EVA Air Flight Attendants Strike

A strike by EVA Air flight attendants is the longest in Taiwan’s aviation history. But why, unlike a strike of China Airlines flight attendants led by the same union three years ago in which the airline met all of their demands, is this labor gambit likely to come up short?

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In late June, EVA Air announced that it was canceling another 400 flights in early July due to a strike by its flight attendants. …


Taiwanese pop diva Jolin Tsai once obsessed over everything said about her and her love ballads, but she has since matured and is now more confident, to the point of taking on such social issues as gender equality.

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From CommonWealth Magazine (vol. )

One way or another, Jolin Tsai always ends up surprising people.

The Mnet Asian Music Awards (MAMA), organized annually by a major South Korean entertainment company and staged in Hong Kong in December 2015, was no exception.

Before receiving her award for Best Asian Artist in 2015, Tsai appeared on stage in…


These women are transforming the tattoo industry, and they’re reeducating the public about what tattoos mean.

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“Your left shoulder is two centimeters higher than the right,” says Li-ssu Liao (廖力司) as her hands straightened the reporter’s shoulders. Her eyes rove over the body like a finely-tuned radar. “That’s right, exactly two centimeters. Any more and you run the risk of scoliosis, according to doctors.”

Her tone is careful, precise, even stolid. She walks as quietly as a cat. Were it not for the tattoos covering her back, you’d be forgiven for thinking Liao was some type of physical or psychological therapist.


Wan-Chun Alex Ma

Google software engineer, born in 1978.
Doctor of Philosophy, Department of Computer Science & Information Engineering, National Taiwan University. Developed “facial appearance capture method” with team from the University of Southern California. Won the Scientific and Technical Achievement Award at the 91st Academy Awards this year.

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Alex Ma is forty years of age. He hides a piercing stare beneath his busy eyebrows. Dressed in jeans and a plaid shirt, he looks every bit like a bookish graduate student. We compare the years on our diplomas; in an instant, he smilingly acknowledges me as his senior. His…


Taiwan Knows Food

One can easily witness the country’s devotion to gastronomy and tradition with an evening stroll through the capital’s high-spirited night markets.

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Taiwan’s food traditions are a defining characteristic of its culture. In addition to Taipei’s high-class Michelin-starred restaurants, one can easily witness the country’s devotion to gastronomy and tradition with an evening stroll through the capital’s high-spirited night markets.

A long-practiced tradition, the minute the sun goes down, shop vendors, including local families with generations-old recipes, pop up and line the streets with every kind of food imaginable. …


After the Protest

Angered by an extradition bill that would compromise Hong Kong’s rule of law and bring it further under Beijing’s domination, millions of the former British colony’s residents have stood up in defiance. CommonWealth reporters were on the scene, and saw the determination that has turned Hong Kong into China’s most troublesome frontier and hardened attitudes against Beijing. What does the future hold?

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Hong Kong. A city of nearly 7 million people bordering China, recognized as a world financial center, now a fierce battleground between the China Model and Western values.

Just one week after an already…


Showdown Between the Locusts and the Lackeys

Twenty-two years after the British colony of Hong Kong reverted to Chinese rule, there is hardly any love left between the Hong Kong people and their compatriots in the motherland. The territory is moving closer to the breaking point over self-identity.

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From CommonWealth Magazine (vol. )

“Hey, watch out, don’t touch that,” Zyu Cui-ping blurts out to warn her friend against grabbing the handrail in the subway carriage because someone has stuck discarded chewing gum onto it. “That must have been a hinterlander, it’s so low class,” she sighs.

Hinterlander or “neidiren” is the term…


Taiwanese writer Lu Ping, who served for seven years as director of the Kwang Hwa Information and Culture Center, Taiwan’s cultural window in Hong Kong, comments on the former British colony’s first female chief executive.

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From CommonWealth Magazine (vol. )

The original article is published in March, 2017.

During the election campaign of Hong Kong’s new chief executive, one would often hear the word “divide”, as Hong Kong society is truly a split society now. Carrie Lam is the new chief executive. …


The Reiwa Era’s First Hot Trend

Twenty years of hard work has earned the famous Taiwanese “bubble tea” a place in Japan’s highly competitive catering market. It’s now on its way to become the island nation’s favorite beverage.

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Inside Shinjuku Station, one of the busiest railway hubs in Tokyo, as many as fifteen hand-shaken beverage shops vie for customers’ attention. Taiwan’s cold drink mania has invaded Japan.

“Average wait time: 6 hours.” A security guard holds up this warning sign in front of a popular shopping mall. Enthusiastic customers become crestfallen as reality sinks in. They’re late to the party.

It’s just…


Chasing Sweetness

Wondering where to go during the hot summer months? Consider visiting one of Taiwan’s growing regions to experience the sweet fun of fruit picking. This season, delight your tastebuds with plump and chewy lychee, the bright red meat of dragon fruit, plump orange mangoes, and sweet, juicy watermelon while enriching your love of travel.

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Taiwan has earned a reputation as a fruit kingdom. Not only are countless varieties of delicious, sweet fruit available year-round, but the pure fun of picking seasonal fruit right off the tree or vine is like nothing else. …

CommonWealth Magazine

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