Linguistics and Literature Studies Vol. 6(1), pp. 12 - 16
DOI: 10.13189/lls.2018.060102
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Beaver Fur and Deer Skin: Teaching Colonial American Literature in Taiwan's Context

Ya-Shu Chen *
Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures, Chung Hua University, Taiwan


English majors in Taiwan mostly are not familiar with American literature, let along American literature in the colonial times. However, should one compare the colonial history of Taiwan in the Age of Exploration with that of America in the similar era by the Dutch, students are more willing to participate in class discussion, their learning attitude has changed from passive to more active, and the result is therefore more rewarding too. The main reason of such a result lies in that, in my opinion, both colonial histories of Taiwan and US are alike, that is, both were discovered by Europeans in the Age of Exploration, and there are similarities between the colonization processes in Tainan, Taiwan, and several Dutch colonies along the east coast of America. The two colonial powers used trade as a means, exchanging mink and deerskin with native Aborigines respectively and eventually led to the abolition of the two indigenous peoples. This study aims at exploring similarities and differences between Taiwan and US colonial histories through examining their colonization processes in detail. I hope that from such a comparison, putting colonial American literature in the context of colonial Taiwan, American literary history may become more interesting to Taiwan Students.

Colonial Literature, Age of Exploration, Trade, Dutch

Cite this paper
Ya-Shu Chen (2018). Beaver Fur and Deer Skin: Teaching Colonial American Literature in Taiwan's Context. Linguistics and Literature Studies, 6 , 12 - 16. doi: 10.13189/lls.2018.060102.