Once sidelined, Taiwan’s mixed-race children find new embrace

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Census/Demographics, Media Archive, Social Science on 2016-01-02 20:50Z by Steven

Once sidelined, Taiwan’s mixed-race children find new embrace

Christian Science Monitor

Ralph Jennings

As more Taiwanese men marry Southeast Asian women, the island nation is beginning to think of itself as multi-ethnic, in a distinct departure from the mainland. The change is supported by younger generations.

Taipei — Huang Hui-mei used to dread being asked about her racial heritage. The daughter of a Vietnamese mother and Taiwanese father, she knew that having Southeast Asian heritage was seen as a marker of low status in Taiwan.

But now, Hui-mei, a high school sophomore whose mother was driven by poverty to come to Taiwan, is finding that people are more curious – in a good way – about her background.

Taiwanese are increasingly thinking of themselves as a multi-ethnic society – a concept that is reshaping Taiwan’s story of its basic identity. That has larger significance now as a generation of younger Taiwanese move to more clearly distinguish their island and its culture from that of political rival, China…

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