Festival, seminar highlight significance of the Hakka in history

The Pingzhen Battle sport day of Yi-Wei Hakka War Cultural Festival and the “30 Years of Taiwanese Hakka Movement and Development Seminar” were held in Taoyuan on June 9 to pass on Hakka spirit.  

At the opening ceremony of the Pingzhen Battle sport day, Hakka Affairs Council Minister Lee Yung-de (李永得) noted that the Hakka played a significant role by forming a militia to protect Taiwan from Japanese invasion during the Yi-Wei War (乙未戰爭) in 1895. To fight against the Japanese armed force, Taiwanese people, the Hakka, and indigenous people teamed up for the first time in history, making a great example of Hakka spirit as well as Taiwan spirit.

The Yi-Wei Hakka War Cultural Festival, which is one of the 2018 Hakka Festivals selected by the Hakka Affairs Council, is to commemorate the Hakka men who sacrificed their lives defending Taiwan through presenting the history of the Yi-Wei War. This year, the festival launched a VR game for participants to learn about the war and Hakka spirit in the battle field recreated by VR technology.

In addition, the festival offered a guided tour to the war sites in Pingzhen District of Taoyuan for the public to gain a deeper understanding of the period of the history. The festival also invited local scholars to share stories of the war to the public.

Following the festival, Minister Lee attended the 30 Years of Taiwanese Hakka Movement and Development Seminar held by the National Central University to gain more experiences for developing Hakka culture.

Minister Lee noted that the Hakka movement played a key role in the democratization of Taiwan, leading the Hakka to build identity as well as raise Hakka awareness. He hoped that the seminar can help take the Hakka to the next stage through reviewing the development in the past three decades and exploring the current situation.

Hosted by Li Qiao (李喬), a representative writer of Hakka literature, the seminar invited professors Chiu Rong-ju (邱榮舉), Lo Zhao-jin (羅肇錦), and Lin Yi-xiong (林一雄) to share their research studies and explore the current Hakka development. The seminar ended with the discussion on the future prospect of the youth Hakka.