Taiwan Studies in Europe

Written by Ming-Yeh T. Rawnsley. The 13th EATS Annual Conference took place in Prague, 30 March–1 April 2016. The conference was a collaboration between the EATS Board and the local organiser, the Oriental Institute of the Academy of Sciences, Czech Republic. The main theme of the conference was “Powerful and Powerless”. The organisers chose this theme …

Taiwan in Japan’s historical narrative

Written by Alex Calvo. The coming 70th anniversary of the end of the Second World War is not abating the debate over Japan’s historical responsibility and contemporary views of the conflict. To the contrary. Neither Beijing nor Seoul seem interested in renouncing this key aspect of their domestic and international narratives, while speculation continues about the …

Cross-Strait interdependence: Who needs whom?

Written by Michael Reilly. Alastair Campbell famously once said that Tony Blair’s government didn’t “do God”. In similar vein, Chinese foreign policy makers don’t “do subtlety”. I remember being physically threatened by a senior Chinese diplomat at an international conference; although I think he was half-joking. So in the aftermath of Taiwan’s Autumn 2014 local …

Taiwan: Between the pivot and a hard place

Written by J. Michael Cole. More than three years have elapsed since then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton posited the idea of a U.S. “pivot,” or “rebalancing,” to Asia in her article for Foreign Policy magazine. To this day, nobody seems to have a clear idea how to define the nature and shape of the endeavor in …

Taiwan’s Pivotal Place in Asia’s Territorial Dispute Chessboard

Written by Alex Calvo. A look at the Indian-Pacific Ocean Region reveals a landscape full of territorial disputes, with more than a few featuring regular incidents and a clear risk of escalation. Right in the middle of these disputes stands Taiwan, in more than one way. First of all, geographically, the Island is right between …

Debunking the Myths About Taiwan’s Sunflower Movement

Written by J. Michael Cole. In the absence of knowledge, fall back on conspiracies. This is what many foreign analysts and the Taiwanese government have done as they try to explain — and more importantly deal with — the activists’ occupation of the Legislative Yuan (LY), which is now on its eighteenth day. According to …

Taiwan’s Youth: Blamed if you don’t, blamed if you do

Written by Michal Thim. It seems that Taiwan has grown accustomed to frequent protests targeting a broad range of issues, starting with land grabbing disputes, ending with increasingly unpopular cross-Strait policy of current KMT administration led by deeply unpopular President Ma. Yet, the decision by an alliance of students and civil society groups to take over …

Going Nuclear is Not an Option

Written by J. Michael Cole One can almost always anticipate the response whenever John J. Mearsheimer, the famous political scientist from the University of Chicago, says or writes anything about China and the fate of Taiwan. Sure enough, a recent commentary by Mearsheimer in the National Interest, gloomily titled “Say Goodbye to Taiwan,” has attracted …

Taiwan-Australia Relations: Humming Along

Written by Bruce Jacobs. Taiwan’s foreign relations with the major nations of the world have essentially normalized. Even though these nations all have official “one China” policies, in fact they have “one China, one Taiwan” policies with substantial “representative offices” (i.e. embassies) in Taipei while Taiwan has substantial offices in their own countries. The overseas …

The Shaw Brothers and the Taiwan Film Industry

Written by Ming-Yeh Rawnsley. Movie mogul Run Run Shaw (邵逸夫) passed away on 7 January 2014. Many observers have commented on the Shaw Brothers’ empire (邵氏電影公司) and its contribution to Hong Kong cinema. However I would like to add to the discussi