SOAS University of London

Centre of Taiwan Studies

Book Launch on Literary Representations of “Mainlanders” in Taiwan Becoming Sinophone

Phyllis Yu-Ting Huang

Date: 1 June 2022Time: 11:00 AM

Finishes: 1 June 2022Time: 12:30 PM

Venue: Virtual Event

Type of Event: Book Launch

This session will be held using Microsoft Teams.
*Please be aware that this session follows British Summer Time (BST).


This book examines literary representations of mainlander identity articulated by Taiwan’s second-generation mainlander writers, who share the common feature of emotional ambivalence between Taiwan and China.

Closely analyzing literary narratives of Chinese civil war migrants and their descendants in Taiwan, a group referred to as "mainlanders" (waishengren), this book demonstrates that these Chinese migrants’ ideas of "China" and "Chineseness" have adapted through time with their gradual settlement in the host land. Drawing upon theories of Sinophone Studies and memory studies, this book argues that during the three decades in which Taiwan moved away from the Kuomintang’s authoritarian rule to a democratic society, mainlander identity was narrated as a transformation from a diasporic Chinese identity to a more fluid and elusive Sinophone identity. Characterized by the features of cultural hybridity and emotional in-betweenness, mainlander identity in the eight works explored contests the existing Sinocentric discourse of Chineseness.

An important contribution to the current research on Taiwan’s identity politics, this book will be of interest to academics in the field of Taiwan studies, Sinophone studies, Chinese migration, and Taiwanese literature as well as Chinese literature in general.

Phyllis Book

Speaker's Bio

Phyllis Yu-Ting Huang

Phyllis Yu-Ting Huang received her PhD in Chinese Studies from Monash University, Australia. She teaches Taiwan-related topics at Asia Institute, the University of Melbourne. She is also Secretary of Australasian Taiwan Studies Association (ATSA). Her studies focus on literary and media representations of Chinese Civil War migrants in Taiwan and cross-Strait relationships. She has published articles in International Journal of Taiwan Studies, Archiv Orientálni, and Journal of Taiwan Literary Studies (Taiwan wenxue yanjiu xuebao).

Organiser: Centre of Taiwan Studies

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