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Tag: book review

A reporter’s snapshots capture democracy in Taiwan

  Taiwan: Snapshots of Democracy in Action (我鏡頭下的民主時刻) is a photo book by Taiwan-based German journalist Klaus Bardenhagen (aka taiwanreporter). As well as being packed with photos it is fully bilingual with text in English and Chinese. The book covers the period from 2008 to 2012 which was Ma Ying-jeou’s first term as president. Events are neatly […]

Book review: Why China Will Never Rule the World

In the introduction to Why China Will Never Rule the World author Troy Parfitt sets out his motivation for writing the book. Neither academic nor journalist, he simply wants to see things for himself. However, Parfitt does not arrive in China as a naive foreigner. Instead he has already spent more than a decade living on […]

A tale of two nations

It might seem hard to imagine now but 20 years ago there were many similarities between the political situation in Taiwan and China. Both countries had an authoritarian polity with strict controls on freedom of speech. On university campuses the party-state (KMT or CCP) maintained tight control over student organisations and political activities. The situation […]

Book review: Song of Orchid Island

Song of Orchid Islandby Barry MartinsonGabriel Press, Taipei, 2006ISBN: 9868221900purchase from Amazon.com * * * * *  I first learnt of this book when I heard its author, Father Barry Martinson, interviewed on What's up in Taiwan. It made me very curious to learn more both about Orchid Island (蘭嶼 or Lan Yu) and Father […]

Book review: ABC Chinese-English Dictionary

ABC Chinese-English Dictionaryedited by John DeFrancisUniversity of Hawai'i Press, Honolulu, 1999 (pocket edition)ISBN: 0824821548Cost: NT$630 at Caves Books, Taipei I earlier reviewed the Far East Pinyin Chinese-English Dictionary. The ABC Dictionary actually takes the organisation of Chinese words by pinyin a step further. Rather than just indexing characters by pinyin it indexes individual words by […]

Chinese characters explained

Illustrated Account of Chinese Characters (漢字圖解)(Chinese-English bilingual edition with Traditional Chinese characters)Compiled by Guanghui Xie (謝光輝)Joint Publishing, Hong Kong, 2003ISBN: 9620420888 Cost: NT$700 at Hess Bookstore, Wenhua Road, Banqiao *****  There are many books on the market that try to explain Chinese characters. This is by far the best one I have ever seen. Each […]