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Call for Paper: Taiwan: Self vs. Other

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The 11th Annual Conference of European Association of Taiwan Studies (EATS).

Moving into the second decade since its birth, the 11th annual EATS conference will be held at the University of Portsmouth, UK, April 30th to May 2nd, 2014. Themed on Taiwan: Self vs. Other, the conference invites papers examining how Taiwan perceives and projects itself to its domestic as well as international audiences. To elaborate on this theme, we suggest seven topics as follows, but we also welcome abstracts which are within the conference theme but are not included in any of the seven suggested panels. Besides, it is our pleasure to also announce the fourth European Taiwan Studies Young Scholars Award (YSA).

Submission is open from Friday 1 November and the deadline is Sunday 15 December 2013. Please submit an A-4 ONE PAGE abstract to info@eats-taiwan.eu (subject: EATS 2014 abstract). After a double-blind review process, an announcement will be made of those accepted by the end of February 2014.

1. Taiwan in international disputes and cross-strait relations

This panel aims to analyse Taiwan’s strategies towards recent sport and territorial disputes in the international arena and their implications on cross-strait relations. Papers might address Taipei’s position, crisis management capability, and the persisting constraints and risks of Taiwan’s unsettled sovereignty.

2. Economy

This panel focuses on Taiwan’s international and regional economic cooperation, related treaties and their influence on different social groups, and their impact on the political decision-making processes. This panel also welcomes papers critically analysing Taiwan’s economic cooperation with Europe and assessing the triangular relationship of Europe, mainland China and Taiwan.

3. Media and politics

The liberalisation of the media played an important role in facilitating Taiwan’s democratisation. However, while Taiwan is now a consolidating democracy, new challenges arise in the interaction between media and politics. This panel invites papers to analyse and evaluate the current performance of the media and their relationship with political processes, institutions, and actors in Taiwan.

4. Public diplomacy

Public diplomacy has attracted increasing interest amongst academics and practitioners. The incumbent government of Taiwan has claimed to use public diplomacy as a core component
of the tandem with ‘diplomatic truce’ with the PRC. This panel invites papers examining Taiwan’s past and present practice of public diplomacy in the broad context of juxtaposing the projected Taiwan ‘self’ with the appealed or contrasted ‘other’.

5. Election

Elections in Taiwan are both frequent and multilayered. They are known for their colourful and intensely fought campaigns and for the typical “election culture” that combines both traditional and modern campaigning methods. They mobilise large parts of society, and often have high voter-turnout. An outstanding trait of Taiwanese democracy no doubt that is thus crucial to its political identity. This panel welcomes papers analysing any aspect of elections per se as well as papers reflecting on their perception by others in East Asia.

6. Taiwan and Europe: Historical and contemporary interconnectivity

The historical relationship between Europe and Taiwan is arguably a process of ‘formal empire’ (under the Dutch and Spanish) to that of ‘informal empire’ (following the signing of treaties in the mid-19th century). This panel welcomes papers that adopt a decentralised socio-cultural analysis that shifts away from a metropolitan perspective. It should instead focus on contrasts and complementarities of port city interconnectivity throughout the geographical and ethnic extremes of both the ‘formal’ and ‘informal’ empire in Taiwan. As the tensions and contradictions between informal empire and international society are also a contemporary issue, this panel also seeks papers exploring contemporary relations between Taiwan and Europe.

7. Contact zone in literature and popular culture

Extending the notion of contact zone to that of literature and popular culture, this panel invites papers figuring ways in which Taiwan literary history embeds the co-presence of multiethnicities and its interaction with foreign cultures over the centuries. Substantiating the argument that the selection of foreign popular culture items reflects the variety of cultural forms that are negotiated and translated, this panel also welcomes papers dealing with theoretical & methodological issues involving cultural translation, ethnography and social media-driven research.

8. MA panel

Master’s degree students enrolled in a Taiwan Studies programme/course or working on a dissertation focusing on Taiwan are encouraged to present in this panel. (Please note that students of non-European institutions are not eligible for the EATS Young Scholar Award.)

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