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Ta-Wei Chi, Yu-Li Lin Discuss Gay Literature, German Experience at 2018 Frankfurt Book Fair

22 October 2018 / Hot News

Ta-Wei Chi and Yu-Li Lin, the Taiwan Pavilion recommended authors at the 2018 Frankfurt Book Fair, garnered praise on Oct. 11th for their talks on the international stage in the world’s largest book show. The two took the stage to address issues on LGBT research and German studies, respectively; attracting a crowd comprising local and international professionals. The well-received event was hosted by Frankfurter Buchmesse Vice President Holger Volland.

Chi Talks Gay History in Predemocratic Taiwan 

Chi, as a gay researcher and writer, especially draws attention from the German press. Discussions on such issues as gender equality are diverse and abundant in Taiwan with the country’s open and free democratic environment, according to Chi. Gay history started long before the island’s democratization, he said, adding that the development was heavily influenced by the U.S. rather than the former colonizer Japan in predemocratic Taiwan, especially in terms of homophobia and its effects.

Many audience members were curious about Chi’s dual role as a science fiction writer and literary historian. It was high time for science fiction writing in turn-of-the-century Taiwan, Chi said, as the country was fresh out of a 38-year martial law rule and had vivid imagination about what the future might have in store. “It’s time now to turn our gaze to the past, especially our own history, in the 21st century Taiwan,” he added.


Lin Profiles Germany from Asian Perspective

Building on his ten years of experience in Germany, Lin has been known for providing Asian journalistic insight into observations of the European nation. This year Lin brought his TIBE (Taipei International Book Exhibition) Prize-winning title Die Macht in der Mitte Europas: Wie sich Deutschland neu erfindet to Frankfurt and wowed German readers with his unique Asian take on the current state of German affairs.

Most Taiwanese people see Germany as a country of openness, freedom, and inclusion, Lin said. Such a positive outlook is going from strength to strength as an increasing number of local young people witness firsthand German society’s diversity via the thriving working holiday program, he added.

Lin points out in his award-winning book that Taiwan can learn from Germany’s experience in handling such issues as renewable energy, the fair treatment of ethnic minorities, and historical trauma. Among the topics covered in the book, transitional justice and energy source transition are of particular interest to Taiwan as the country is facing the same situationthe author said.