Taiwan has been hailed as a successful case of democratization. Compared with many other nations, the transition from authoritarian rule occurred in a rather orderly fashion. Group consciousness emerged as a reaction to the decades-long suppression of cultural diversity under martial law as different social groups competed fiercely to exert their political subjectivity.
This volume is the first study to examine the politics of difference in Taiwan. It aims to go beyond ethnic identity as the sole concern for group boundary, to acknowledge the interests of other marginalized groups, and to look behind reified group boundaries in order to discover group differences as mediated social relations based on overlapping boundaries rather than exclusive opposition. In exploring the politics of difference among minority groups and the problems arising from their struggle over political recognition, the book challenges the assumptions that groups are ontologically given, that groups are internally homogenous, and that the particularistic identities have no overlap. The chapters offer a broad coverage of major social groups including ethnic minorities, recent migrants, gay and lesbian groups, and marginalized workers. They offer perspective analyses of the ongoing struggles by minority groups to overcome subordination.