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Academic Paper

Title: Language and Ethnic Identity in Taiwan
Paper URL:
Author: Wi-vun Taiffalo Chiung
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: National Cheng Kung University
Linguistic Field: Anthropological Linguistics
Subject Language: Chinese, Min Nan
Abstract: Taiwan is a multilingual and multicultural society. There are currently four basic ethnic groups: indigenous people (1.7% of the population), Hakka (12%), Holo (73.3%), and Mainlanders (13%). Unlike the first three groups, which have resided in Taiwan for hundreds of years, Mainlanders are the latest immigrant group which moved to Taiwan with the Chinese KMT regime in the 1940s. Under KTMs monolingual policy, the foreign Mandarin language was adopted as the official language of Taiwan in 1945. This paper examines the relationships among three characteristics, i.e. mother tongue, language ability, and ethnic identity among the Hakka, Holo, and Mainlanders. An investigation was conducted with a total of 244 students with different ethnic backgrounds from Tamkang and Tamsui Universities in Taiwan. The subjects mother tongue, language ability, and ethnic identity were determined by their self-reports on a survey. The results of chi-square tests show that there are significantly different relationship patterns on the three characteristics among the Hakka, Holo, and Mainlanders categories.
Type: Individual Paper
Status: Completed

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