Global Island: Taiwan and the World. Taiwan Studies Workshop

University of Washington Taiwan Studies Program
18.10.2018 - 19.10.2018
James Lin

From an island embedded within early modern trade networks, in its interactions with colonial and imperial powers, and as a site for development and democracy, Taiwan has been shaped by its global connections and in turn changed the world. Understanding Taiwan within a global context reveals not just how Taiwan’s history, society, and culture have unfolded, but also how Taiwan has played a crucial role in transnational processes as a site of global production.

The “Global Island” workshop imagines Taiwan within new spatial and chronological contexts, and reorients Taiwan studies away from traditional imaginations of Taiwan as limited to comparatives or cross straits relations. This academic workshop will explore the implications of Taiwan’s connections with the world on Taiwanese society and culture, as well as Taiwan’s influence upon the rest of the world.

Keynote speaker: Professor Wen-hsin Yeh (UC Berkeley)

We invite scholars (advanced PhD candidates, postdoctoral fellows, junior, and senior scholars) from the social sciences and humanities (history, anthropology, sociology, political science, architecture, urban studies, economics, geography, literature, film studies, and other related disciplines) to present their ongoing research projects in a small, intensive workshop format. Potential topics and questions include, but are not limited to:

- The role of Taiwan and its people within the world
- Taiwan as a model or a global site of knowledge production for development and/or democracy
- Taiwan’s economic growth and its implications for global capitalism
- The influence of Taiwan on Dutch, Qing, Japanese, or American empire/colonialism and vice versa
- Democratization within the context of global authoritarianism, nationalism, civil society, and human rights movements
- Transnational migration and global diaspora, e.g. of Taiwanese abroad, Southeast Asian migrant laborers to Taiwan, etc.
- Maritime Taiwan within global sea-based circulations of commodities, ideas, and capital
- Circuits of ideas, technologies, and practices, including cultural exchanges and scientific networks
- Taiwan shaping the global Cold War
- Global discourses of race, ethnicity, and identity, including of indigenous peoples
- Transnational ecological and non-human agents, such as typhoons, migratory animals, and natural resources
- Cross-straits relations or Taiwan in comparison, reexamined through new theoretical, spatial, or chronological lenses
- Participants will be expected to pre-circulate substantive works-in-progress, such as dissertation/manuscript chapters or journal articles, and discuss them in small workshop sessions.

Two nights of local accommodation and meals will be provided for all participants. Additional limited travel funding may be available to subsidize airfare for those without funding support from their home institutions.

Please send an abstract (250-350 words), title, and brief academic biography (1-2 paragraphs) as a single PDF file to by June 15, 2018. If the abstract is for a part of a larger project (i.e. a manuscript, dissertation, etc.), please also provide brief context (2-3 sentences) of the larger project.

Participants will be notified in early to mid-July.


James Lin

Global Island: Taiwan and the World. Taiwan Studies Workshop, 18.10.2018 – 19.10.2018 Seattle, in: Connections. A Journal for Historians and Area Specialists, 13.05.2018, <>.
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