Taiwan, Asia’s bastion of free speech

Source: NYT (3/14/18)
Asia’s Bastion of Free Speech? Move Aside, Hong Kong, It’s Taiwan Now.
查看简体中文版  | 查看繁體中文版
By CHRIS HORTON and AUSTIN RAMZY

A view of Taipei, the capital of Taiwan, which has emerged as one of Asia’s most vibrant democracies, drawing the political dissidents and rights groups that once naturally gravitated to Hong Kong. CreditLam Yik Fei for The New York Times

TAIPEI, Taiwan — For decades under British rule and after its handover to China, Hong Kong was a bastion of free speech in the Chinese-speaking world. International media and rights groups established their headquarters there, and it served as a haven for political fugitives, from Tiananmen student leaders to Edward Snowden.

In recent years, however, as Beijing has tightened its grip on the former colony, Hong Kong has been increasingly supplanted by Taiwan, a self-governing island that has emerged as one of Asia’s most vibrant democracies. Taiwan now draws the sorts of dissidents, rights groups and events that once naturally gravitated to Hong Kong. Continue reading

Taiwan Studies Workshop–cfp reminder

CALL FOR PAPERS: TAIWAN STUDIES WORKSHOP
sponsored by Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation for International Scholarly Exchange and Harvard University
DATE: October 12-13, 2018
PLACE: University of California, Davis
ELIGIBILITY: Assistant professors, PhD students, and independent scholars in North America and Europe
THEME:“Ecologizing Taiwan: Nature, Society, Culture”

Inspired by Felix Guattari’s Three Ecologies, this workshop extends the definition of ecology to encompass social relations and human subjectivity, as well as environmental concerns. With Taiwan as the focus either in itself or within a comparative framework, papers are invited to examine the human, non-human, and post-human Sinosphere as well as the earth. Other topics that study Taiwan from humanistic or social scientific perspectives are welcome too. 

FUNDING: Funding for economy-class airfares and hotel accommodations for two nights will be provided for speakers.

SUBMISSION DEADLINE: May 1, 2018. Please send the title of the paper and an abstract of 100-120 words to: David Der-wei Wang at dwang@fas.harvard.edu and Michelle Yeh at mmyeh@ucdavis.edu.

INVITATIONS will be sent out by May 31, 2018.

Man Booker reverses decision on Wu Ming-Yi

Source: The Guardian (4/4/18)
Man Booker prize reverses nationality decision on Taiwanese author
The literary prize announces that it will no longer list authors by nationality, but by country or territory, after drawing criticism when it bowed to pressure from China
By Alison Flood

Proudly Taiwanese … Wu Ming-Yi, pictured in Taipei in 2016.

Proudly Taiwanese … Wu Ming-Yi, pictured in Taipei in 2016. Photograph: Wu Ming-Yi/EPA

The Man Booker International prize has backed away from its decision to change a Taiwanese author’s nationality to “Taiwan, China” after it was criticised for bowing to pressure from Beijing.

Author Wu Ming-Yi, who has been longlisted for his novel The Stolen Bicycle, was originally described by award organisers as a writer from Taiwan, when his nomination was announced in March. Following a complaint from the Chinese embassy in London last week, his nationality was changed on the prize’s website to “Taiwan, China”.

Beijing maintains that the self-governed island is part of China, and has recently ramped up pressure on foreign companies that describe Taiwan as a country, with German airline Lufthansa and British Airways dropping Taiwan from their lists of countries.

The switch was noted by Wu on his Facebook page, where he said it was “not my personal position on this issue”. The cause was also taken up by Taiwan’s ministry of culture, which stated that Taiwan was “a sovereign state that participates in international affairs with respect and fairness”, and called on the Booker Prize Foundation not to “bow to external influence and … respect authors and their home countries”.

As the Man Booker International prize’s Facebook page was flooded with one-star reviews and petitions were launched calling on it to reverse its decision and identify Wu’s country as Taiwan, the organisers announced on Wednesday morning that “following correspondence with stakeholders and additional guidance on the appropriate terminology from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office”, in the future it would list the “country/territory” of authors up for the prize, rather than their nationalities. Wu will again be listed as “Taiwan”.

“The prize is not about defining nationality; all global citizens are eligible, provided they are published in translation in the UK,” said the organisers in a statement.

A spokesperson for the prize added: “It is the country/territory of origin rather than nationality. Taiwan is officially designated a territory rather than a country by the FCO.”

The Chinese embassy, which initially complained to the Foundation about how it had identified Wu, said in a statement: “China’s position on the Taiwan issue is consistent and clear. There is only one China in the world, and Taiwan is an inseparable part of China. This is the universal consensus of the international community. China opposes any words or deeds that violate the one-China principle and are contrary to the international consensus.”

Man Booker bows to pressure

Source: The Telegraph (3/30/18)
Fury as Man Booker bows to pressure to list Taiwan as Chinese province
By Nicola Smith and Neil Conner

Wu Ming-Yi, with the cover of his book The Stolen Bicycle, which has been longlisted for the Man Booker International Prize 2018 CREDIT: MAN BOOKER PRIZE

One of the world’s most prestigious literary prizes has been dragged into a diplomatic spat between China and Taiwan after it caved in to pressure from Beijing to change the nationality of a Taiwanese nominee on its website.

The Man Booker International Prize said on Friday that it had changed the nationality of Professor Wu Ming-yi, 46, one of 13 authors on the 2018 longlist, from “Taiwan” to “Taiwan, China” after it had received a complaint from the Chinese embassy in London. Continue reading

Taipei lashes out over banning of ‘pro-independence’ actor

Source: SCMP (3/29/18)
Taipei lashes out at Beijing after film with ‘pro-independence’ actor banned
Mainland accused of inconsistency ‘in its words and deeds’ after Missing Johnny screenings barred over claims about its star Lawrence Ko
By Lawrence Chung

Lawrence Ko stars in Missing Johnny, which follows the stories of three young people living in Taipei. Photo: Handout

Taipei has accused Beijing of inconsistency between what it says and does after a Taiwanese film was banned on the mainland amid claims its lead actor Lawrence Ko supports independence for the island.

It comes a month after Beijing introduced a raft of preferential policies for Taiwanese that include more access to the lucrative mainland market for their film, television and books. Continue reading

Taiwan Studies Workshop–cfp

CALL FOR PAPERS: TAIWAN STUDIES WORKSHOP
sponsored by Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation for International Scholarly Exchange
Harvard University
DATE: October 12-13, 2018
PLACE:  University of California, Davis
ELIGIBILITY: Assistant professors, PhD students, and independent scholars in North America and Europe
THEME: “Ecologizing Taiwan: Nature, Society, Culture”

Inspired by Felix Guattari’s Three Ecologies, this workshop extends the definition of ecology to encompass social relations and human subjectivity, as well as environmental concerns. With Taiwan as the focus either in itself or within a comparative framework, papers are invited to examine the human, non-human, and post-human Sinosphere as well as the earth. Other topics that study Taiwan from humanistic or social scientific perspectives are welcome too. 

FUNDING: Funding for economy-class airfares and hotel accommodations for two nights will be provided for speakers.

SUBMISSION DEADLINE: May 1, 2018. Please send the title of the paper and an abstract of 100-120 words to: David Der-wei Wang at dwang@fas.harvard.edu and Michelle Yeh at mmyeh@ucdavis.edu.

INVITATIONS will be sent out by May 31, 2018.

The Stolen Bicycle nominated for Man Booker

Source: Taipei Times (3/14/18)
‘The Stolen Bicycle’ to compete with 12 books for prestigious Man Booker prize
Staff Writer, with CNA

A copy of The Stolen Bicycle by Wu Ming-yi, published in Australia by Text Publishing, is pictured in a publicity photograph. Photo from Grayhawk Agency’s Facebook page

The Stolen Bicycle (單車失竊記), a novel written by Taiwanese author Wu Ming-yi (吳明益) and translated into English by Darryl Sterk, has been selected to contend for the prestigious Man Booker International Prize.

The novel is about a writer who embarks on a quest in search of his missing father’s stolen bicycle.

It was included on a list of 13 novels revealed on Monday by the UK-based Booker Prize Foundation, the organizer of the prize, which rewards the finest work in translated fiction from around the world that is published in the UK and available in English.

This is the first time a work by a Taiwanese writer has been included on the list.

“I’m honored to be listed among them, and the nationality [was listed] as ‘Taiwan,’” Wu said in a Facebook post, expressing his appreciation to the book’s translator, publisher and readers.

The judges considered 108 books this year, the foundation said. Continue reading

Animal Writing in Taiwan Literature

Taiwan Literature: English Translation Series, Issue Number 41: Special Issue on “Animal Writing in Taiwan Literature” is available now. See the link for more information. Please also see the table of contents below.

http://www.press.ntu.edu.tw/index.php?act=book&refer=ntup_book00997

Taiwan Literature: English Translation Series
Issue Number 41, January, 2018
ISBN: 978-986-350-262-3
GPN: 1010700001

Publisher: US-Taiwan Literature Foundation & National Taiwan University Press

台灣文學英譯叢刊(No. 41): 台灣文學的動物書寫專輯

Kuo-ch’ing Tu (杜國清)、 Terence Russell(羅德仁) 編
Chia-ju Chang (張嘉如), Guest-Editor (客座編輯)

Table of Contents:

Foreword to the Special Issue on Animal Writing in Taiwan Literature/Kuo-ch’ing Tu
「台灣文學的動物書寫專輯」卷頭語/杜國清 Continue reading

International Journal of Taiwan Studies 1.1

The inaugural issue of International Journal of Taiwan Studies is now available! Below, please find the table of contents and see the link for more information:

International Journal of Taiwan Studies
Volume 1, Issue 1, 2018
ISSN: 2468-8797
E-ISSN: 2468-8800

http://booksandjournals.brillonline.com/content/journals/24688800/1/1

AVAILABLE WITH FREE ACCESS UNTIL DECEMBER 31, 2019

“Editorial,” by Ming-yeh T. Rawnsley, pp.: 1–3

“Introduction: The State of the Field of Taiwan Studies,” by Hsin-Huang Michael Hsiao and Dafydd Fell, pp.: 5–10 Continue reading

Ecologizing Taiwan–cfp

Ecologizing Taiwan: Nature, Society, Culture–Call for Papers
Co-edited by David Wang and Andrea Bachner

The International Journal of Taiwan Studies, cosponsored by the European Association of Taiwan Studies and Academia Sinica, is a principal outlet for the dissemination of cutting-edge research on Taiwan. We are currently inviting submissions for a special issue titled Ecologizing Taiwan: Nature, Society, Culture.

This special issue proposes Taiwan as a point of departure to situate ecological thought and think beyond contemporary bio- and eco-politics. Extending the definition of ecology to encompass social relations and human subjectivity as well as environmental concerns, we propose to put all we do, think, and feel about Taiwan in the context of the whole to which we belong: the human, nonhuman, and post-human Sinosphere as well as the earth. Continue reading

Hou Family Fellowship in Taiwan Studies

2018-19 Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies Hou Family Fellowship in Taiwan Studies

The Fairbank Center for Chinese Studies at Harvard University is pleased to announce the 2018-19 competition for the Hou Family Fellowship in Taiwan Studies. The fellowship will be for a period of three to twelve months from August 1, 2018 to July 31, 2019, with residency at Harvard University. One candidate who is a student at, recently graduated from, or teaching/researching at a North American institution and one from a Taiwanese institution will be accepted. Please note that the Fairbank Center is only accepting applications from North America-based scholars. A separate search committee in Taiwan will review local applications.

Applications are welcome from candidates with advanced standing in their Ph.D. programs or recent Ph.D.s (within five years at the start of the fellowship) in a relevant discipline of the humanities or social sciences focusing on Taiwan.

A strong working knowledge of English and Chinese and/or Taiwanese is required. Harvard University doctoral degree candidates and recipients are not eligible for this fellowship.

Total stipend for one year: $25,000, plus $3,000 for research support.

For program and application details, please see:

http://fairbank.fas.harvard.edu/grants/non-harvard-affiliates/#hou-family-fellowship-for-taiwan-studies

Application deadline: March 14, 2018

Posted: Nick Drake <ndrake@fas.harvard.edu>

Taiwan’s lost commercial cinema–cfp

CFP: Taiwan’s Lost Commercial Cinema: Recovered and Restored

Did you know regular filmmaking on Taiwan only started in the 1950s? With a Taiwanese-language film industry? Between then and the 1970s, 1000+ Taiwanese-language features were made. However, the budgets were miniscule, the companies short-lived, and there was no archive. They were quickly forgotten, and only 200+ survive. However, with the establishment of the Chinese Taipei Film Archive in 1979 and the end of martial law in 1987, Taiwanese-language cinema of the 1950s–1970s, once seen as a disposable entertainment, is now being revalued as an art form and window on old Taiwan, and new scholarship is revealing more complex dimensions of the phenomenon.

We are pleased to announce that Journal of Chinese Cinemas has agreed to our proposal to submit a dossier of articles for consideration as a special section or issue of the journal. To be considered for inclusion, please submit your 200-300 word abstract to us (chris.berry@kcl.ac.uk and mytrawnsley@gmail.com) by 31 January 2018. If accepted, the deadline for submission of the full draft essay will be 30 April 2018, and we will be submitting the dossier to Journal of Chinese Cinemas during the summer of 2018.

Chris Berry and Ming-Yeh Rawnsley

Professor Chris Berry
Dept. of Film Studies
King’s College London
Strand, London
WC2R 2LS
UK
44-(0)207-848-1158

Taiwanese cinema year in review

Source: Taipei Times (12/28/17)
Year in Review: Taiwanese Cinema
By Han Cheung  /  Staff reporter

Blue Lan, left, and Chu Ko Liang play a father and son in Hanky Panky. Chu died in May at the age of 70. Photo courtesy of Hualien Media

Suffering through a number of terrible local movies throughout the year makes the good ones truly worth it. Three favorites in particular come to mind — but first, let’s pay tribute to Chu Ko Liang (豬哥亮), the legendary and often crass Taiwanese entertainer who died at 70 years old in May.

Liang’s sixth-straight and unfortunately his final Lunar New Year blockbuster Hanky Panky (大釣哥) continues his over-the-top act with plenty of melodrama and his trademark bathroom humor, although he does rein in the weirdness at times for some surprisngly emotional scenes. The resulting product is an unspectacular yet solid Liang-style comedy with a decent storyline and a surprising amount of chuckles, which was exactly what people are looking for in a holiday blockbuster. Liang should not be remembered as a fool just because of his bumbling on-screen persona. There’s a reason he was been able to stay relevant despite pulling the same old tricks decade after decade. He knew how to tell a story, and most importantly, he knew how to make fun of himself — which is where most other Taiwanese screwball comedies fall short. Continue reading

Hakka made an official language in Taiwan

Source: Taipei Times (12/30/17)
Hakka made an official language
Townships in which half the people are Hakka are to make Hakka the primary language, while some civil servants are to take a language test
By Cheng Hung-ta and Jake Chung  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Hakka has been made an official national language after the Legislative Yuan yesterday passed amendments to the Hakka Basic Act (客家基本法).

According to the amendment, townships in which Hakka people make up at least one-third of the population are to be designated key developmental areas for Hakka culture by the Hakka Affairs Council, and Hakka is to be used as one of the main languages for communication.

Such areas should strive to bolster the teaching and speaking of Hakka, as well as the preservation of Hakka culture and related industries, the amendment said. Continue reading

Yu Guangzhong dies at age 90 (1)

Source: Taipei Times (12/15/17)
Poet Yu Kwang-chung, 90, dies in Kaohsiung
FAREWELL: Born in China in 1928, Yu Kwang-chung began writing in 1949. He migrated to Taiwan in 1950 and in the same year published poems, critical essays and translations
By Huang Hsu-lei and Jonathan Chin  /  Staff reporters, with CNA

Poet Yu Kwang-chung, left, kisses his wife, Fan Wo-tsun, at an event to celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary in Kaohsiung last year. Photo courtesy of National Sun Yat-sen University

Noted poet and essayist Yu Kwang-chung (余光中) yesterday died from complications from pneumonia at age 90, Kaohsiung Medical University Chung-ho Memorial Hospital said.

Yu was hospitalized last week after a suspected mini-stroke, before being transferred to the intensive care unit because of pneumonia, the hospital said, adding that detailed information has been withheld out of respect for Yu’s family.

Yu had been in poor health since last year, when he was twice hospitalized, first for an intestinal complaint and then a fall. Continue reading