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[Announcement] Speech by Dr. Timothy Clifford, an American Fulbright Scholar, Speech Topic: “Poetry and Mining in Colonial Taiwan”


Dr. Timothy Clifford, an American 2018-2019 Fulbright Scholar, will give a speech at Academia Sinica in December. He received his Ph.D. degree in Language and Literature (non-U.S.) at University of Pennsylvania. He is an a lecturer at Bryn Mawr College and receives several significant awards including: 1.) Doctoral Dissertation in the Eye of the Selector Ancient Style Prose Anthologies in Ming Dynasty China; 2.) Network Visualization of Ming Dynasty Anthologies; 3.) Chiang Ching-kuo Foundation Doctoral Fellowship ; 4.) Center for Chinese Studies Research Grant for Foreign Scholars in Chinese Studies; 5.) Benjamin Franklin Fellowship.
Lecture Information:
Date: Wednesday, December 12
Time: 3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Venue: Conference Room #703, 7F, Research Building, Institute of History and Philology, Academia Sinica
Address: No. 130, Sec. 2, Academia Sinica Rd., Nangang District, Taipei (in Chinese: 台北市南港區研究院路二段130號:中央研究院史研所之研究大樓七樓703會議)
Lecture Topic: “Poetry and Mining in Colonial Taiwan ”
(*Speech in Chinese & Free Admission)

Abstract of Presentation: 
This paper discusses the relationship between classical Sinitic literary associations and colonial development projects in early twentieth-century Taiwan through a study of the Hoklo Taiwanese mining magnate Yan Yunnian (1874-1923) and his poetry. Early twentieth-century Taiwan witnessed a proliferation of civil society associations and publications devoted to the study and practice of classical Chinese literature, both poetry and prose. Previous scholarship has debated the relationship of this movement to the colonial government in Taiwan and the Empire of Japan, sometimes emphasizing its Chinese nationalist and anti-colonial character, other times presenting it as an attempt among leftover Qing dynasty elites to accommodate their preexisting high culture to new imperialist aims, intending thereby to retain their ruling class status even as colonial subjects. This paper’s analysis of Yan Yunnian’s 500+ published poems and his participation in poetry societies supports the latter view, arguing that the social capital generated by Yan’s poetry parties was in fact crucial to his organization of Taiwanese-Japanese joint stock mining companies. This paper also highlights the role of mountains in northeast Taiwan as objects of both mineral extraction and poetic composition, as well as the construction of simulated mountain landscapes—such as the Yan family garden in Keelung - as sites for both poetry parties and business meetings.

Please feel free to attend and share this information to your friends.


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