Pro-Beijing Taiwanese politicians seek rapprochement with China

On April 29 James Soong (宋楚瑜), a Taiwanese politician and chairman of the People First Party (親民黨), told China's state-run news agency Xinhua that he supports the 1992 consensus and the one-China policy. Soong travelled to Hong Kong, Macau and mainland China to hold talks with local politicians. Pro-independence demonstration in Taipei, Taiwan "[B]oth sides … Continue reading Pro-Beijing Taiwanese politicians seek rapprochement with China

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Foxconn founder Kuo T’ai-ming says he’s running for president after sea goddess Mazu came to him in a dream

Founder and chairman of tech giant Foxconn (鴻海) Kuo T'ai-ming (郭台銘) announced on April 17 that he will run for president in Taiwan's 2020 elections, citing a dream in which Taiwan's popular sea goddess Mazu urged him to do more for the Taiwanese people. In the morning of April 17 Kuo visited the Daoist Ts'u-hui … Continue reading Foxconn founder Kuo T’ai-ming says he’s running for president after sea goddess Mazu came to him in a dream

Is democracy possible in China? Democratic thought in Chinese history – Sun Yat-sen, Lin Yutang, Carsun Chang

University professors from Jiao Tong University vote at a polling booth during the Republic of China legislative election in Shanghai, 1948 (via Wikimedia Commons) Since the founding of the People's Republic of China (PRC) in 1949, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has dominated public discourse through its control of the media and education. The CCP … Continue reading Is democracy possible in China? Democratic thought in Chinese history – Sun Yat-sen, Lin Yutang, Carsun Chang

Why Did Chiang Kai-shek Lose China? The Guomindang Regime And The Victory Of The Chinese Communist Party

"Reports of lost battles swirl in like falling snow," wrote Chiang Kai-shek at the end of 1948. "North China and the below-the-wall region are on the brink of collapse. I do not feel guilty. I tried my best" (quoted in: Jay Taylor,  The Generalissimo: Chiang Kai-shek and the Struggle for Modern China, 2009, p. 397). … Continue reading Why Did Chiang Kai-shek Lose China? The Guomindang Regime And The Victory Of The Chinese Communist Party

China and the May 4th Movement

"When the May Fourth Movement took place in 1919, I was only sixteen years old, a student at the Tianjin Women’s Normal College", wrote Deng Yingchao (邓颖超/ 鄧穎超; pinyin: Dèng Yǐngchāo) years after the events. "On May 4, 1919 students in Beijing held a demonstration asking the government to refuse to sign the Versailles Peace … Continue reading China and the May 4th Movement

China-Taiwan Tensions and the Guomindang’s Existential Crisis

In November 2014 the Guomindang (Chinese Nationalist Party) suffered a defeat in Taiwan's local elections, winning 40.7% of the votes and only 6 out of 22 local seats. The main opposition party, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), gained 47.5% of the votes. This setback led to the resignation en masse of the Guomindang executive cabinet. It … Continue reading China-Taiwan Tensions and the Guomindang’s Existential Crisis

China Ready to Use Military Force if Taiwan Declares Independence, says Chinese Admiral

"If the Democratic Progressive Party [Taiwan's ruling party] declares independence (台独), then we must go to war without hesitation," said Yin Zhuo, Rear Admiral of the Chinese Navy, in an interview on March 5. "If [they] declare independence, we will use military force to bring about unification, we must be very clear about that." In the interview, Yin … Continue reading China Ready to Use Military Force if Taiwan Declares Independence, says Chinese Admiral

The 228 Incident – The Uprising that Changed Taiwan’s History

228 Incident (The Terrible Inspection), circa 1947, by Li Jun   At 11:00 A.M. of February 27, 1947, Taipei City's Monopoly Bureau was informed that a boat carrying fifty boxes of illegal matches and cigarettes had arrived near the port of Danshui, north of Taipei.Matches and cigarettes were part of the system of government monopolies set up … Continue reading The 228 Incident – The Uprising that Changed Taiwan’s History

Civilized Taiwanese vs Uncivilized Mainlanders: Peng Mingmin and Anti-Chinese Rhetoric

In recent years it has become common both in Taiwan and in Hong Kong to portray mainland Chinese as backward and uncivilized. Some controversial episodes that were covered by the media have shaped this perception. Only to name a few, in 2014 a mainland couple allowed their child to urinate on a street in Hong … Continue reading Civilized Taiwanese vs Uncivilized Mainlanders: Peng Mingmin and Anti-Chinese Rhetoric

The Origins of Taiwanese Identity

The current discussion about Taiwanese identity is very much influenced by the ideological and political battle between those who think that the Taiwanese people constitute a separate nation, and those who think that the Taiwanese are simply a subgroup of the larger Chinese nation. Between 1945 and the end of the 1980s, when Taiwanese national … Continue reading The Origins of Taiwanese Identity