SOAS University of London

Centre of Taiwan Studies

Book Launch: Positioning Taiwan in a Global Context

Dr. Chang Bi-yu, Dr. Lin Pei-yin & Dr. Adina Zemanek

Date: 19 June 2019Time: 1:30 PM

Finishes: 19 June 2019Time: 3:30 PM

Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings Room: KLT

Type of Event: Summer School


As this event is part of our SOAS Centre of Taiwan Studies Summer School, we kindly ask that you register to attend


Contextualising Taiwan in a Global Context Book Cover

This book examines the various aspects of modern Taiwanese culture through the prism of global cultural interactions.  Instead of considering Taiwan a product of transience, displacement, or crossing, it highlights Taiwan’s subjectivity, viewing the island’s development as a site of a global cultural circuit that epitomizes both the resistance and negotiation in the process of cultural flows, feedback loops, and global imperialism. The fourteen chapters by scholars from and outside of Taiwan altogether investigate the multi-layered and multidirectional interplays between the island and the outside world and explore the impact of complex cultural encounters on the construction, writing and rewriting of Taiwan in a global context. The topics covered range from Taiwanese literature and cinema, tourism, cultural geography, colonial history, indigenous studies, food culture, and folk religion, with reference points drawn from Japan, China, Hong Kong, the Philippines, and the West (especially the U.S.). This volume’s focus on the continuous cross-cultural interplays affords readers a deeper understanding of identity politics, and a better insight into the fluidity, changeability, and constructionist nature of culture.

PART I: Repositioning Taiwan

  1. Positioning ‘Taiwanese literature’ to the world: Taiwan as represented and perceived in English translation
    PEI-YIN LIN (Hong Kong University)
  2. Translating Taiwan southward
    ADAM LIFSHEY (Georgetown University)
  3. It all starts in Hualien: Pangcah Woman ; Rose, Rose, I Love You ; and The Man with the Compound Eyes
    BERT SCRUGGS (University of California, Irvine)
  4. The making of Taiwanese martial arts fi ction: The case of Gu Long
  5. Indigenizing queer fiction and queer theories: A study on Chi Ta-wei’s sci-fi novels
    GWENNAËL GAFFRIC (Université Jean Moulin Lyon 3)

PART II Cultural flows and becoming

  1. From ‘Free China’ to sunny paradise: The worlding process in the magazine Tourism in Taiwan (1966–1974)
  2. The gourmet paradise: The gustatory gaze toward Taiwan in Japanese tourist media (1964–present)
    LILLIAN TSAY (Brown University)
  3. Savage world, immortal island: The colonial gaze and colonial taste of Penglai rice
    SHAO-LI LU (National Taiwan University)
  4. Let’s talk about love: Hong Kong’s geopolitical narratives of emotion and stories of lifestyle migration in Taiwan
    TSUNG-YI MICHELLE HUANG (National Taiwan University)
  5. Getting to know Taiwan: Borrowed gaze, direct involvement and everyday life
    ADINA ZEMANEK (University of Central Lancashire)

PART III:  The production and contestation of indigeneity

  1. Localizing the Japanese manga system and making folk religion manga-esque: Wei Tsung-cheng’s Ming Zhan-lu:Final Destiny of the Formosan Gods
    TERI SILVIO (Academia Sinica, Taiwan)
  2. Charting the transnational within the national: The case of contemporary Taiwan popular cinema
    TING-YING LIN (Taipei National University of the Arts)
  3. Countervisions: Exotic voyages in the work of Hou Hsiaohsien and Edward Yang
    CARSTEN STORM (Technische Universität Dresden)
  4. Taiwan’s indigenous peoples and cinema: From colonial mascot to Fourth Cinema?
    CHRIS BERRY (King’s College London)

Speaker Biographies

Bi-yu Profile

Dr Bi-yu Chang is Deputy Director of the Centre of Taiwan Studies and Senior Teaching Fellow at SOAS, University of London. Her research interests include cultural politics, nation-building, cultural identity, and theatre. In recent years, her works have been concerned with place identity, spatial construction, and cartographic representation. Since 2016, she has been researching the politics of and the exoticization in Taiwan’s tourism, unpicking the intricate relationship between identity, place, and power on a global scale. She is co-editor of /and contributor to a number of books, including recently published Positioning Taiwan in a Global Context: Being and Becoming (2019); Connecting Taiwan: Participation – Integration – Impacts (2018); 交界與游移:跨文史的文化傳譯與知識生產 (2017); Imaging and Imagining Taiwan: Identity representation and cultural politics (2012), and is the author of Place, Identity, and National Imagination in Post-war Taiwan (Routledge, 2015).

Lin Pei-yin Profile

Dr Lin Pei-yin is Associate Professor in the School of Chinese, University of Hong Kong. Prior to teaching in Hong Kong, she was Lecturer in the Department of East Asian Studies, Cambridge, an assistant professor in the department of Chinese Studies of the National University of Singapore, and a part-time teacher and post-doctorate research fellow in modern Chinese literature at SOAS, University of London. She was a Harvard Yenching Visiting Scholar in 2015-2016. She has published widely on modern Chinese literature, with a focus on Taiwan. Her recent publications include Colonial Taiwan: Negotiating Identities and Modernity through Literature (Brill, 2017) and two co-edited volumes: East Asian Transwar Popular Culture: Literature and Film from Taiwan and Korea(Palgrave Macmillan, 2019) and Positioning Taiwan in a Global Context: Being and Becoming (Routledge, 2019). She is currently working on two projects--one is about popular literature from Taiwan under Japanese rule, and the other is on Taiwan's nativisit fiction since the 1990s. 

Adine Profile

Dr Adina Zemanek works as Lecturer in Asia Pacific Studies at the University of Lancashire. Her PhD dissertation (cultural anthropology, Jagiellonian University) discussed images of womanhood in PRC editions of international fashion magazines. Her current research interests include: nation branding in Taiwan; the discoursive construction of Taiwanese identity (issues related to history and memory, generations, ethnicity) in tourist souvenirs and graphic narratives. She is also Board Member of the European Association of Taiwan Studies, and has published in journals such as China Perspectives, Culture, Theory and Critique, Archiv orientální.

Organiser: SOAS Centre of Taiwan Studies

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