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Colonial history

A short trip to Taiwan’s “Windy City”

After a chaotic business meeting in Taoyuan and a very enjoyable visit to a foreign friend in Zhubei, on the evening of October 28th,...

An election campaign with a very Taiwanese touch

Since 2014, local elections in Taiwan have been unified to a single vote, typically in November, held once every four years. So, on November 26th,...

My father witnessed the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II

The House of Windsor is a British dynasty originally called Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, after a duchy in Thuringia, in the heart of Germany, from where...

Jean-Bédel Bokassa, Commander-in-Chief, President and Emperor

Jean-Bédel Bokassa, from 1966 to 1976 second president of the Central African Republic (CAR) and self-styled ruler Bokassa I of the Central African Empire from...

The forgotten Indian mutiny of 1946

A short, but critical event that hastened the end of British colonial rule on the Indian subcontinent took place on February 18th, 1946: the...

Sanmao, the Taiwanese author shaped by a Spanish colony

Taiwanese travel writer and translator Sanmao (Three Hairs), who in 1976 became famous with the autobiographical account Stories of the Sahara, committed suicide in...

The controversy about Retrocession Day on October 25th, 1945

After the First Sino-Japanese War in 1894/95, by signing the Treaty of Shimonoseki on April 17th, 1895, China was originally forced to concede Taiwan...

European barbarianism in China: ruining the Old Summer Palace

The Second Opium War (October 8th, 1856-October 24th, 1860) was successfully fought by the British and the French Empire against Imperial China to compel...

Former “Free China” developing a distinct Taiwanese identity

Taiwan, according to the current Constitution still called the "Republic of China", was baptized "Formosa" by some Portuguese sailors which never went ashore and...

The Battle of Dakar, an embarrassing defeat for de Gaulle

After their devastating surprise attack on the unprepared French Navy anchored in Mers-el-Kébir near Oran on July 3rd, 1940, for September 23rd of that...

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