Leveraging Cultural Exports for Resilience: Insights from Taiwan and South Korea

Written by Tommy Hall and Margaret Siu. Global discussions about Taiwan often focus on an invasion scenario, and many observers wonder if Taiwan is adequately preparing for war. These discussions often dissect Taiwan’s hard power—military and economic factors that may dissuade Beijing. However, soft power is crucial in conflicts between imbalanced parties. Current discussion would benefit from diversifying outside hard power calculations and examining Taiwan’s soft power. Taiwan should apply lessons from South Korea’s model to bolster its ability to co-opt global support. Describing Taiwan’s soft power vision and comparing both nations’ top-down cultural promotion efforts is helpful.

Epidemics, National Consciousness and the Existential Value of Taiwan

Written by Mary Wang. Reading Nobel Prize winner Albert Camus’ canonical novel, The Plague at the time of the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak led me to meditate on Taiwan’s current situation and the possibilities for its future. As the COVID-19 crisis has been unfolding, paralysing the whole globe, I found that Camus’ novel allows for meaningful comparison between the situation described in Camus’ short novel and the experience of Taiwan as an estranged member of the international community.