Wed, Jan 01, 2014 - Page 5 News List

Novel tells of Taiwan’s ‘hidden history’

GOOD REVIEWS:Critics have praised Chao Hui-lin’s book as an epic saga about the history of the nation’s Pingpu Aborigines written from their perspective for the first time

By Jason Pan  /  Staff reporter

Through the memories, stories and eyewitness accounts of the elders of the Pingpu communities, Chao said she was able to write what she calls a “history of the common people” as the basis for her book.

Writing a book focused on central Taiwan was prompted in part when Chao discovered that one of her ancestors came from the Papora community of Dadu Township.

“Yes, my family has a Papora bloodline, but also Hoklo, Hakka and from other ethnic groups. It is good that I have a multiethnic makeup, that I am a multicultural person, just like Taiwan’s history,” she said.

Chao compared the historical fiction, based on the stories of the elders of Aboriginal communities, to a “dramatization of history stories for a TV soap opera” and said there are plans to turn it into a movie or a theater production.

She received grants from the Ministry of Culture and the National Culture and Arts Foundation during her research for the novel.

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