Precondition for emergence of Taiwanese identity, its relation to China and critique of modernist approach

2021 Humanities science current issues  
This article focuses on analysing the unique preconditions that lead to the emergence of unique Taiwanese identity. At the same time, author identifies some flaws of the modernist approach towards research of nationalism. While not denying the importance of the modernist school, the author points out that the premodern era is not a tabula rasa, and there should be certain pre-conditions that allow modern nations to be formed. This paper argues that one such condition is a sense of commonality,
more » ... hich is developed within a group of people living on the same territory and under the influence of the same common factors. The Taiwan example shows that people tend to develop a sense of commonality based on their shared experience of interacting with the environment. Moreover, at the same time, the author is denying primordialist argument. This paper states that a sense of commonality is not permanent and is constantly changing -even though the majority of Taiwan's population are immigrants from mainland China, they feel less and less commonality with the Chinese population. As long as they live on different soil, they have different experiences in terms of interacting with the environment, and they eventually begin to evolve differently as well. The problem of self-identification of certain populations should be regarded through all the continuity of shared experiences that they have obtained. The main factors regarded in this paper are ethnic composition that changes drastically due to inter marriages, religious practices that begin to change their characteristics under new environments, and languages that begin to sound differently by absorbing more words from other languages. As the result, people who share the same ancestry will enter into the so-called modern era under very different conditions, and therefore will end up adopting almost diametrically opposite political systems. This paper sets out to prove that the democratic system adopted in Taiwan is a direct reflection of the collective experiences of the people that inhabit this island.
doi:10.24919/2308-4863/44-1-4 fatcat:3ecr64ucwjbkhjj5v3lvmviuuy