SOAS University of London

Centre of Taiwan Studies

SOAS CTS Summer School 2019 PhD Presentations

Adrian Chiu, Wu Yi-Cheng, Chen Jing-han, Jooyoung Oh, Martin Boyle

Date: 18 June 2019Time: 9:30 AM

Finishes: 18 June 2019Time: 12:00 PM

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings Room: 4426

Type of Event: Summer School

PhD Presentations Seminar ( SOAS Centre of Taiwan Studies Summer School Day 2: Tuesday 18th June 2019 09:00-12:30) Open to Everyone

As part of the Summer School, we have scheduled a PhD-focused research seminar open for all to attend. The session offers PhD students and candidates the opportunity to share their research, get feedback and gain valuable experience in presenting in an academic environment.

PhD Presentations Seminar Programme

Please note, this agenda may be subject to last minute changes

Venue: 4426

Time Speaker Title
09:30-10:00 Adrian Chiu “Transnational friendship and China Factor: The Case of Hong Kong-Taiwan party interactions”
10:00-10:30 Wu Yi-Cheng “Passage to Rites/Rights: Rethinking Indigenous Drinking Practice in Taiwan”
10:30-11:00 Chen Jing-han “How do Overseas Taiwanese frame their legal status when their Taiwanese identity is denied?”
11:00-11:30 Jooyoung Oh “I rather stay here as "Guest": research on Hakka Identity in Taiwan
11:30-12:00 Martin Boyle “Huadu: Accounting for Taiwan's Maintenance of its de facto Independence”

Adrian Chiu (MPhil/ PhD, SOAS)
“Transnational friendship and China Factor: The Case of Hong Kong-Taiwan party interactions”

Hong Kong-Taiwan interactions had not been a popular academic topic to study, despite both entities being contentious territories of the PRC. But that began to change in recent years thanks to the two large-scale social movements in the two societies sharing in their anti-Beijing sentiments. Nevertheless while comparative studies of the two movements became prevalent, the analysis of the interactions between the two remains under-theorized. This project attempts to contribute to this effort through studying the interactions between political parties of Hong Kong and Taiwan in a longer timeframe since 1997. The study of transnational relations since the 1970s represents the beginning of a new area of study in non-state actors within the discipline of IR that has been dominated in theorizing interstate relations. The current literature of transnational party interactions has mainly focused on the multilateral party organizations in the European context, while less attention has been paid to the efforts of parties in non-democracies to go abroad interacting with other parties, especially in non-Western context. Based on a constructivist ontology of the state, this project aims to analyze party interactions between Hong Kong and Taiwan through the framework of transnational friendship. By analyzing media reports and interviewing party elites and activists from both sides of the relations, this project plans to explore how and why established political parties have engaged in bilateral interactions and what has changed since 1997. In particular, it also plans to explore how the different perception of China of various parties across the political spectrum has shaped their transnational interactions.

Wu Yi-Cheng (Attending Psychiatrist, Hsinchu Mackay Memorial Hospital/ PhD Candidate, Anthropology, Durham University)
“Passage to rites/rights: Indigenous Drinking Practice in Taiwan”

This presentation aims to analyse the meaning of indigenous people’s drinking practice in Taiwan. Indigenous people have been found to have a high prevalence of drinking while the Taiwan government has launched several health interventions that target such a ‘problem’ but always in vain. My study explores the meanings of Taiwanese indigenous people’s drinking practice and finds that there is a contradiction between problematisation of alcohol use and the indigenous people’s moral world since indigenous people are building their identities and fighting their rights through drinking practice which reflects their contemporary settler-colonial situation.
The research uses a 12-months ethnographic study in Taiwan to highlight the conundrums of current health interventions and the ever changing drinking cultures, which have been reshaped and created under their life situations, from the previous diaspora to the contemporary everyday life of sufferings. Drinking becomes a ‘passage to rites/rights’ that represents the struggling in search of traditional values which have been abandoned under colonisation and the rights that have been deprived today. Individualised pathologising drinking as a mental ‘problem’ is paradoxical since drinking reveals the symbolic meaning of the structural violence, while their ever-reproducing drinking cultures show a gesture of self-fashioning as resistance to the marginalisation and oppression under the state’s governing, including health intervention itself.

Chen Jing Han (PhD, University of Edinburgh)
How do Overseas Taiwanese frame their legal status when their Taiwanese identity is denied?”

This work explores the crucial question: how do overseas Taiwanese frame their legal status when their Taiwanese identity is denied? The presentation will illustrate citizenship issues faced by overseas Taiwanese: including, in extreme cases, the possibility of becoming stateless persons. For years, the statehood of Taiwan has been a contested issue. This is mainly due to its legal framework being that of the Republic of China (ROC), which constitutionally claims sovereignty over present-day mainland China – which in turn makes Taiwan’s international relations, especially with the People’s Republic of China, more contentious. The Taiwanese legal framework creates a nationality for Taiwanese citizens in which they claim themselves to be citizens of the ROC. Since the international community considers the ROC to be the former official regime of China, though, complications may ensue when Taiwanese go abroad. One such complication occurs when overseas Taiwanese, in various countries, are labeled as Chinese.

Taiwanese who do not identify with this label use different framings for their nationality, in order to maintain their Taiwanese identity: even to the point of applying a stateless status to themselves, in order to eschew a Chinese identity. This demonstrates that statelessness can become a strategy to ensure that, for these Taiwanese, their citizenship status remains unresolved in these states, though these states see Taiwanese as Chinese in their legal systems. This presentation will examine the legal framework of Taiwanese citizenship, and focus on the legal framing of statelessness by overseas Taiwanese, highlighting these complex issues of identity.

Organiser: SOAS Centre of Taiwan Studies

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