Travel, Cultural Hybridity and Transnational Connections in Taiwanese Graphic Narratives

Zemanek, Adina Simona orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-7960-8646 (2020) Travel, Cultural Hybridity and Transnational Connections in Taiwanese Graphic Narratives. European Journal of East Asian Studies, 19 (1). pp. 98-123. ISSN 1568-0584

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This study adopts a discursive analytical perspective to elaborate on transnational connections and cultural diversity as strategies for defining Taiwaneseness in graphic narratives published between 1997 and 2016. It considers the following aspects represented in the analysed texts: (1) processes of self-identification while travelling abroad; (2) depictions of Taiwan centred on familiar spaces open to outside cultural influences, which become locally appropriated through daily activities that link them to individual emotions and weave them into personal and collective memories; and (3) reaching beyond Taiwan to highlight transnational encounters and connections, thus placing the island within a global or regional framework of reference. The article assesses the degree to which this transnational viewpoint reproduces, challenges or complements existing notions regarding Taiwan’s relations with China, Japan and the US, while also exploring relations established with other nodes of reference: Europe, New Zealand and Hong Kong. It also comments on the extent to which academic critical stances on Taiwan’s multiculturalism and warnings against overlooking existing ties between Taiwan and the PRC in contemporary definitions of nationhood may hold true for the research material.

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