SOAS University of London

Centre of Taiwan Studies

Taiwan Indigenous Studies

Lecture Series on Taiwan's Indigenous Peoples

In the scholarship on contemporary Taiwan studies, some areas such as national identity, cross-Strait relations and democratisation have received extensive academic interest. However, one area that we feel needs greater academic attention concerns the study of Taiwan’s indigenous peoples. Though there has been high quality research on this subject, much of the literature has been historical, and issues related to modern Taiwan have been less well covered. For this reason, SOAS Centre of Taiwan Studies is currently conducting a research project funded by the Shung Ye Museum of Formosan Aborigines, with the aim of establishing a Taiwan indigenous teaching programme and producing an English language textbook that can inform wider audiences about Taiwan’s indigenous peoples.In order to achieve these two goals, we will be holding a series of lectures on Taiwan’s indigenous peoples for the forthcoming years. We will invite scholars from all over the world working in this domain to come visit Europe and to give a lecture on their recent research. A number of topics would be covered in this project. 

  1. The state of indigenous academic studies in Taiwan
  2. Political representation and voting behaviour of indigenous peoples
  3. Indigenous media in Taiwan
  4. Migration history of indigenous peoples
  5. Indigenous peoples and music/arts
  6. Labour issues and indigenous peoples
  7. Education issues related to indigenous peoples
  8. Indigenous rights social movements
  9. Indigenous peoples in Taiwan’s international relations
  10. Legal and constitutional issues related to Taiwan’s indigenous peoples
  11. Social problems facing Taiwan’s indigenous peoples
  12. Religion practices among Taiwan’s indigenous peoples
  13. Local politics in indigenous areas
  14. Modern literature and film
  15. National, ethnic and local identities among indigenous peoples
  16. The China factor
  17. The internet and social media
  18. Environmental issues concerning indigenous peoples

If you have any inquiry, please contact

CTS - IMG - Shung Ye Museum

The Shung Ye Museum of Formosan Aborigines

The Shung Ye Museum of Formosan Aborigines was founded in 1994 as a specialist museum for the display of artefacts pertaining to the Taiwan indigenous peoples. Originally established on the basis of donations by its founder and Chairman, Safe C.F. Lin, the Museum has over the years developed into an organisation that seeks to celebrate, through research and preservation, the uniqueness of the Taiwan indigenous cultures.

In 2010, Mr Niki Alsford, at the Centre of Taiwan Studies, began researching, on behalf of the Museum, the archival collections of the Presbyterian Church of England (PCE), housed in the vaults of the School of Oriental and African Studies’ library. This collection is the largest in the UK and contains some of the earliest written histories of the Taiwan indigenous peoples in the English language. Aside from the written documentary and visual evidence of culture, pre-Japanese ethnography, language, and architecture of the people, it also contains some of the earliest and rarest photographic records of the Presbyterian Mission and its activities in Taiwan from the 1860s through to the early 1940s.