The National Taiwan University (NTU) Student Association yesterday said that it would in the new semester unveil a series of activities that engage students and the public in the “reinterpretation of the school’s history” and redefine the reputation of former university president Fu Si-nian (傅斯年).
The association said that it has established a transitional justice committee to review cases of alleged human rights infringement during the Martial Law era, when thousands of political dissidents were arrested and even executed by the then-Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) regime.
“Young people were a major force behind the development of Taiwan’s democracy. The association believes that only by talking about history and politics upfront can transitional justice be achieved on campus and in Taiwan,” it said.
Photo provided by National Taiwan University Student Association
To shed more light on the development of the nation’s democracy and the role the university played, the committee said that it last semester wrote several columns and held lectures.
Although it has long held prestige for having a liberal academic environment, there was a time when the university’s “liberty” was defined and controlled by authoritarian management, which followed the orders of the then-KMT regime, the committee said.
One example of student oppression was the “April 6 Incident” (四六事件), in which police arrested 21 students at NTU and seven at National Taiwan Normal University, who the government suspected of being underground members of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), which was at war with the KMT, it said.
Then-NTU president Fu is generally perceived as a hero for his determined actions to protect students, the association said, but added that Fu might have actually approved of — and even assisted — the entry of military personnel onto the campus.
The association said that it hopes to deepen students’ understanding of NTU’s history, as well as the relationship between Taiwan and the CCP, through lectures, interviews and commemorative events in the new semester.
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