loader image
Menu

Month: December 2016

Emily Grubb:  A Weekend in Cinsbu

This video depicts a two-day class trip to the Atayal village of Cinsbu taken by the National Chengchi University’s IMAS class on the Modernization and Socialization of Indigenous Cultures.  During this immersive trip, the class was able to learn about the different spacial planning concepts of indigenous peoples, elementary education in rural aboriginal communities, organic and subsistent farming practices, traditional weaving and land planning techniques, community efforts to protect the local area, as well as many other fascinating topics.  The first day of the trip entailed travel to the village, a meeting and tour with a village representative, picking cabbages at the local organic farm, hands-on activities learning about weaving and basket-making, dinner at the homestay, and learning about local conservation efforts and land-planning while sitting around a campfire.  The second day of the trip began with a six-hour hike through the forest to see 3000 year old trees that have been protected by the community for centuries, followed by hot pot and a parting song from one of the village elders.  All in all, it turned out to be an inspiring, unforgettable, and incredibly educational experience.

Read More »

Research on Childhood Obesity among Preschool-age Children in Taiwan

     I was very fortunate to have the opportunity to be a senior research scholar working on a cross-strait research project in Taiwan and Mainland China. The World Health Organization (WHO) has designated childhood obesity as a global epidemic and a major public health issue. Overweight is defined as a body mass index (BMI) at or above the 85th percentile and below the 95th percentile for children and teens of the same age and sex. Obesity is defined as a BMI at or above the 95th percentile for children and teens of the same age and sex. For adults, overweight is defined as a BMI of 24 to 27.99 and obesity is a BMI of 28 or higher.      The prevalence of childhood obesity is growing fast in many developing countries, including Taiwan. Given that obesity at preschool age is associated with young adulthood obesity and young adulthood obesity is associated with adverse cardio-metabolic psychosocial outcomes, preschool years are a critically important period for developing healthy lifestyles and preventing childhood obesity. As a global health nursing researcher, this opportunity to stay in Taiwan to understand how familial and environmental factors contribute to the global obesity epidemic is one of the best investments I have ever made.

Read More »

Stephen Pan: Unintentional injury mortality among indigenous communities of Taiwan

Can “Tai Chi” mix with dance? Is training from a dance academy the only way? Through his Fulbright exchange, Paul Ocampo shows us that dancers from different generations and cultures can build and share knowledge through the arts. Paul Ocampo is a dancer and an adjunct lecturer at Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. He came to Taiwan to teach dance techniques and the incorporation of body-mind awareness. This video features his reflections on the relationship between Paul and his students and on his personal experiences about the use of breath and the flow of movement.

Read More »

Research and Reflections from Hualien County

    When I visited Taiwan in the summer of 2002, there were no direct flights between the island and mainland China, Freedom Square was still called Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Square, and the now diminutive Mitsukoshi tower was still the tallest building in Taipei. In my suitcase was a Sony Discman with electronic skip protection, along with about ten pounds of CDs with timeless hits like “Gonna make you sweat” by C+C music factory.      Though I only taught English in Taiwan for a few weeks, the experience as a college sophomore left an unexpectedly powerful impression on me. The food was great of course (I must have spent hundreds of dollars eating multiple bowls of shaved ice each day), but being in Taiwan also provided me with an invaluable ethnocultural reference point to understand interethnic relationships and minority identities outside the American context. However, one summer was far too brief, and I knew that I would need to return for a longer stay. Applying to Fulbright      Eleven years later, a viable plan to return to Taiwan was conceived while visiting Taipei as a public health Fulbright student researcher in China. All Fulbright student fellows in China

Read More »

China’s Elusive Nationhood: Ethnic, Cultural, and Civic Dimensions

     Despite the ahistorical claims of those who misread “nationhood” into the millennia of history in present day Greater China, a “Chinese Nation” is a fairly recent concept. As a political ideal, its roots are found in the writings of late Qing dynasty anti-Manchu and anti-imperialist intellectuals and revolutionaries. As a “reality,” it is no older than the 20th century, and a persuasive argument has been made that national consciousness reached much of China only in the 1950’s.1 Nonetheless, the influence of “Chinese nationhood” on both China and the world should not be underestimated.  The success of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in combining nationalism with anti-imperialism and anti-elitism is cited as an explanation for its civil war victory in 1949. 2 In the post-Maoism and post-global communism PRC, nationalism is cited by both Chinese leaders and outside observers as a primary pillar of regime security.      Indeed, as a cognitive political reality, Chinese nationhood seems to explain a lot.  But how does it explain itself? What are its contents? What are the values and norms embodied in the Chinese national image? Is it merely an ultra-realist and humiliation-minded ego of national scale? These questions are fascinating in part because

Read More »