The end of this semester marked my completion of the coursework requirements in the Master’s of Taiwan Studies program at NCCU (國立政治大學). The classes I took this semester were Political Development of Taiwan and International Relations of Taiwan. They were both great classes — Taiwan presents a vast amount of rich subject matter on these topics.
In International Relations I gave a presentation on “Taiwan and the Pacific Island Nations”. This topic is very worthy of further research, particularly looking at Taiwan’s relations with the Solomon Islands and the effects of China’s growing influence in the region.
On Monday I presented my thesis proposal to my thesis committee. The thesis looks at the current situation of indigenous rights in Taiwan based on a case study of the Smangus Beech Tree Incident. The proposal was passed and now I need to work hard on writing my thesis over the summer.
Although the semester is over next week there is a conference of the Society for East Asian Anthropology of the American Anthropological Association at Academia Sinica. A group of students from the Taiwan Studies program are presenting posters with the theme of “Latitude 121° East: Locality in Our Time”. My poster is titled “Indigenous Rights in Taiwan and the Smangus Case”.