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How to Make Hard Choices Eye on China
  • Ruth Chang

    Ruth Chang

    Chang is a Rutgers University Philosophy Professor and popular TED talk speaker.

Tune into Eye on China as Natalie Tso interviews Chinese American Philosophy Professor Ruth Chang about her 5-step approach to making hard decisions.


Chang's TED talk How to Make Hard Choices has been viewed nearly 3 million times in the past 6 months. She provides an empowering perspective on how to define ourselves through our choices. 

Boba life in Los Angeles

How has Taiwan's national drink, boba tea (aka bubble tea, pearl milk tea), become an integral part of Asian-American culture in Los Angeles?


Tune into Taiwan Today as Natalie Tso speaks with LA Weekly food writer Clarrisa Wei


A new era of US-China ties

How will US-China ties change with US Donald Trump's administration? Tune into Eye on China as Natalie Tso speaks with Bill Stanton, the director of the Center for Asia Policy at Taiwan's Tsinghua University and the former director of the de facto US embassy in Taiwan, the American Institute of Taiwan. 


Cross-strait long distance relationship ep.III

In this episode, we'll continue to explore the topic of cross-strait long distance relationship with our guests. Let's hear from them on the unique challenges and hurdles that they have to overcome. 


The filming

Shirley Lin had a stint at acting on Jukebox Republic, with songs about actors and extras.


Wooden chicken

Tune into Classic Shorts to hear the story and idioms behind the phrase "wooden chicken". 


Classic idioms of the week:


木雞養到 (mù jī yǎng dào) or "wooden chicken raised end" means to be fully trained or at the top of one's field. 


呆若木雞  (dāi ruò mù jī) or "dumb like wooden chicken" means someone who looks dumbfounded. 


Musee Wu of A&M Creative

Tune in to In the Spotlight to hear Musee Wu, founder of A&M Creative, talk about her creative major/minor in college to get to where she is today.


The Taipei Guest House

Hidden away in plain sight is a piece of Versailles in Taipei. Through most of the year, it’s kept guarded behind stone walls, visible over the top to passersby but otherwise drawing little attention to itself. Once a month, though, this palatial building opens its doors to the public, letting people in to explore its luxurious interiors and fine garden. This is the Taipei Guest House, home to foreign dignitaries on their visits to Taipei. But as the rich woodwork and gold leaf inside suggests, this was originally built with an even greater vision in mind: to be a place worthy of hosting aristocrats and royalty. Once, around a century ago, it did just that.


Friendship in Chinese culture

Who are those friends that will have a positive impact on us? What kind of people  that we probably should not hang out with? Also, why is plain water used to describe friendship between men of integrity in the Analects? 


The Rixing Type Foundry

For close to 50 years, Chang Chieh-kuan has come in to work and entered into a world of wooden shelves. Along each of these shelves are countless slots, each of which is stacked with tiny metal pieces. On each of these metal pieces is inscribed a single Chinese character. This is movable type, ready for the printing press. This may be something many of us associate with Gutenberg and Europe, but Chinese-speakers have been using this technology for much longer. Here in Mr. Chang’s workshop, that heritage still hangs on.

Mr. Chang is the owner of the Rixing Type Foundry, the last of its kind in Taiwan. While the rest of the type foundries here have long since shuttered, Mr. Chang has held on. After going through financial hardship, he’s finding new ways to make the printed word relevant and save his old typefaces for the future. He’s taken a quick break from his work to join us today for a look at what he does and how he is still pushing forward 50 years on.


Miss Asian America Stephanie Lin

Tune into Taiwan Today as Natalie Tso speaks with the first Taiwanese-American Miss Asian America Stephanie Lin about her year as Miss Asian America promoting women in STEM and her adventures helping endangered wildlife in Costa Rica and Thailand. 



Trump's nod on One China

Tune into Eye on China as Natalie Tso speaks with political commentator Ross Feignold about US President Donald Trump's recent phone call with Chinese President Xi Jinping and his confirmation of the US's One China principle. 


Stroke of Light ep.56: The State of Photography Education in Taiwan

In this episode, we revisit our past conversations with Taiwan's master photographers and discuss the state of photography education in Taiwan. 


Good Manners

Episode 38

Characters: Chinese teacher/American student/German student  


Good manners


大八: 老師,您覺得這個怎麼樣?

(Lǎoshī, nín juéde zhèige zěnmeyàng?)

Daba: Teacher, what do you think of this?


怡兒: 大八,你拿東西給老師,怎麼沒用雙手?

(Dàbā , nǐ ná dōngxi gěi lǎoshī, zěnme méi yòng shuāngshǒu?)

Yier: Daba, when you give something to the teacher, why aren’t you using both hands?


大八: 為什麼?那個東西不重啊?

(Wèishénme ? Nèige dōngxi búzhòng a ?)

Daba: Why?!? It’s not that heavy, is it?


怡兒: 不是重不重的問題,那是禮貌!

(Búshì zhòng búzhòngde wèntí, nà shì lǐmào!)

Yier: It isn’t about “heavy or not”, it’s a matter of courtesy!


老師: 嗯!怡兒很懂禮貌喔! 是誰教你的?

(En! Yír hěn dǒng lǐmào o ¡ Shì shéi jiāo nǐ de?)

Teacher: Hm! Yier really understands etiquette! Who taught you about that?


怡兒: 我的文化課。

(Wǒde wénhuà kè.)

Yier: I learned about it in my Chinese culture class.


老師: 文化課很重要!

(Wénhuà kè hěn zhòngyào!)

Teacher: The class on culture is quite important.


大八: 對師長,給或是收,都要用雙手。對其他人呢?

(Duì shīzhǎng, gěi huòshì shōu, dōu yào yòng shuāngshǒu. Duì qítā rén ne?)

Daba: So with teachers and the older generation, you use both hands to present or accept something. What about other people?


怡兒: 如果也用雙手,那是好風度。老師,對嗎?

(Rúguǒ yě yòng shuāngshǒu, nàshì hǎo fēngdù. Lǎoshī, duì ma?)

Yier: If you still use both hands, it’s good manners.Teacher, is that right?


老師: 對極了! 怡兒這麼懂事,難怪人人都喜歡她!

(Duì jíle! Yìr zhème dǒngshì, nánguài rénrén dōu xǐhuān tā!)

Teacher: Absolutely! Yier really understands the ways of the world. No wonder everybody likes her!


大八: 咦? 那是懂事還是懂禮貌?

(Yi? Nàshì dǒngshì háishì dǒng lǐmào?)

Daba: Huh? Is that “understanding the ways of the world” or “understanding etiquette”?


老師: 懂事的人,一定懂禮貌。

(Dóngshìde rén, yídìng dǒng lǐmào.)

Teacher: People who understand the ways of the world, of course also understand courtesy.


老師: 見到師長要問好,到別人家當客人,帶一點小禮物。禮多人不怪嘛!

(Jiàndào shīzhǎng yào wènhǎo, dào biérén jiā dāng kèrén, dài yìdiǎn xiǎo lǐwù. Lǐ duō rén búguài ma!)

When meeting teachers or members of the older generation, you must greet them. When visiting someone’s home, you must bring a small gift. Nobody would mind if you’re a little too polite!




1.雙手(shuāngshǒu) Both hands

2.重 (zhòng) Heavy

3.禮貌(lǐmào)  Courtesy, politeness, etiquette

4.對(duì)   To, towards

5.師長(shīzhǎng)Teachers and members of the older generation

6.收 (shōu) To receive, to accept

7.其他(qítā) Others

8.風度(fēngdù) Manners

9.懂 (dǒng) To understand

10.懂事(dǒngshì)To understand the ways of the world, to be sophisticated

11.見到(jiàndào)To meet, to encounter

12.問好(wènhǎo) To greet

13.當(dāng)To be or act as….

14.禮物(lǐwù) Gift, present

15.禮多人不怪(Lǐduō rén búguài) Nobody will object if you’re too polite.


Contemporary Taiwanese Zheng Music

The producer of this album is Lai Yi-chieh who got her MA in musicology from Taipei National University of Arts. In her performances, she pays special attention to the subtleties and tensions created through exploring the timber of the zheng instrument. Today, all things, according to the producer, including Taiwanese zheng music, are the inevitable outcome of what came before and the transformation of today’s contemporary zheng is the continuation of a living tradition.


Boy or girl?

Learn from John Van Trieste and Shirley Lin on Status Update as they talk about the things that Taiwanese people believe from following the Chinese almanac, such as whether you're going to have a boy or girl depending on the lunar month one's pregnancy begins.


Cross-strait long distance relationship ep.II

In this episode, we'll continue to explore the topic of cross-strait long distance relationship with our guests. Let's hear from them on the unique challenges and hurdles that they have to overcome. 


Take a walk

Shirley Lin talks about her long walks with her husband along Xindian River through pop songs on Jukebox Republic.


The golden hen

Tune into Classic Shorts as Natalie Tso presents the story of the hen that laid golden eggs. 


Classic idiom of the week - 殺雞取卵 (shā jī qǔ luǎn)or "kill chicken get eggs". It means being too greedy and making a greedy move that ends up in greater loss. 


The Jing-Mei Human Rights Memorial and Cultural Park

On February 28 seventy years ago, the most traumatic period in Taiwan’s history began. Resentment against Taiwan’s new KMT government exploded in the streets. The government’s violent response shook a generation of people and left a scar that still runs beneath Taiwanese society today. But the events of February 28, 1947 were only the beginning. A campaign of repression and murder called the White Terror period began, and it didn’t let up. In 1949, Taiwan was put under martial law, a situation that continued into the 1980’s.

There are plenty of peace memorials around Taiwan remembering the victims of this period, but a trip to the place where many of them were actually held hits you with the hard realities of these years in a way that visiting a peace memorial can’t. The Jing-Mei Human Rights Memorial and Cultural Park, site of a former detention center in Taipei, has been kept largely unchanged. You walk in and face the same claustrophobia and the same brutal concrete that those held here on political charges once did. The message is simple: the free and open society Taiwan enjoys today is not something to be taken for granted.


Lin Shih Pao

Lin Shih Pao, a Taiwanese artist based in New York, is probably best known for his "F1 car" made up of 24,000 recycled mobile phones. Hear his story on In the Spotlight.


Traditional or simplified?

Taiwan uses traditional Chinese characters and China has its own simplified version. Which one is better or aesthetically-pleasing to the eyes ? Find out more as we talk to one Taiwanese and one Chinese. 


Gift Boxes and New Year's decorations

In the run up to the Lunar New Year, many people in Taiwan rush to prepare. There are a lot of things that need to get done! Last week, we visited the famous Taipei New Year market at Dihua Street to get a taste of what goes into hosting a New Year’s get-together. With local bargain-hunter Dongshuai as our guide, we looked at the mountains of peanuts and pistachios gracious hosts buy for guests to munch on. This week, we’re looking at the New Year from the other side- what you, as a guest, should bring along with you when you’re invited over to join in the fun.

Fortunately, getting your hands on a nice gift these days is- well- convenient. That’s because the average person in Taiwan tends to do their gift-shopping at their nearest convenience store, where pre-packaged gift boxes are piled up by the window in a seasonal display. Choosing a good gift is a bit trickier though, so today, we’re following Dongshuai from the marketplace over to a nearby convenience store to get a bit of advice. Later on in the program, once we’re all sorted out, we’ll also tackle another issue- the most common type of New Year decoration and where to get it.


Story Slam: The Fight -- Curtis Starkey

A selection from the Story Slam event held at the Sappho Live Jazz bar in Taipei in January, where the theme for the month was "The Fight."

This week, hear the moving, sad and funny story of how a young man's restrictive religious upbringing forced him to maintain his burgeoning adult identity as a literal bag of secrets.



Studying in China

Tune into Eye on China as Natalie Tso speaks with Fulbright Scholar Hannah Fazio about her experience studying abroad in China throughout her childhood. 


Stroke of Light ep.55: Chen Yu-chen -- The Fall, the Crash, the Series

In this episode of Stroke of Light, we explore the work of installation artist Chen Yu-chen, as he reflects on the cycle of mass production, exmaplified by Foxconn, and the people that gets sacrificed in the process. 


Friends from Afar

“EZ Chinese” is a special series on Chinese to Go, which is jointly produced by the Chinese Language Center of Wenzao Ursuline University of Languages and Radio Taiwan International.


Episode 37

Characters: Chinese teacher/ Taiwanese student/German student  


Friends from Afar


小六: 我朋友剛才寄電郵來,說他要來台灣玩。

(Wǒ péngyǒu gāngcái jì diànyóu lái, shuō tā yào lái Táiwān wán.)

Xaoliu: My friend just sent me an email saying he was coming to Taiwan.


大八: 他要來多久?

(Tā yào lái duōjiǔ?)

Daba: How long does he want to stay?


小六: 他有工作,只能來一個禮拜。

(Tā yǒu gōngzuò, zhǐ néng lái yíge lǐbài.

Xaoliu: He has to work, so he can only stay a week.


老師: 他想來學校參觀嗎?

(Tā xiǎng lái xuéxiào cānguān ma?)

Teacher: Does he want to visit our school?



(Tā hěn xiǎng lái kànkan, kěshì bùzhīdào kěyǐ bùkěyǐ?)

Xaoliu: He would really like to, but doesn’t know if he can.


老師: 當然歡迎! [有朋自遠方來,不亦樂乎!] 台灣是很好客的。

(Dāngrán huānyíng! “Yóu péng zì yuǎnfāng lái, bú yì lè hū!” Táiwān shì hěn hàokè de.

Teacher: Of course! He’d be welcome! “You peng zi yuanfang lai, bu yi le hu!” Taiwan is very hospitable.


大八: 老師你剛才說什麼?我聽不懂。

(Lǎoshī nǐ gāngcái shuō shénme? Wǒ tīng bùdǒng.)

Daba: Teacher, I don’t understand what you just said.


老師: 那是孔子說的:[有朋友從很遠的地方來看你,那是最讓人高興的事了。]


(Nàshì Kǒngzǐ shuōde :” Yǒu péngyǒu cóng hěnyuǎnde dìfāng lái kàn nǐ, nàshì zuì rang rén gāoxìngde shì le.”)

Teacher: That’s one of Confucius’ sayings. “Friends from afar are a great happiness!”


大八: [好客]的意思,是喜歡接待客人嗎?

( “Hàokè “ de yìsi, shì xǐhuān jiēdài kèrén ma?)

Daba: Does “hao ke” mean “to enjoy greeting guests”?


老師: 對極了!只要你是客人,主人就會很高興接待你的。

(Duì jíle! Zhǐyào nǐ shì kèrén, zhǔrén jiù huì hěn gāoxìng jiēdài nǐ de.)

Teacher: Absolutely right! The host is always delighted to greet you as a guest.


小六: 我馬上告訴他,他一定高興極了!

(Wǒ mǎshàng gàosù tā, tā yídìng gāoxìng jíle!)

Xaoliu: I will tell him right away. He’ll be extremely happy!




1.寄(jì) To send, to mail

2.電郵 (diànyóu) Email

3.多久?(Duōjiǔ?)  How long?

4.禮拜 (lǐbài)  A week

5.參觀(cānguān) To visit

6.好客(hàokè) To be hospitable

7.孔子(Kǒngzǐ) Confucius

8.意思(yìsi) Meaning

9.接待(jiēdài) To greet, to receive

10.客人(kèrén) Guest

11.主人(zhǔrén) Host

12.告訴(gàosù) To tell, to inform


Zheng music by Wang Zhongshan

Wang Zhongshan is a famous guzheng soloist born in Henan, China. He is now teaching at the Conservatory of Music in Beijing. The music Jade Bells and Bamboo Pipes features this week includes Zheng Concerto for Lady Meng Jiang, one of China’s four Great Folktales about Lady Meng Jiang or Meng Jiang Nü whose husband, Fan Qiliang was conscripted by Emperor Qin Shi Huang to build the Great Wall against the northern enemy on their wedding day. After the departure, Lady Meng Jiang heard no news from her husband and decided to go to the Great Wall to find him. To her disappointment, her husband had already died. She wept and there was a storm that made part of the Great Wall collapse. There she found the dead body of her husband and she then went to the sea to kill herself.


Is this your lucky year?

John Van Trieste and Shirley Lin begin this week on Status Update to talk about the first three of ten things that you can learn from a Chinese New Year almanac to find out if this is your lucky year.


Cross-strait long-distance relationship ep.I

In this episode, we'll explore the topic of cross-strait long distance relationship with our guests. Let's hear from them on the unique challenges and hurdles that they have to overcome. 



Shirley Lin talks about her daughter's first Lunar New Year homecoming since leaving Taiwan to work in Shanghai, with songs about "coming home" on Jukebox Republic. 


Taipei's Old Railway Bureau

Just by Taipei’s old North Gate, a long stretch of thin metal barriers hides a historic beauty being turned into Taipei’s next museum. Walk around to the front and you can get a peak at it. This handsome old building was once the railway bureau headquarters, nerve center of Taiwan’s rail network during a critical point in its development. Today, as trains regularly circle Taiwan, it is a reminder of the era that set the island in motion. This is being turned into museum devoted, as you might expect, to Taiwan’s rail history. It’s the brainchild of the National Taiwan Museum. It isn’t set to open until 2019, but since we've had a peak at the front, we might as well get a peak at the history the new museum will be celebrating. The National Taiwan Museum’s Lin Yi-hung is with us today to tell us about the network of trains that once ran from this building and the impact the railroad has had on Taiwan.


Photographer Sean Marc Lee

Tune in to In the Spotlight to learn exactly what kind of photography is Sean Marc Lee, a full time freelance photographer in Taiwan, good at.


The Dihua Street New Year's Market

Chinese New Year is the ultimate time for feasting and getting together with friends. That means lots of socializing and entertaining. Even for a small get-together, a gracious host in Taiwan will have a lot of stockpiling to do this time of year. Fortunately, it’s easy to do. In the weeks running up the New Year, seasonal markets pop up overnight- outdoor one-stop-shops with all the essentials for making another memorable holiday. One of the most famous New Year’s markets of all opens every year on Dihua Street, located in one of Taipei’s most historic and traditional neighborhoods. But what do shoppers here buy when they’re expecting guests? On a rainy night shortly after it opened this year, I went to the Dihua Street market with friend and bargain hunter Dongshuai to find out.


Stroke of Light ep.54: Oscar Villamiel -- Unchanging Ever Changing

In this episode of Stroke of Light, we travel to Mind Set Art Centre to explroe the work of Oscar Villamiel, an Filipino multi-media artist who's made a series of art installations using bird features that he collected over a period of a few years. 


Snacking in the Night Market

“EZ Chinese” is a special series on Chinese to Go, which is jointly produced by the Chinese Language Center of Wenzao Ursuline University of Languages and Radio Taiwan International.


Episode 36

Characters: Korean student / Taiwanese student/Japanese student  


Snacking in the night market


小六: 誰要跟我去附近夜市吃小吃?

(Shéi yào gēn wǒ qù fùjìn yèshì chī xiǎochī?)

Xiaoliu: Who wants to go with me to the neighborhood night market for a snack?


久玲: 我跟你去,夜市好玩、小吃好吃。

(Wǒ gēn nǐ qù, yèshì hǎowán, xiǎochī hǎochī.)

Jiuling: I’ll go with you! Night markets are fun, and the snacks are tasty!


啟中: 台灣夜市賣的東西,是傳統的或是流行的? 吃的、用的都有嗎?

(Táiwān yèshì màide dōngxi, shì chuántǒngde huòshì liúxíngde? chīde, yòngde dōu yǒu ma?)

Qizhong: The things sold in Taiwan’s night markets, are they traditional or fashionable? Do they sell food, or things for daily use, or both?


小六: 現在的夜市,應有盡有。大一點的 夜市,吃的、玩的、穿的、用的什麼都有。

(Xiànzàide yèshì, yīngyǒu jìnyǒu. Dàyìdiǎnde yèshì, chide, wánde, chuānde, yòngde shénme dōuyǒu.)

Xiaoliu: Contemporary night markets have everything you might possibly want. The bigger night markets have food, games, clothes, items for daily use … everything!


啟中: 那跟韓國差不多,什麼都有,什麼都賣。

(Nà gēn Hánguó chàbùduō, shénme dōu yǒu, shénme dōu mài.)

Qizhong: That’s about like in Korea. You can buy anything!


久玲: 我有一次,去一個觀光夜市,有各國的美食。有印度、印尼、泰國 還有 越南。


(Wǒ yǒu yícì, qù yíge guānguāng yèshì, yǒu gèguóde měishí. Yǒu Yìndù,Yìnní,  Tàiguó háiyǒu Yuènán.)

Jiuling: Once I went to a tourists’ night market, and they had food from every country! There was Indian, Indonesian, Thai and Vietnamese food.


啟中: 那個我有興趣,你還記得是哪個夜市嗎?

(Nèige wǒ yǒu xìngqù, nǐ hái jìdé shì něige yèshì ma?)

Qizhong: I’m interested in THAT one! Do you still remember which night market it was?


久玲: 我忘了,可是我可以打電話問我朋友。

(Wǒ wàngle, kěshì wǒ kěyǐ dǎ diànhuà wèn wǒ péngyǒu.)

Jiuling: I’ve forgotten, but I could call my friend and ask them


小六: 我現在好餓! 啟中,你決定要跟我們一起去了嗎?

(Wǒ xiànzài hǎo è! Qǐzhōng, nǐ juédìng yào gēn wǒmen yìqǐ qù le ma?) 

Xiaoliu: I’m pretty hungry now! Qizhong, have you decided if you want to go with us?



1.夜市(yèshì) Night market

2.小吃(xiǎochī) Snack

3.流行(Liúxíng) Popular

4.用的(Yòngde) Something for (daily) use

5.應有盡有(Yīngyǒu yìnyǒu) To have everything one might need

6.韓國(Hánguó) Korea

7.觀光(Guānguān) Tour; tourist

8.各國(gèguó) Every country

9.美食(měishí) Delicacies

10.印度(Yìndù) India, Indian

11.印尼(Yìnní) Indonesia, Indonesian

12.泰國(Tàiguó) Thailand, Thai

13.越南(Yuènán) Vietnam, Vietnamese

14.興趣 (xìngqù) Interest, interesting

15.記得(jìdé) To remember

16.打電話(dǎ diànhuà) To telephone

17.餓 (è) Hungry

18.決定(Juédìng) To decide


Zheng Music by Jiao Jinhai

Jiao Jinhai is a famous zheng player and composer in mainland China. He was born in 1939 and has conducted many performances overseas including in Canada, Singapore and the Philippines. Guzheng or zheng is a Chinese zither instrument belonging to the Chinese plucked string instrument and this instrument has a history of more than 2,500 years.


What are we feeling in the Lunar New Year?

Jake Chen joins John Van Trieste and Shirley Lin for a special episode of Status Update on the fifth week in January.


Everything's new in the New Year

Tune in to Jukebox Republic to hear what things are going to be "new" in the Lunar New Year.


Photo credit: http://bit.ly/2k6XytG


Red lanterns

Tune into Classic Shorts to hear the story of the revolutionary behind the Chinese New Year tradition of hanging red lanterns. 


Taiwanese Food: A History

Food. It’s Taiwan’s obsession. From the sweet flavors of the sugary south to the strong salt-and-pickle taste of Hakka mountain cooking, every inch of Taiwan seems covered in a robust food culture of some kind. Taiwanese food in all its forms has deep roots, and a new exhibit at the National Museum of Taiwan History traces the evolution of food here through history. The exhibit's English title- Nom Nom Taiwan: The Story of Dietary Culture has a playful ring to it. But as museum researcher Chang Ying-chih tells us today, the exhibit also has a serious message about waste, sustainability, and the future of Taiwan’s food.


Sean Marc Lee

Sean Marc Lee is from San Francisco and has been in Taiwan for 5 years. Hear his story on In the Spotlight on how he became a full time freelance photographer.


Getting a lucky start to the New Year

Chinese New Year is the time of year when many big temples are at their most packed. There are few other times when everyone seems to go visit the well-known temples all at once. Ensuring the gods’ blessings gets the New Year off to a good start, and it’s a part of the annual routine that many people couldn’t go without. But when they arrive at these temples, many people do more than just pray as they might during any other time of year.

There’s protection to gain and bad luck to avoid, and that takes some extra steps. Those who really want to ensure good luck may even have to battle for it. For people living in the Changhua area of central Taiwan, Nanyaogong Temple is a popular choice for ensuring a year of good luck. The temple’s Mr. Chen joins us by phone today to tell us about the ways temple-goers there ensure a prosperous New Year.


Fake News in Taiwan

Tune into Taiwan Today as Natalie Tso speaks with J Michael Cole, the founder of the new website Taiwan Sentinel, about his latest website and why Taiwan's media needs to be on guard for a disinformation campaign from China. 


A new age in US-China-Russia ties

How will US President Donald Trump change the dynamic between the US, China and Russia? And what does that mean for Taiwan? 


Tune into Eye on China as Natalie Tso speaks with Professor Alexander Huang, the director of the Institute of International Affairs and Strategic Studies at Tamkang University. 


Stroke of Light ep.53: Huang Zan-lun -- The Future that Never Comes

In this episode of Stroke of Light, we speak to installation artist, Mr. Huang Zan-lun. He uses a series of imagery from the Greek mythology to express his fear of the future. 


Travelling around the island

Episode 35
Characters: Taiwanese friend /French student/German student


Travelling Around the Island 


施思: 你發瘋啦!台灣不是歐洲,你要去哪裡做日光浴?
(Nǐ fāfēng la ! Táiwān búshì Ōuzhōu, nǐ yào qù nail zuò rìguāngyù?)
Shisi: You’re crazy! Taiwan is not Europe! Where do you want to go sunbathing?


大八: 南部的海邊,游泳、玩水、做日光浴,很自然啊!
(Nánbù de hǎibiān, yóuyǒng, wánshuǐ, zuò rìguāngyù, hěn zìrán a!)
Daba: On the beaches down south. Swimming, playing in the water, sunbathing…. So natural!


武三: 哈哈!你去你去,一定會有很多人不看山、不玩水,只看你!
(Hāha! Nǐqù nǐqù, yídìng huì yǒu hěnduō rén búkànshān, bù wánshuǐ, zhǐ kànnǐ!)
Wusan: Ha ha! Go ahead and go! There will certainly be a lot of people who won’t be looking at the mountains or playing in the water. They’ll be looking at you!


施思: 台灣人愛看熱鬧,到時候一定是人山人海。
(Táiwānrén ài kànrènào, dàoshíhòu yídìng shì rénshān rénhǎi.)
Shisi: Taiwanese like watching a scene, so there’ll be a huge crowd there.


大八: 你們都想太多了,誰要看穿泳衣的男生啊!
(Nǐmen dōu xiǎng táiduōle, shuí yào kàn chuān yǒngyī de nánshēng a!)
Daba: You all think too much. Who wants to look at a guy wearing a swim suit?


武三: 哈!我還以為你要去海邊,做不穿衣服的日光浴呢!
(Ha! Wǒ hái yǐwéi nǐ yào qù hǎibiān, zuò bùchuān yīfú de rìguāngyù ne!)
Wusan: Ha! I thought you wanted to go to the beach for nude sunbathing!


施思: 說真的,台灣有好幾個國際大城市,可是人的想法還是很傳統的。
(Shuō zhēnde, Táiwān yǒu hǎojǐge guójì dàchéngshì, kěshì rénde xiǎngfǎ háishì hěn chuántǒng de.)
Shisi: To be honest, Taiwan has quite a few international-style cities, but the people are still pretty old-fashioned.


武三: 這十幾年來,台北改變了很多,你如果環島旅行,就會發現台北跟別的城市很不一樣的。
(Zhè shíjǐ nián lái, Táiběi gǎibiàn le hěnduō, nǐ rúguǒ huándǎo lǔxíng. jiùhuì fāxiàn Táiběi gēn biéde chéngshì hěn bùyíyàng de.)
Wusan: In recent decades, Taipei has changed a lot, so if you ever plan to tour around the island, you’ll discover that Taipei is very different from other cities in Taiwan.


施思: 台灣不大,如果有五天假日,就可以環島旅行了!
(Táiwān búdà, rúguǒ yǒu wǔtiān jiàrì, jiù kěyǐ huándǎo lǔxíng le!)
Shisi: Taiwan’s not so big, so if we get a five day holiday, we can travel all around the



1.發瘋 (fāfēng) Go crazy

2.日光浴 (rìguāngyù) Sunbathe (nude or not)

3.南部 (nánbù) The southern area

4.游泳(yóuyǒng) To swim, swimming

5.玩水(wánshuǐ) To play in the water

6.熱鬧(rènào) Hustle and bustle, activity

7.看熱鬧 (kàn rènào) To watch a scene

8.到時候(dàoshíhòu) At that time

9.人山人海 (Rénshān rénhǎi) Literally, “People mountain people sea.” A huge crowd

10.泳衣(yǒngyī) Swim suit

11.男生(nánshēng) A man, male

12.以為(yǐwéi) To have thought

13.衣服(yīfú) Clothing

14.說真的(shuō zhēnde) Honestly

15.國際(guójì) International

16.大城市(dàchéngshì) Major city

17.改變(gǎibiàn) Change, to change

18.環島(huándǎo) To travel around the island

19.旅行(lǔxíng) Travel, to travel

20.發現(fāxiàn) To discover


Lunar New Year’s Special Edition

Happy Lunar New Year! This coming Friday is Chinese New Year’s Eve and we officially enter into the year of the Rooster. The Rooster is the tenth in the 12 Chinese animal signs. And as you know, each year is related to an animal sign according to a 12-year cycle. The twelve animal signs are the rat, ox, tiger, rabbit, dragon, snake, horse, sheep, monkey, rooster, dog and pig.


And people born in the year 1933, 1945, 1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005, and this year 2017 belong to the Rooster. People born in the year of the Rooster are very hardworking, courageous and talented and they are usually quite confident in themselves, but sometimes they can be a bit arrogant.


As the 12 Chinese zodiac recurs every 12 years, your own animal sign will come around every 12 years when you are 24, 36, 48, etc. And according to the ancient superstition, when it is the year of your own animal sign, for example, if you were born in the year of the Rooster, you will have bad luck during this year but there are ways to avoid this bad luck, for example, wearing something red given by a relative such as socks, underwear,  bracelet, etc.


Announcing January winner

Wouldn't you want to know what is the most radically different thing that Taiwanese people are doing during Chinese New Year holiday? Join Shirley Lin and John Van Trieste on Status Update to find out, as well as to hear the announcement for the best FB commenter winner for the month of January.


How cold is it in Taipei?

Shirley Lin shares about her "cold" experiences since being back in Taipei, on Jukebox Republic.