(P122)

Action-oriented ethnological/anthropological studies and the development of contemporary Taiwan indigenous society (TSAE panel)

Location 102b
Date and Start Time 18 May, 2014 at 10:30

Convenors

Da-Wei Kuan (National Cheng-Chi University) email
Wen-Ling Chen (Cheng-Chi University) email
Mail All Convenors

Short Abstract

This panel shows the relations between ethnology/anthropology and indigenous development in contemporary Taiwan. By presenting four studies involve in diverse indigenous issues, this panel discusses the partnership and ethical issues in the collaboration between academic and indigenous communities.

Long Abstract

Developmentalism was a set of powerful concepts, principles and practices in 20th century that often led to the states' policies of cultural assimilation and resource exploitation in the indigenous societies. Recently, new paradigm of indigenous development seeking for the "development with identity and dignity" gradually rises within the efforts of grassroots practices and theoretical revisions. Aiming to reveal the relations between Ethnology/Anthropology and the development of indigenous societies in contemporary Taiwan, this panel presents four action-oriented researches respectively involve in indigenous education, health, land and post-disaster reconstruction. By elaborating these examples, this panel discusses the partnership between academic and indigenous communities, and also discusses the ethical issues in the collaboration.

The presenters in this panel include:

1) Yueh-Po Huang(Post Doctoral Researcher, College of Social Sciences, National Cheng-Chi University, Topic of presentation: indigenous education);

2) Hung-Yu Ru(Assistant Professor, Dept. of Human Development, Tzu-Chi University, Topic of presentation: indigenous health issue);

3) Da-Wei Kuan(Assistant Professor, Dept. of Ethnology, National Cheng-Chi University, Topic of presentation: indigenous land issue);

4) Wen-Ling Chen(Assistant Professor, Dept. of Ethnology, National Cheng-Chi University, Topic of presentation: post-disaster reconstruction in indigenous area).

This panel is closed to new paper proposals.

Papers

A comparative analysis of the immersion program at two Atayal schools in northern Taiwan

Author: Yueh-Po Huang (Academia Sinica)  email

Short Abstract

The paper will explore the verbal interaction between teachers and students in two classrooms at two nursery schools in an Atayal region in northern Taiwan: one with the immersion program and the other without, with a view to making a comparative analysis between the two schools. The result of the observation revealed that the two classrooms exhibit certain features that distinguish them from each other. The author made some conclusive remarks for improvement in the issues.

Long Abstract

In Taiwan, the development of indigenous educational policy is linked to the social and educational movements in the 1990s in the wake of the 1980s political liberalization such as the lifting of martial law in that country. It was during that period that the authorities began to recognize indigenous education such as ‘mother tongue instruction’ as a necessary form of educational activity and gave it a legitimate status by drafting the Indigenous Educational Act in 1996.

Since then, a number of professionals, educators and practitioners have been promoting ‘immersion program’ under the aegis of Ministry of Education and Council of Indigenous Peoples in Taiwan. It is revealed that immersion program in that country is still in a developing stage with many challenges to encounters in the foreseeable future. The paper will explore the verbal interaction between teachers and students in two classrooms at two nursery schools in an Atayal region in northern Taiwan: one with the immersion program and the other without, with a view to making a comparative analysis between the two schools. It gave a delineation of through the use of observation the classroom dynamics in these two schools. A number of observation forms (such as Flanders’ Interaction Analysis Categories) were made by which to record what immersion activities were planned and promoted. The results will reveal that there are several types of verbal interaction between teachers and students in these classrooms under investigation.

Indigenous place names and disaster management: an ethno-physiographical study in the Tayal communities, Taiwan

Author: Da-Wei Kuan (National Cheng-Chi University)  email

Short Abstract

This paper presents an ethno-physiographical study in Taiwan that reveals the value of indigenous ecological knowledge for disaster management in contemporary society.

Long Abstract

Ethno-physiography is an inter-disciplinary approach studying how different cultures perceive and conceptualize landscape. Such an approach provides a possibility for the dialogue between modern science and indigenous knowledge. Taking the Austronesia language speaking indigenous communities in Taiwan as example, this paper aims to reveal the application of ethno-physiographical information in contemporary disaster management. This paper is based on extensive ethnographic research in the Tayal indigenous communities in the mountain area of northern Taiwan. This paper: 1) retraces local environmental history and reveals the inappropriacy of current disaster management ruled by the government in this region; 2) explores the way Tayal indigenous people identify, categorize, interpret the landscape through the analysis of indigenous place names; 3) reveals the ecological philosophy behind and show how these knowledge can contribute to disaster management. In the end, this paper makes suggestions to the establishment of community-based disaster management regime that integrates indigenous knowledge in it.

Paving the way for indigenous health: the strategies of promoting indigenous health in eastern Taiwan

Author: Hung-Yu Ru (Tzu-Chi University)  email

Short Abstract

This study explores the defects of the current working model of promoting indigenous health in Taiwan. A follow-up study will be carried out to explore if the new model created by the cooperation of the government, local agents and researchers improves the consequences of promoting indigenous health in 2014.

Long Abstract

By adopting the approach of formative research, the purpose of this study is to create a new mode to promote indigenous health in eastern Taiwan. The indigenous peoples of Taiwan are suffering from poor health conditions. The life expectancies of indigenous people’s are about ten years shorter than non-indigenous people. The morbidities and mortalities of liver disease caused by over alcohol consumption, tuberculosis, and accident are leading causes of death among indigenous peoples, and significant higher than non-indigenous people. Notably, indigenous health disparity reflects the political, economic, and institutional discrimination of the nation state in certain historical context. To solve indigenous health disparity, the government began a measure to promote indigenous health by adopting the spirit of the Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion in 1999. By employing anthropological methodologies, this study explored the working model of promoting indigenous health in eastern Taiwan in 2013. Several defects were identified during the first year of this study. To address the defects, researchers worked closely with the government and local agents to improve the working model. Several meetings and workshops were held to empower the government and local agents to create new strategies for implementing, monitoring, and evaluating the measures of promoting indigenous health by researchers. A follow-up study will be carried to explore whether or not the new model created by the cooperation of the government, local agents and researchers improves the consequences of promoting indigenous health in 2014.

Post-disaster reconstruction after Haitang and Morakot: a case study of the indigenous community in Southeast Taiwan

Author: Wen-Ling Chen (Cheng-Chi University)  email

Short Abstract

Aiming to rethink how anthropologists can contribute their expertise in the studies of disaster, this paper discusses the cultural conflicts and adaptations during the reconstruction process after the disaster during to the typhoons.

Long Abstract

The history of disaster anthropology began in mid-20th century. Instead of seeing disaster as an unpredictable accident, disaster anthropology developed a new concept after 1980s that deems disaster as a fundamental element of natural environment, and at the same time a structural feature of human system. In this way, disaster is related to politics, economy, and power. Disaster is therefore part of human society and culture.

Typhoon Haitang in 2005 and Typhoon Morakot in 2009 have caused serious natural disasters for villages in the watershed of Taimali River which is in the Southeast of Taiwan. Local government and a part of local residents have to face the big issues of temporary relocation and resettlement again and again. However, in the reconstruction process, the charities flooded into the village and the inappropriate government policy impacted more than the natural phenomena.

For many years, residents have adapted to local natural environment and culture, and created new social structure and ethnic relationships and syncretic religious beliefs which are different from those in their original villages. In this social context of multi-ethnic structure, what are the factors which influence local indigenous peoples of different villages in dealing with the issue of resettlement?

Aiming to rethink how anthropologists can contribute their expertise in the studies of disaster, this paper discusses the cultural conflicts and adaptations during the reconstruction process from the perspective of anthropology.

This panel is closed to new paper proposals.