講題(Topic)： The Role of the School of Oriental and African Studies in the Development of Taiwan Studies in Europe: From Taiwan Studies desert to global leader
主講者(Speaker)： Dr. Dafydd Fell (Deputy Director of the Centre of Taiwan Studies, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London)
時間(Date & Time)： 2010/12/08(三) 10:00 am -12:00 pm
Over the last seven year there has been a remarkable transformation in the state of Taiwan studies in Europe. In the late 1990s, Europe could still be categorized as a Taiwan studies desert. There were no Taiwan centred postgraduate courses or degrees. There were no regular Taiwan focused conferences or seminar series. There were no Taiwan studies academic associations or programmes. Although there was a number of Europe based scholars working on Taiwan, there were no Taiwan focused academic positions. Unsurprisingly, only a limited amount of Taiwan research was being published by Europe based scholars. On almost every standard European Taiwan studies lagged behind its counterparts in the United States.
Nevertheless the rapid development of European Taiwan studies since 2000 has meant that the field has not only caught up with, but in some areas even surpassed its American counterparts. By 2007, at least ten European institutions offered Taiwan centred postgraduate courses and the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) had established the first postgraduate degree in Taiwan studies on offer outside of Taiwan. There is now a continent-wide Taiwan studies association with an annual conference, the European Association of Taiwan Studies conference. This is an interdisciplinary conference that is the key event in Europe’s Taiwan studies calendar, where the leading Taiwan studies scholars based in Europe congregate each April. This is something that Taiwan studies in the United States have failed to achieve, as the various groups often appear to work in isolation.
Although there has also been a simultaneous growth in Chinese studies in Europe, this has not had a detrimental impact on the development of Taiwan studies programmes. Instead, there has been a huge growth in the number and scope of the Taiwan studies academic programmes throughout Europe, so that by 2007 there were over ten active Taiwan studies centres or programmes in Europe compared to less than half a dozen in the United States. These Taiwan studies programmes have concentrated mainly on organizing seminars and conferences, but also have increasingly also begun teaching projects. In addition, a number new Taiwan studies academic posts have been created in Europe, actually exceeding the number of equivalent posts in the United States. Finally, while the M.E. Sharpe Taiwan book series appears to be in decline, two Taiwan studies book series have emerged in Europe, one at Harrassowitz and one at Routledge. In short, Europe has been transformed from a Taiwan studies desert into a leading region in Taiwan research.
In this paper I outline the role that the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) Taiwan Studies Programme has played in the recent development of Taiwan studies in Europe. The contribution made by SOAS in the following four areas is addressed: (1) Taiwan studies teaching, (2) Taiwan studies academic events, (3) Taiwan studies institutional cooperation, (4) Taiwan studies publications. In a mark of the important role played by SOAS in 2007 its Centre of Taiwan Studies was awarded the French Taiwanese Culture Prize for its contribution to the development of Taiwan studies in Europe.