Street-naming and the Subjectivity of Taiwan: A Case Study of Taipei City
Taiwan has been ruled by a variety of political regimes and the different ruling elites have used Taiwan’s place names to shape their symbolic landscape. The end of World War Two witnessed the most tremendous change of place names in Taiwan when the Chinese Nationalist government or Kuomintang (KMT) established itself on the island. The traditional approach to toponymy mainly treats place names as the objective projection of culture on the physical landscape. However, recent research has turned to borrow concepts from critical theories to explore the expression of power inherent in geographical naming. This article will consider place naming as the illustration of state power on its symbolic landscape by examining all the street names in Taipei City, the capital of Taiwan.
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