On October 27, 1930, members of six Taiwanese indigenous groups ambushed the Japanese attendees of an athletic competition at the Musha Elementary School, killing 134. The uprising came as a shock to Japanese colonial authorities, whose response was swift and brutal. Heavy artillery and battalions of troops assaulted the region, spraying a wide area with banned poison gas. The Seediq from Mhebu, who led the uprising, were brought to the brink of genocide. Over the ensuing decades, the Musha Incident became seen as a central moment in Taiwan’s colonial history, and different political regimes and movements have seized on it for various purposes. Under the Japanese, it was used to attest to the “barbarity” of Taiwan’s indigenous tribes; the Nationalist regime cited the uprising as proof of the Taiwanese peoples’ heroism and solidarity with the Chinese in resisting the Japanese; and pro-independence groups in Taiwan have portrayed the Seediq people and their history as exemplars of Taiwan’s “authentic” cultural traditions, which stand apart from that of mainland China. This book brings together leading scholars to provide new perspectives on one of the most traumatic episodes in Taiwan’s modern history and its fraught legacies. Contributors from a variety of disciplines revisit the Musha Incident and its afterlife in history, literature, film, art, and popular culture. They unravel the complexities surrounding it by confronting a history of exploitation, contradictions, and misunderstandings. The book also features conversations with influential cultural figures in Taiwan who have attempted to tell the story of the uprising.
This work probes the restaging, representation, and reimagining of historical violence and atrocity in contemporary Chinese fiction, film, and popular culture. It examines five historical moments including the Musha Incident (1930) and the February 28 Incident (1947).
On October 27, 1930, members of six Taiwanese indigenous groups ambushed the Japanese attendees of an athletic competition at the Musha Elementary School, killing 134. The uprising came as a shock to Japanese colonial authorities, whose response was swift and brutal. Heavy artillery and battalions of troops assaulted the region, spraying a wide area with banned poison gas. The Seediq from Mhebu, who led the uprising, were brought to the brink of genocide. Over the ensuing decades, the Musha Incident became seen as a central moment in Taiwan's colonial history, and different political regimes and movements have seized on it for various purposes. Under the Japanese, it was used to attest to the "barbarity" of Taiwan's indigenous tribes; the Nationalist regime cited the uprising as proof of the Taiwanese peoples' heroism and solidarity with the Chinese in resisting the Japanese; and pro-independence groups in Taiwan have portrayed the Seediq people and their history as exemplars of Taiwan's "authentic" cultural traditions, which stand apart from that of mainland China. This book brings together leading scholars to provide new perspectives on one of the most traumatic episodes in Taiwan's modern history and its fraught legacies. Contributors from a variety of disciplines revisit the Musha Incident and its afterlife in history, literature, film, art, and popular culture. They unravel the complexities surrounding it by confronting a history of exploitation, contradictions, and misunderstandings. The book also features conversations with influential cultural figures in Taiwan who have attempted to tell the story of the uprising.
In 1895 Japan acquired Taiwan as its first formal colony after a resounding victory in the Sino-Japanese war. For the next fifty years, Japanese rule devastated and transformed the entire socioeconomic and political fabric of Taiwanese society. In Becoming Japanese, Leo Ching examines the formation of Taiwanese political and cultural identities under the dominant Japanese colonial discourse of assimilation (dôka) and imperialization (kôminka) from the early 1920s to the end of the Japanese Empire in 1945. Becoming Japanese analyzes the ways in which the Taiwanese struggled, negotiated, and collaborated with Japanese colonialism during the cultural practices of assimilation and imperialization. It chronicles a historiography of colonial identity formations that delineates the shift from a collective and heterogeneous political horizon into a personal and inner struggle of "becoming Japanese." Representing Japanese colonialism in Taiwan as a topography of multiple associations and identifications made possible through the triangulation of imperialist Japan, nationalist China, and colonial Taiwan, Ching demonstrates the irreducible tension and contradiction inherent in the formations and transformations of colonial identities. Throughout the colonial period, Taiwanese elites imagined and constructed China as a discursive space where various forms of cultural identification and national affiliation were projected. Successfully bridging history and literary studies, this bold and imaginative book rethinks the history of Japanese rule in Taiwan by radically expanding its approach to colonial discourses.
Social conflicts are ubiquitous and inherent in organized social life. This volume examines the origins and regulation of violent identity conflicts. It focuses on the regulation of conflict: the constraining, directing, and repression of violence through institutional rules and understandings. The core question the authors address is how violence is regulated and the social and political consequences of such regulation. The contributors provide a multidisciplinary multi-regional analysis of identity conflicts and their regulation. The chapters focus on the forging and suppression of religious and ethnic identities, problematic national identities, the recreation of identity in post-conflict peace-building efforts, and the forging of collective identities in the process of democratic state building. The instances of violent conflict treated here range across the globe from Central and South America, to Asia, to the Balkans, and to the Islamic world. One of the key findings is that conflicts involving religious, ethnic, or national identity are inherently more violence prone and require distinctive methods of regulation. Identity is a question both of power and of integrity. This means that both material and symbolic needs must be addressed in order to constrain or regulate these conflicts. Accordingly, some chapters draw on a political-economy approach that places primary emphasis on resources, organization, and interests, while others develop a cultural approach focusing on how identities are constructed, grievances defined, blame attributed, and redress articulated. This volume offers new ideas about the regulation of identity conflicts, at both the global and local level, that engage both tradition and modernization. It will be of interest to policymakers, political scientists, human rights activists, historians, and anthropologists.
In ancient China a monster called Taowu was known for both its vicious nature and its power to see the past and the future. Over the centuries Taowu underwent many incarnations until it became identifiable with history itself. Since the seventeenth century, fictive accounts of history have accommodated themselves to the monstrous nature of Taowu. Moving effortlessly across the entire twentieth-century literary landscape, David Der-wei Wang delineates the many meanings of Chinese violence and its literary manifestations. Taking into account the campaigns of violence and brutality that have rocked generations of Chinese—often in the name of enlightenment, rationality, and utopian plenitude—this book places its arguments along two related axes: history and representation, modernity and monstrosity. Wang considers modern Chinese history as a complex of geopolitical, ethnic, gendered, and personal articulations of bygone and ongoing events. His discussion ranges from the politics of decapitation to the poetics of suicide, and from the typology of hunger and starvation to the technology of crime and punishment.
On October 27, 1930, during a sports meet at Musha Elementary School on an aboriginal reservation in the mountains of Taiwan, a bloody uprising occurred unlike anything Japan had experienced in its colonial history. Before noon, the Atayal tribe had slain one hundred and thirty-four Japanese in a headhunting ritual. The Japanese responded with a militia of three thousand, heavy artillery, airplanes, and internationally banned poisonous gas, bringing the tribe to the brink of genocide. Nearly seventy years later, Chen Guocheng, a writer known as Wu He, or "Dancing Crane," investigated the Musha Incident to search for any survivors and their descendants. Remains of Life, a milestone of Chinese experimental literature, is a fictionalized account of the writer's experiences among the people who live their lives in the aftermath of this history. Written in a stream-of-consciousness style, it contains no paragraph breaks and only a handful of sentences. Shifting among observations about the people the author meets, philosophical musings, and fantastical leaps of imagination, Remains of Life is a powerful literary reckoning with one of the darkest chapters in Taiwan's colonial history.
Indigenous Cultural Translation is about the process that made it possible to film the 2011 Taiwanese blockbuster Seediq Bale in Seediq, an endangered indigenous language. Seediq Bale celebrates the headhunters who rebelled against or collaborated with the Japanese colonizers at or around a hill station called Musha starting on October 27, 1930, while this book celebrates the grandchildren of headhunters, rebels, and collaborators who translated the Mandarin-language screenplay into Seediq in central Taiwan nearly eighty years later. As a "thick description" of Seediq Bale, this book describes the translation process in detail, showing how the screenwriter included Mandarin translations of Seediq texts recorded during the Japanese era in his screenplay, and then how the Seediq translators backtranslated these texts into Seediq, changing them significantly. It argues that the translators made significant changes to these texts according to the consensus about traditional Seediq culture they have been building in modern Taiwan, and that this same consensus informs the interpretation of the Musha Incident and of Seediq culture that they articulated in their Mandarin-Seediq translation of the screenplay as a whole. The argument more generally is that in building cultural consensus, indigenous peoples like the Seediq are "translating" their traditions into alternative modernities in settler states around the world.
The people movement to Christ among the original inhabitants (formerly called the "mountain tribes") of Taiwan has been called a "Twentieth Century Miracle." From 1929 to 1960 about 50% of the eleven different groups of Malayo-Polynesian peoples became Protestant Christians "Pentecost of the Hills" utilizes history,politics, sociology, anthropology and missiology to tell their story for the first time. This is not a missionary account--it relates how God raised up local leaders to do the major work of evangelism and nurture.
Featuring over 140 Chinese and non-Chinese contributors, this landmark volume, edited by David Der-wei Wang, explores unconventional forms as well as traditional genres, emphasizes Chinese authors’ influence on foreign writers as well as China’s receptivity to outside literary influences, and offers vibrant contrasting voices and points of view.
Colonial agents worked for fifty years to make a Japanese Taiwan, using technology, culture, statistics, trade, and modern ideologies to remake their new territory according to evolving ideas of Japanese empire. Since the end of the Pacific War, this project has been remembered, imagined, nostalgized, erased, commodified, manipulated, idealized and condemned by different sectors of Taiwan's population. The volume covers a range of topics, including colonial-era photography, exploration, postwar deportation, sport, film, media, economic planning, contemporary Japanese influences on Taiwanese popular culture, and recent nostalgia for and misunderstandings about the colonial era. Japanese Taiwan provides an interdisciplinary perspective on these related processes of colonization and decolonization, explaining how the memories, scars and traumas of the colonial era have been utilized during the postwar period. It provides a unique critique of the 'Japaneseness' of the erstwhile Chinese Taiwan, thus bringing new scholarship to bear on problems in contemporary East Asian politics.
Romance, Family, and Nation in Japanese Colonial Literature explores how Japanese writers in Korea, Manchuria, and Taiwan used narratives of romantic and familial love in order to traverse the dangerous currents of empire. Focusing on the period between 1937 and 1945, this study discusses how literary renderings of interethnic relations reflect the numerous ways that Japan s imperial expansion was imagined: as an unrequited romance, a reunion of long-separated families, an oppressive endeavor, and a utopian collaboration. The manifestations of romance, marriage, and family in colonial literature foreground how writers positioned themselves vis-à-vis empire and reveal the different conditions, consequences, and constraints that they faced in rendering Japanese colonialism.