Culture and Political Change in Contemporary Taiwan

CIW Conference


Seminar Room A, China in the World Building (188), Fellows Lane, ANU


Saturday, 19 May, 2018 - 09:30 to Sunday, 20 May, 2018 - 19:15

Students’ mass protest during 2014’s Sunflower student movement in Taiwan

Registration essential

The official end of Martial Law in 1987 marked a significant moment in Taiwan’s process of democratization and the consequent period of rapid change. Now, thirty years later, the 2016 transition in government from the Kuomintang (KMT) to the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) can also be understood as signifying a transformation in social, political and cultural relationships. In the wake of sustained protests against the KMT over issues such as democratic process, economic development and political sovereignty, the Tsai Ing-wen led DPP achieved an unprecedented electoral margin to take office. Tsai's becoming President also reflected the emergence of alternative sites of power. Facilitated by new technologies and approaches to political practice, these forces remain active today; continuing to influence both the legislative agenda and quotidian life. In doing so, they have helped to bring about an official and grass-roots negotiation of concepts such as trauma, democracy and justice, within the context of Taiwan’s history. Taiwan has entered a period where the very meaning and identity of the island are being renegotiated.

Draft schedule

Saturday 19 May

9:00-9:30am Welcome Remarks

9:30-10:30am Session One: Class and Labour Politics
Chair: Graeme Read, PhD Candidate, Australian Centre on China in the World, ANU
Ho Ming-sho, ‘The Changing Pattern of Politics of Working Hours in Taiwan: From Labor Union to Youth’

10:30-11:00am Morning Tea (participants only)

11:00am-12:30pm Session Two: Contentious Politics in Taiwan’s Democracy
Chair: Nicholas Horton, Honours Student, Crawford School of Public Policy, ANU
Brian Hioe, ‘Lingering Social Movement Structures From the Wild Lily Movement to the Wild Strawberry Movement’
Rowena Ebsworth, ‘Power and Resistance in Taiwan’s Youth Politics’

12:00-1:30pm Lunch (participants only)

1:30-2:30pm Session Three: New Media and Civic Engagement
Chair: TBC
Wong Shiau Ching, ‘Hacking, Forking and Modding Practices of Civic Engagement: g0v and the Civic Technology Movement in Taiwan’

2:30-3:30pm Session Four: Cross-Strait Interactions
Chair: Chen Yu-Hua, PhD Candidate, School of Culture, History and Language, ANU
Ian Rowen, ‘One China, Two Taiwans: Political and Cultural Change in the Context of Cross-Strait Tourism’

3:30-4:00pm Afternoon Tea (participants only)

4:00-5:00pm Session Five: Gender Rights and Civil Society
Chair: Benjamin Penny, Senior Research Fellow, Australian Centre on China in the World, ANU
Jennifer Lu, ‘A New Phase of the Civil Society in Taiwan: A Marriage Equality Movement with Youth Participation’

6:00-7:15pm Keynote Lecture
Freddy Tshiong-tso Lim, 'Metal Politics: From Stage to Congress' (RSVP essential)

Sunday 20 May

9:30-10:30am Session Six: The Changing Meaning of the Martial Law Period
Chair: Scott Pacey, Assistant Professor in the School of Sociology and Social Policy, University of Nottingham
Mark Harrison, ‘From Taiwan Storyland to the Defiers: Representing the Martial Law Period’

10:30-11:00am Morning Tea

11:00-12:30pm Session Seven: The Dynamics of Political Marginalisation
Chair: Rowena Ebsworth, PhD Candidate,
Australian Centre on China in the World, ANU
Elisa Tamburo, ‘Rescaling Futures: Planning, Horizons and the Politics of Urban Relocation in Taiwan’
Graeme Read, ‘Reclaiming this Land of Taiwan: Music and Politics of Youth Independence’

The conference is generously supported by Ministry of Education, Republic of China (Taiwan).

Ministry of Education, Republic of China (Taiwan)



Australian Centre on China in the World
02 6125 9060

Venue map

Updated:  24 April, 2017/Responsible Officer:  Dean, ANU College of Asia & the Pacific/Page Contact:  CAP Web Team