discourses.

Research Area(s)

  • Transadvertising, Western pharmaceutical products, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), translation, The Chinese Mail