Blacklist: A Film by Christina Hu

Starting in the early 1970s, thousands of Taiwanese immigrants came to the United States each year, in pursuit of higher education and better lives for their families. Yet, mostly untold, is the story of how hundreds of these Taiwanese in America were put on a blacklist by the government in Taiwan, for speaking out for democracy and human rights in Taiwan while they were in the United States. Once outside of Taiwan, that generation of Taiwanese graduate students were exposed to the values of freedom…

End of an Era: Farewell to the Formosa Foundation

As observers and partners of the many active organizations in support of Taiwan and the Taiwanese American community, the staff of TaiwaneseAmerican.org has had the privilege of working with leaders, organizers, and activists throughout our extensive network. One of those esteemed organizations is the Formosa Foundation, based in Los Angeles. Their mission, like many other "1st generation" organizations, has been a noble one--promoting and supporting the Taiwanese people's right to self-determination…

Summer in Taiwan and #blacklivesmatter

The police officer suspected of murdering Philando Castile looks like he could be my father, my uncle, my brother. Asians and Asian Americans do not deserve to be silent. I’m spending the summer in Taiwan, learning and unlearning what it means to occupy a Taiwanese body in an American space; an American body in a Taiwanese space.My thirteen-year-old cousin asks me about my two best friends in college. They are handsome, black, and male. A computer programmer and a gifted medical student.She…

2016 Taiwan Gay Pride Parade in NY

HELP Taiwan be represented at the 2016 New York Gay Pride Parade! Did you know that Taiwan is the home of Asia’s largest Gay Pride parade? But the last time there was a float representing Taiwan in the New York Pride Parade was in 2010! There hasn’t been a Taiwan float these past couple of years because registration fees and the cost of a putting together a float are quite high. Now more than ever, in the wake of the June 12th shooting at the Orlando nightclub Pulse, we need to show our support…

228 and the Power of Storytelling

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="735"] "For those of us who remember that every struggle is for a glory beyond our own." Drawing by Leona Chen, December 2015[/caption] (Amma, I may be studying Walt Whitman, but I am writing my way back to you.) I was born in 1996, the year of Taiwan’s first direct presidential election. Exactly two decades later, we have named the first woman president of Taiwan (and the second female head of state in the history of East Asia). And while we have tremendous…

Rally for United Nations Membership for Taiwan

Despite being one of the world's youngest successful democracies, Taiwan continues to be excluded from the United Nations. Among many consequences, that means Taiwan is unable to fully participate in and contribute its resources to global institutions such as the World Health Organization and forced to enter international competitions under the name of "Chinese Taipei."The United Nations Membership for Taiwan – Keep Taiwan Free March & Rally has become a well-known event for many residing…

In Honor of Taiwanese Ancestry and Identity

Throughout my own life, the Taiwanese American community has been synonymous with family. The people around me inherently understood Taiwan’s culture and history; these were so deeply embedded that we could even claim polarizing political differences within our Taiwanese ethnicities. This upbringing was such a privilege; I am grateful to my elders and surrounding friends for fostering this sense of awareness.But I have come to realize that simply identifying as “Taiwanese American” or…

Tongues like Swords: American Privilege in Taiwan

Being an American is a funny thing. Because, being an American carries some serious cultural currency in most parts of the world, mostly due to the fact that since the end of WWII the US has held hegemonic power, both militarily and economically. (Not to say we are or are not necessarily well-liked, but that’s a different question altogether). In many parts of the world, the sort of idea that “West is best” has been very pervasive, and this manifests itself in all facets of life. This is…

Taiwanese Americans in Solidarity

Although systemic racism is the oldest motif in American history, recent events – including the Michael Brown shooting in Ferguson and the protests in Baltimore – have prompted us to thoroughly confront what it means to be a person of color in the United States.As Taiwanese Americans, our phenotype generally assigns us to a vague “Asian” aesthetic.This “Asian” aesthetic then ascribes us to certain privileges and disadvantages.Historically, the Asian American community has…