Global Storytelling International Workshop

Narrating Childhoods in Taiwan

April 6–7, 2023

We believe that there is an uncanny power in childhood memories. And, childhood memories generate countless stories to be shared with people around the world. Creating an archive of such stories and sharing them has been the aim of Made in Taiwan (MiT), the project at the base of this interactive workshop. MiT is housed in the Center for Taiwan Studies, currently directed by Sabine Frühstück, and curated by Silke Werth, a CTS Research Fellow. MiT is at once a public oral history project, a global open access digital research hub, and an archive-database of childhood memories in Taiwan. MiT guides budding student ethnographers in collecting a panoramic range of memories of individuals from different biographical, ethnic, social, professional, cultural, and linguistic backgrounds who have one thing in common—they have grown up in Taiwan.

This workshop brings together student scholars in training with international experts and community members to engage in critical, collective reflections about ethnographic methods, qualitative inquiry, and stories of life in Taiwan. (List of Participants)

“Global Storytelling” is our collective answer to an urgent call for hands-on methodological training of the next generation of young scholars. Hailing from three different continents, they will come together at UC Santa Barbara to learn from and with each other in short presentations, roundtable discussions, methodological training sessions, and collective reflections.

Organized by Angela Borda, Li-Ting Chang, Sabine Frühstück, Beth Tsai, Silke Werth, and Beatrice Zani.

Co-sponsored by the Society for the History of Childhood and Youth, the East Asia Center, the departments of Asian American Studies, East Asian Languages & Cultural Studies, Film & Media Studies, and History, the Carsey-Wolf Center, as well as Interim Associate Vice Chancellor and Dean of Undergraduate Education Michael B. Miller.


Thursday, April 6, 2023

Loma Pelona Center Room 1108

9:30- 9:45 Welcome

9:45- 10:45 Keynote I: “The Lived Lives of the Global Supply Chain: Commodity Circulation, Migration, and Transnational Labour—Ethnographic Insights from Global Taiwan,” Beatrice Zani (McGill University)

10:45- 11:00 Coffee Break

11:00- 12:00 Breakout Workshops

For Educators: Pedagogical Tools for Teaching Ethnography
First, Daigengna Duoer (Religious Studies) introduces how to use ArcGis Story Maps in undergraduate classes to foster engagement and visualize storytelling with interactive mapping tools. Second, Silke Werth (UCSB and Westmont College) and Beatrice Zani demonstrate how they have incorporated the Made in Taiwan project into different types of courses.

For Student Ethnographers: Exchanging Experiences, Finding Patterns
Li-Ting Chang (EALCS and CTS) leads students through sharing the stories they collected and exchanging fieldwork experiences as preparation for the student round-table.

12:00- 1:30 Lunch

1:30- 3:00 Ethnographers in Training
A storytelling roundtable from students’ perspectives! Students from McGill University, Westmont College,and UC Santa Barbara who have contributed to the Made in Taiwan project and shared their interviews on the CTS website and the CTS Youtube channel tell these life stories focusing on childhood experiences. Student leaders share patterns and findings that emerged from the previous workshop discussions.

3:00- 3:30 Coffee Break

3:30- 4:30 Implementing the Global Storytelling Project in the Classroom: Perspectives from Educators and Students
This roundtable is devoted to discussing questions about implementing a global ethnography project in the classroom from both educators’ and students’ perspectives. All workshop participants are welcome to ask questions about how to use Made in Taiwan in undergraduate courses.

Multicultural Center

5:00 – 7:15 “American Girl” (2021)—Film Screening and Conversation with Director Feng-I Fiona Roan, moderated by Beth Tsai (EALCS and CTS)
Set in 2003 during the global SARS epidemic in Taiwan, “American Girl” is an autobiographical family drama that follows a 13-year-old girl who is uprooted from LA unexpectedly when her mother is diagnosed with breast cancer. As the protagonist fights to return to the US in the story, her superficial search for freedom elsewhere is actually a deep ache for belonging somewhere, somehow.

8:00 Dinner at Louie’s California Bistro, Upham Hotel (For workshop participants only.)

Friday, April 7, 2023

Loma Pelona Center Room 1108

10:00- 11:00 Keynote II: “Noise, Silence and Unmoored Boundaries in Taiwanese Funerals,” Robert Weller (Boston University)

11:00- 11:15 Coffee Break

11:15- 12:30 Asking Strong Questions, Elevating Ethnographic Storytelling
In the first part of this workshop, Phung Su, President’s Postdoctoral Fellow at UC San Diego, introduces the power of storytelling as a key form of ethnographic research. Then, participants work in small groups, thinking through and rephrasing questions to encourage open and engaged storytelling between undergraduate students and adults of any age who grew up in Taiwan, and dissecting the ways we ask questions in order to develop ethical conversations with a purpose.

12:30- 2:00 Lunch

2:00- 3:15 Transpacific Studies in Action
Experts of global storytelling, including Lara Momesso (University of Central Lancaster), Helen Hess (University of Zürich), Brigit Knüsel-Adamec (University of Zürich and University of Bern), and Phung Su (UCSD) report from the field, describing their research in and about Taiwan within the country’s Asian context. Suma Ikeuchi (EALCS) moderates.

3:15- 3:30 Coffee Break

3:30- 4:30 Localizing Transnational Communities
In this roundtable discussion representatives of the community of Taiwanese in the US share their insights of both their memories of growing up in Taiwan and ways Taiwanese culture has taken root in California. Participants include Wen Chien, founder of the Lead with Purpose Foundation, Charles Yang, representative of TAH, Deana Chuang of NATWA, and Mayfair Yang, chair of East Asian Languages & Cultural Studies.

4:30- 5:00 The Future of Global Storytelling
Sabine Frühstück leads a brainstorming session about the future of global storytelling and the possibilities of expanding the Made in Taiwan project.

5:00- 5:45 Concluding Remarks and Award Ceremony for CTS Best Interview Award

7:00 Dinner TBD (For workshop participants only.)