Différences culturelles entre taiwan et la chine
III. The link between China and Taiwan: the vision of Taiwanese people A. The Taiwanese culture is based on ancestry and culture. B. Differences between Chinese and Taiwanese reinforce that Taiwanese identity is distinct and original.
A. Ancestry and Culture
With the question: « Are you Chinese or Taiwanese? », my friends often formulate an answer that reveals two aspects.
They always respond that they are Taiwanese, and then concede that although their ancestors were Chinese it was a long time ago and it doesn’t matter today and even the position of Taiwan in the world is not easy, the truth of their politic independence can be clearly seen.
The language is an important element and occured several times in my interviews
One of their points was that the United States and Canada or Spain and most countries in South America speak the same language but they are not the same nation.
It is true that when we are not familiar with a culture, we tend to think immediately of the language to define it. However I remind you that Mandarin is the “official” language of Taiwan and its teaching is compulsory and has been imposed by the government. Because of this, some Taiwanese are now rejecting it.
One of my friends said: “it doesn't have to be Mandarin, because we are Taiwanese” and adds: “we cannot define a country by its language”
For example, the teacher I had, told us that she uses Mandarin when she gives orders to her students but uses Taiwanese with her colleagues. Taiwanese is used to invoke a more personal and intimate register. For my friends, Taiwanese is a language which is less superficial and