The Taiwan National Treasure initiative, which aims to create an online archive of official US documents about Taiwan, is up and running.
The Web site, www.nationaltreasure.tw, was launched on Sept. 11.
The materials obtained from the US National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) construct a history of Taiwan from a US perspective, project coleader Lin Yu-cheng (林育正) said on Tuesday.
They enable Taiwanese readers to view themselves from a different vantage point and challenge historical narratives created by the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) during its rule, Lin said.
“We hope the project can help Taiwan create its own national identity,” he said.
The project was launched in September last year by Lin, tech entrepreneur Hsiao Hsin-cheng (蕭新晟) and State University of New York Downstate Medical Center assistant research professor Abraham Chuang (莊士杰).
The program crowd-sources volunteers to scan NARA documents about Taiwan and displays them on an open-access online collection, they said.
The volunteers have come across a myriad of materials, including declassified CIA documents, which include the agency’s communications with agents in Taiwan, economic surveys, interviews with writers of the nativist literature movement and assessments of public opinion in Taiwan, they said.
Hsiao, who designed the Web site, said he hopes it will provide an outside perspective on the history of Taiwan that might disentangle polarized historical debates.
The initiative will contribute to the nation’s formation of a national identity by giving the public an opportunity to objectively view Taiwan’s history, he said.
“NARA has about 60 million documents that are relevant to Taiwan and just 16,000 of them have been processed, so there is a long way to go,” Hsiao said. “In the future, we hope to work on the archives of former colonizers like Japan and the Netherlands.”
Looking at the nation’s history through the lens of US officials poked holes in the KMT’s official narrative, Lin said.
Making US documents available to the public will allow the average citizen to interrogate primary sources and search for historical truths, he added.
“I believe the initiative will be a major contribution to the formation of a new Taiwanese consensus and identity,” Lin said.
A study published by online booking platform Expedia revealed searches for travel to Taipei have ballooned 2,786 percent following the lifting of COVID-19 pandemic travel restrictions due to the city being a “designation dupe” for Seoul. The TikTok trend for duping — referring to substituting a designation for a more inexpensive alternative — helped propel interest in Taipei, it said in a consumer survey titled “Unpack ‘24,” which was conducted from September to October in 14 countries. Location dupes are “every bit as delightful as the tried-and-true places travelers love,” Expedia trend tracker Melanie Fish said of the year’s popular alternatives, which
SAFETY IN REGULATION: The proposal states that Chiayi should assess whether it is viable to establish such a district and draft rules to protect clients and sex workers The Chiayi City Council passed a motion yesterday to assess the viability of establishing a regulated red-light district. The council yesterday held its last session of the year, at which its fiscal 2024 budget was approved, along with 61 other proposals. The proposal to assess the viability of establishing a red-light district was put forward by independent Chiayi City Councilor Molly Yen (顏色不分藍綠支持性專區顏色田慎節). The proposal cited 2011 amendments to the Social Order Maintenance Act (社會秩序維護法), which stipulate that city and county governments can pass autonomous regulations on the sex trade to manage the industry and guarantee industry workers’ rights. A ban on the
A small-scale protest that called on the government to cancel its plan to welcome Indian migrant workers in a bid to tackle Taiwan’s labor shortage was held in Taipei yesterday. During the protest, comprised of a few dozen people staged in front of the Presidential Office on Ketagalan Boulevard, the protest’s chief initiator, a woman identified only as “Yuna” said they wanted the central government to reconsider allowing migrant workers from India to enter Taiwan. Most people in Taiwan had little knowledge about the potential plan to allow in Indian migrant workers until a report in the media last month, she
STABILITY AND CHANGE: Flagging in recent polls, Ko this week pledged to maintain President Tsai’s foreign policy, with an emphasis on improving China relations Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) Chairman and presidential candidate Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) yesterday reiterated that he is “deep-green at heart” in response to accusations that he is pivoting his campaign to align closer with the ideology of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in the face of flagging polls. Ko made the remark at an agricultural policy conference in Taipei, repeating his comments from an interview with CTS News a day earlier. Ko told the CTS host that he would continue to pursue President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) national defense and foreign policy in general, but with an emphasis on establishing a rapport with