Tue, May 22, 2018 - Page 4 News List

Taiwanese literature students exhibit their creations

By Chang Hsuan-che and Jonathan Chin  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Students from Providence University’s Taiwanese Literature Department display graphic novels and other creative works on Wednesday last week at a graduation exhibition in Taichung.

Photo: Chang Hsuan-che, Taipei Times

Taichung’s Providence University last week held an exhibition featuring creations by students enrolled in the Taiwanese Literature Department.

The students’ works — papers, essays, literary pieces, photo journalism, graphic novels, table-top games and handmade soaps, among others — are responses to Herman Hesse’s book Siddhartha, department chair Lai Sung-hui (賴松輝) said.

The students’ creations were grouped into “theses,” “cultural communication” and “creative” categories, he said.

Notable theses included a paper on the influence of the Taiwan New Culture Movement on views about marriage and the development of the female perspective in works of the Japanese colonial period, a paper on novelist Weng Nao (翁鬧) and another on Taiwanese science fiction as a projection of contemporary concerns and apocalyptic fears, Lai said.

The cultural communication works included a travel literature piece on old factories in Taiwan that have been converted into tourist attractions, a photo essay on tattoo artists and a journalism piece on the growth of the “slow movement” in four Taiwanese cities.

There was also a farmer’s almanac combining a modern design aesthetic with practical function, an illustrated book on air pollution, an essay on traditional home cooking and family memories, handmade triangle rush (藺草) soap and a board game based on Taiwan in the Japanese colonial period.

The creative category included an essay coauthored by three students recounting their daily lives, a literary diary, a reflection on mountain climbing, an introduction to Thai culture and society, and an illustrated book with trees as a metaphor for life’s choices.

Cheng Hsieh-yu (鄭絜予), creator of the photo essay “Naked Tattoo” (刺?), said she searched online to discover tattoo artists in Taipei, Kaohsiung and Taitung that she could interview.

The tattoo artists’ personal stories reveal family relationships, dreams and ambitions often intensified by race or LGBT identity, she said.

Her book aims to raise social awareness about underprivileged minorities that live on the periphery of society, she added.

Liu Yu-kai (劉祐愷) and Shih Yu-hung’s (史裕鴻) graphic novel Tale of A Shattered Island (碎島物語), is an apocalyptic story with an environmentalist bent inspired by Taiwanese folklore.

Chu Wen-chun (朱文君) and Lai Yu-ching’s (賴玉晴) table-top game Surviving Life on the Island (浮島殘生) is designed to impart an authentic historic experience of colonial history.

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