A Century of Development in Taiwan: From Colony to Modern State

Online event
Tuesday 14th March 2023 (14:30-16:00)

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Peter Chow 14 March 23

The University of Nottingham's Taiwan Studies Programme presents an on online panel talk with speakers Peter C.Y. Chow, City University of New York, Jasmine Yu-Hsing Chen, Utah State University, Doris T. Chang (張庭寧) Wichita State University, Yin-Chen Kang, Fo Guang University in Taiwan and Fang-Long Shih, London School of Economics and Political Science

A Century of Development in Taiwan: From Colony to Modern State

Tuesday 14 March 2023, 2.30pm to 4pm, BST, online only

This book is a comprehensive assessment of Taiwan’s development since the 1920’s. Inspired by Wilson’s “ self-determination” and the “ Taishō Democracy”, Taiwanese intellectuals initiated a historic enlightening movement of a Petition Movement for Establishment of a Taiwan Parliament and the founding of the Taiwan Cultural Association in October 1921. Since then, a century of development in Taiwan transformed itself from a Japanese colony to a modern state.

This book assesses Taiwan’s socio-political, economic, and cultural development since the 1920’s. Politically, Taiwan went through Japan’s colony and KMT authoritarian to a vibrant multi-party democracy with periodic election as the due process of government turnover. Economically, Taiwan transformed from an agrarian economy to a Newly Industrialized Country as a hub of high-tech products in the world. Socio-culturally, Taiwan became a multi-ethnic, multi-cultural advanced civic society with significant achievements in many social development indicators such as gender equality, educational and employment opportunity for female..rtc. Moreover, the book also has several chapters on the im-depth development of Taiwanese theater and the unique Taiwanese opera.

It is a joint product from a group of prominent scholars on Taiwan studies. To understand the evolving transformation of a colony to a progressive modern state in world development, this book is a must read one.It will prove invaluable to graduate and undergraduate students in Taiwanese history, literature, socio-cultural and political economy of development as well as Asian studies.

About the speakers 

Jasmine Yu-Hsing Chen is an Assistant Professor in the Department of World Languages and Cultures at Utah State University. She specializes in contemporary Chinese and Sinophone theater, film, media, visual culture, and literature. Her research examines how theatrical and cinematic works challenge government-promoted nationalism and how theater interacts with new media. She has published peer-reviewed articles in journals including Theatre, Dance and Performance Training, Comparative Media Arts Journal, Journal of the Oriental Society of Australia, Prism: Theory and Modern Chinese Literature, and Journal of Chinese Overseas. Currently, she is a member of the Board of Directors at the North American Taiwan Studies Association.

Dr. Doris T. Chang (張庭寧) is Associate Professor of Political Science at Wichita State University, U.S.A. She received her Ph.D. in East Asian History from the Ohio State University (2002). In 2009, she published a book titled Women’s Movements in Twentieth-Century Taiwan with the University of Illinois Press. It was the first book in English to bridge the historical divide between women’s movements in the Japanese Colonial Era (1895-1945) and the post-WWII Chinese Nationalist period. It examined the changes and continuities of Taiwanese feminist discourses and women’s movements from cross-cultural perspectives within the contexts of shifting geopolitical dynamics of Imperial Japan, Nationalist China, Taiwan, and the United States in the twentieth-century.

Dr. Chang also authored several refereed articles in international interdisciplinary journals. Among the women political leaders in postwar Taiwan she studied include Madame Chiang Kai-shek, Vice President Hsiu-lien Annette Lü, and Chen Chü—the first woman who joined the inner circle of postwar Taiwan’s Democracy Movement. Since 2018, Dr. Chang has served on the Associate Editorial Board of the International Journal of Taiwan Studies. In 2022, she authored a chapter on “The Transformation of Women’s Status in Taiwan, 1920-2020,” in a book titled A Century of Development in Taiwan: From Colony to Modern State, edited by Peter C .Y. Chow. Among the courses that Dr. Chang has taught in Political Science and International Relations include Asian Politics, Human Rights, Global Gender Politics, Global Challenges, and Introduction to International Relations.

Peter Chow is a professor of economics at the City University of New York. His field is in international economics and economic development. He has been teaching economic development for doctoral students at the CUNY Graduate Center and international economics for MA students at the City College since 1986. He was a visiting professor at the Academic Sinica, Nagoya National University, and National Taiwan University. He published more than 60 papers in referee articles and chapters of book and served as a contractual consultant at the World Bank. During 1998-2021, he served as the Executive Director of the American Association for Chinese Studies. He was frequently invited by several think tanks in Washington, D.C. and testified at the U.S.-China Economic and Security Commission and at the hearings at the joint session of USTR, Treasury and Commerce Departments. 

Dr. Yin-Chen Kang, born in 1979, getting BA and MA degree from National Taiwan University as well as PhD from SOAS, University of London, is currently an associate professor in Fo Guang University in Taiwan. Dr. Kang’ area of expertise is history of Taiwanese theatre by the mid-20th century, especially the Japanese colonial period. Dr. Kang was awarded Dissertation Fellowship for ROC Students Abroad by Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation for International Scholarly Exchange in 2012.

From 2017, Dr. Kang’ research projects are continually sponsored by Ministry of Science and Technology of Taiwan. The projects are “A Lost Golden Age──A Study of Japanese Commercial Theatre in Taiwan during the Japanese Colonial Period, 1912~1925,” “A Multimedia Theatre of the Early 20th Century──A Study of Rensageki (Chain Theatre) during the Japanese Colonial Period in Taiwan” and “A Pioneer of Taiwanese Modern Theatre: Japanese Shimpa Theatre in Taiwan during the Japanese Colonial Period, 1895~1920s.” Dr. Kang’s publications include volume articles: “The Rise and Fall of Cultural Theatre and New Theatre, from the 1920s to the 1960s,” in A Century of Development in Taiwan: From Colony to Modern Sate, edited by Peter C. Y. Chow, Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, 2022; “The Communication Route and Center of Traditional Chinese Theatre in Taiwan during the 17th and the 18th Centuries, Revealed by Theatrical Sources of Tayowan (Anping), Taiwan Prefectural City and Taiwan County,” in Nanying History, Society and Culture V: Early Tainan Region, edited by I-chang Liu and Ann Heylen, Tainan: Tainan City Government, 2019; as well as journal articles: “The Golden Age of Japanese Commercial Theatre in Taiwan during the Pre-war Period: A Case Study of 1913,” Taipei Theatre Journal 30 (2019); “Shingeki, Shinkageki, Bunkageki and Bunkakageki: The Forms and Themes of Modern Theatre in the Japanese Colonial Period, Revealed by Columbia Phonograph Recordings,” Taipei Theatre Journal 26 (2017) ; “The Birth of Taiwanese Broadcasting Schedule, Radio Column and Children’s Program between 1928~1932, a Case Study of ‘Radio Column’ and ‘Children’s Time’ on Taiwan Nichinichi Shinpo and Tainan Shinpo,” Journal of History, Arts and Taiwanese Humanities 11 (2016); “The Construction of the Study of Taiwanese Classical Theatre in Pre-War Time during the Japanese Colonial Period,” Taipei Theatre Journal 21 (2015).

Dr Fang-Long Shih is a specialist in the anthropology of Chinese religious, civic and political culture in Taiwan. Her writings, based on extensive fieldwork conducted in Taiwan since the 1990s, have been about the development of civil society in relation to colonialism, modernisation, nationalism, democratisation, and globalisation, often using examples from religion or culture as a case study. She has since 2003 joined the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), and works as Research Fellow of Taiwan Research Programme. In 2006, Dr Shih launched a continuing seminar series, ‘Taiwan in Comparative Perspective’, serving as chair, and in 2007 she established the journal Taiwan in Comparative Perspective, serving as editor, the first scholarly journal on Taiwan based outside Taiwan. Both contextualise processes of modernisation and globalisation through interdisciplinary studies of social scientific issues using Taiwan as a lever of comparison.

She has since 2009 served as Co-Director of the LSE Taiwan Research Programme, and also serves on the Board of Advisors, Global Taiwan Institute, Washington DC (2016–), the Board of Directors of the American Association for Chinese Studies (2015–). Her recent publications include: (2021) ‘Taiwan’s Culture Wars from “Re-China-ization” to “Taiwan-ization” and Beyond: President Tsai Ing-wen’s Cultural Policy in Long-Term Perspective’; (2015) ‘From Politics to Culture: Taiwanization Discourses and the Techno Nazha Performance.’ She has also undertaken international media interviews (e.g. by The BBC World TV News; New York Times), and theoretically informed opinion pieces relating to Taiwan (e.g. in Liberty Times; Thinking Taiwan; Up Media; Voicettank).  

This talk will be chaired and moderated by Dr. Chun-yi Lee, Director of Taiwan Studies Programme, University of Nottingham.

Taiwan Research Hub

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