The long-running US television series The Big Bang Theory focuses on a group of scientists at the California Institute of Technology, depicting how different the daily routine is for high-IQ geniuses as compared to ordinary people, and winning a global audience in the process. But Taiwan too has a place where brilliant people congregate, with countless anecdotes of eccentric geniuses. It is Taiwan’s leading academic research institution: the Academia Sinica.
With a façade that resembles a spacecraft from an alien planet, the design concept of the National Kaohsiung Center for the Arts was inspired by nearby groves of old banyan trees with interwoven aerial roots. The center not only looks avant-garde, but the ambitions its management team have for the venue really rock too. They hope to grow a flower of performing arts in south Taiwan—once considered a cultural desert—and make their voice heard internationally from the island’s southern tip.
“As soon as the decorated lanterns were hung, a constant flow of brightly attired highly placed officials, influential personalities, and well-connected geishas from Tainan’s Shinmachi pleasure quarters arrived by rickshaw at the entrance. Although Hukuisu was classified as a ryotei-style Japanese restaurant, in reality it played the role of a major underground decision-making center in Tainan during the Showa Era and as such was intimately connected with the city’s modern-day historical
As Taiwan’s national radio station and its only international radio broadcaster, Radio Taiwan International has experienced many changes over the course of ROC history and left its own sparkling record of accomplishment. Radio’s power is unrestrained by distance. It provides a comforting beacon for listeners and a voice that inspires. Through its broadcasts in 14 languages, RTI reaches audiences around the globe. It has been broadcasting for nine decades, yet has managed to keep pace with the
In 2018, a partly finished national-level hiking trail that stretches more than 400 kilometers was given its official name: the Raknus Selu Trail. Running through Hakka communities near Provincial Highway 3, it has been stitched together from old trails, farming roads, and narrow hiking paths. This area used to be covered with native camphor wood forests.
People joke that the Nanhui region has nine suns, for it is bathed in searing sunshine the whole year round. When the Taitung County Government inaugurated its “The Hidden South” arts project in May 2018, it invited 20 artists to sojourn in the county’s four southernmost townships and to place this region on the map by creating works that engage in dialogue with its cultural riches.
The encyclopedic Ming-Dynasty Compendium of Materia Medica states: “Bitter melon is bitter, cold, and non-toxic; it can relieve unhealthy heat and exhaustion from overwork, and can relieve fever and improve eyesight.” Through 20 years of arduous field experiments, the Hualien District Agricultural Research and Extension Station has bred seven varieties of bitter melon (Momordica charantia).
December 28, 1988 was the date of the “Return Our Mother Tongue” march, which called for Hakka education, Hakka television and radio shows, and the lifting of restrictions on broadcasts in “dialect.” It was the first event that brought widespread attention to Hakka activism.
Long criticized as a major source of pollution, the chemicals industry is today moving into the vanguard of environmental protection. Hair O’right International Corporation’s fully integrated green supply chain exemplifies the company’s core commitment to environmental protection, and Taiwan’s prowess in terms of green innovation.
“The wise love water, the benevolent love the mountains.” It just so happens that of the two main north‡south roads through Hualien County, one follows the coast while the other runs between two mountain ranges. This month, our occasional “Cycling Taiwan” series takes us to Provincial Highway 9, which passes between the Central and Coastal Ranges. Just as the benevolent embrace all things, so has Hualien’s East Rift Valley embraced all manner of architectural styles over the last century.