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The following NMTL’s literary objects are categorized according to the “Cultural Heritage Preservation Act” as “Significant Antiquities.”

“Taiwan Literature and Arts League Headquarters” Plaque

On May 6, 1934 at the initiative of Zhang Shenqie, Lai Minghong, and other central region literary figures, the first all-Taiwan Literature and Arts Conference was opened in Taichung, after which the “Taiwan Literature and Arts League” was created. This plaque was recovered in 1997 by the son of Zhang’s third younger brother Zhang Huangyi, Zhang Shengyu, in Nantou and later donated to the Museum by Zhang Xiyu, a descendant of Zhang Shenqie. After sixty years that included the war, the February 28 Incident, the twists and turns of Zhang Shenqie’s life following his retirement from public life, the Nantou August 8 Floods, and the move of his family, that this plaque should be as good as new is truly amazing. The plaque of the League born in Taichung was buried in Nantou, and family members speculate that this might be because as Zhang Shenqie fled the February 28 Incident he remembered to carefully protect it, carrying it with him and sealing it up for safekeeping in the home of his third younger brother—and that’s how it survived.

”The Crane Room Draft Poetry pre-1895 Xuejiao Collection” /by Hong Qisheng

Hong Qisheng wrote innumerable poems during his lifetime. This three collections of his poetry are most representative of his work. The Xuejiao Collection covers the years 1886 to 1895 and includes 35 poems, including “Ballad of Xizhou” and “Eight Poems of Jinling.” Most of these poems represent the imagination of a Qing dynasty intellectual and poet and at the same time express his dissatisfaction with the late-Qing political situation. Subsequently, marked by the dividing line of Taiwan’s cession to Japan in 1895, the Pixi Collection covers the period from that year to 1905. During this time most of Hong’s poetry reflects the era as it describes the state of mind of a defeated population. The Crane Room Collection covers the years from 1906 to 1916 and here the poetry describes the various states of mind the author had as he faced the reality of Japanese rule in Taiwan. The most famous piece is his description of being forced to cut off his queue in “The Pain of Cutting Hair.” The titles “Xuejiao” and “Pixi” were words created by the author. Because of the peculiar usage of characters, most readers and specialists do not understand their meaning.

”The Crane Room Post-1894 Pixi Collection” /by Hong Qisheng

The Crane Room Collection / by Hong Qisheng

Songs and Famous Stories of Taiwan/ by Heishichi Hirasawa

Songs and Famous Stories of Taiwan is collection of over 200 songs, stories, and historical novels from early Taiwan. They are transcribed in Japanese katakana script with a Japanese translation and notes. The compiler, Heishichi (~Teito) Hirasawa, worked for the Japanese Governor-General Office in the Compilation Department, and commentators ranked him as the first Japanese researcher to collect Taiwan songs.This is the first record of songs collected in book form during the Japanese Occupation Period and is one of the important works in the history of Taiwan literature.

“The Model Village”/ by Yang Kui

Yang Kui (1906-1985) was from Xinhua, Tainan. He later moved to Taichung. Yang was an important era-spanning writer of Taiwan literature, devoting exhaustive efforts during his entire lifetime to literary and social movements.This object is a manuscript of his short story “The Model Village.” The manuscript is complete with five revisions made with different colored ink and was one of Yang’s three favorite works. This work is inspired with a socialist humanitarian spirit and is representative of Taiwan literature during the Japanese Occupation Period. Literary scholars regard it as an extension of Yang’s representative work “Paperboy,” and it has great Taiwan literary value.

Inscriptions of Famous People from Zhang Shenqie’s Walking Tour

Zhang Shenqie (1904-1965) was an important writer of the Japanese Occupation Period. During this time he actively participated in the literary, cultural, and social movements of the day and proposed the organization of the “Taiwan Literature and Art Workers Union.” This object dates from a walking tour made by Zhang Shenqie in 1924. Zhang set out from Taichung and asked those whom he visited along the way to inscribe a few words of encouragement. The goal of his walkabout was “to explore the hidden thoughts of the people, to study local customs.” In addition to a Seediq girl at the Wushe Primary School, other signers included Lin Xiantang, Zhuang Song, Su Fengshi, Wu Zongjing, Zhuang Runxin, Tu Xiangguo, Li Maoyan, Lai Yuruo, Zhou Guiyuan, Liu Minzhe, Lin Maosheng, and Shi Huanchang, some 12 local scholar gentry. This is an object with great literary value for the study of the Taiwan cultural and social movements during the Japanese Occupation Period.

Le Moulin Poetry Journal, No. 3  

Le Moulin Poetry Journal was the poetry journal published by the Moulin Poetry Society founded in 1933. In all, there were four issues of the journal. This issue is the only one so far found. Included in this issue are poems by Li Yecang (Li Zhangrui’s penname), Shui Yinping, and Lin Xiuer as well as Shui Yinping’s “The World of Junzaburō Nishiwaki” (essay), Li Yecan’s “Reflections” (essay), Liu Yuanqiao’s “Rouge and Lips” (short story), and Shui Yinsheng’s “Editor’s Potpourri.” This issue was originally held by Yang Chichang but prior to his death no one knew about it. It was only when family members and Professor Lü Xingchang were organizing Yang’s affairs after his death that they discovered the issue, which the family donated to the Museum.

1933, The New Taiwanese People's Newspaper

In August 2000 a Taiwan literature researcher, Toshio Nakajima, donated an original, partial run of The New Taiwanese People's Newspaper for 1933 to the Provisional Office of the National Center for Cultural Heritage that was preparing for the creation of the Taiwanese Literature Museum. This run, currently the only one known anywhere, is in excellent condition and is dated from early May to end November 1933. Some parts are missing but there are in all more than 150 numbers. This newspaper run has been met with great enthusiasm and provides material for the topic of Nativist Literature and the Taiwanese Vernacular Writing Controversy. Li Xianzhang, Gui Qiuxheng and Huang Shihui, who supported the movement, and Li Kefu, Qiu Chunrong, Lai Minghong, and Zhu Dianren, who opposed it, used the newspaper’s Chinese Literature and Arts column as their central battleground, revealing the language/writing dilemma faced in the 1930s by the Taiwan New Literature Movement.

New Literature Diary 1927

Liu Naou entitled his 1927 diary New Literature Diary. It was published in Tokyo by Shinchōsha and on the back the author marked “Taishō 16” In 1926 Liu travelled to Shanghai and from this time onward became a participant in the Japanese “New Sensualism” movement, translating contemporary Western works on art theory and advocating “soft porn” film. The diary is written in Japanese and has entries for almost every day. The content broadly covers reading notes, bibliographies, and remarks on interaction with literary friends. The unearthing of this diary allows us a picture of the late 1920s, the intellectual’s active in the New Literature New Wave movement, their day-to-day lives, and the state of literature at the time.

Cha̍p-hāng Kóan-kiàn / by Cai Peihuo

To facilitate the acquisition of learning among the common people, Cai Peihuo (1889-1920) in the 1920s actively promoted the Taiwanese enlightenment and cultural movement using the western alphabet. From the title of this book we can understand that the author proposed “Ten Items of Social Education,” so much needed by the Taiwanese people of the time, to inspire our country and our people. The book is divided into and explains ten main points. With a modern perspective, Cai talked about his ideas on religion, life, what was meant by the word “Taiwanese,” women, and civilization. His passion for these subjects comes through very clear.

Nanmeirakuen, vol. 4

The first volume of this eponymously titled journal of modern poetry was self-published in October 1929 by the 南溟樂園社 (Nanmeirakuensha or Southern Seas Paradise Society) under the editorship of its founder, Nanmeishijin TADA (多田南溟詩人; real name 多田利郎 [Toshiro TADA]). Formed during the spring of the Taiwan New Literature Movement, Nanmeirakuensha boasted a membership that included some of Taiwan’s most important colonial-era poets, including Kuo Shui-tan (郭水潭,1907-1995), Chen Chi-yun (陳奇雲, 1908-1940), Hsu Ching-chi (徐清吉, 1907-1982), Yang Tsan-ting (楊讚丁), and Wang Teng-shan (王登山, 1913-1982). This makes《南溟樂園》(Nanmeigeien) an invaluable resource for those researching the early years of this literary movement. Moreover, as most of the society’s members were creative writers from Taiwan’s southwestern salt region, this journal also provides a critical scholarly window into the lived experiences of colonial-era poets and authors living in this area of Taiwan. The contents of Nanmeirakuen vol. 4 focus primarily on literary (mostly poetic) works and society news. Included are new poems by Japanese authors Nanmeishijin TADA, Isonami NAKAMA (中間磯浪), and Satoru TAKESAKI (たけさき哲) as well as by Taiwan authors Kuo Shui-tan, Chen Chi-yun, Hsu Ching-chi, and Yang Tsan-ting. The present scarcity of surviving works by the latter three Taiwan authors further highlights the weighty significance of this volume. Furthermore, the society news section includes the society’s rules statement, membership fee structure, news on members and the society’s several branches, and publication information, making it an invaluable resource for those doing research on the society itself. The few copies of the society’s Nanmeirakuen and《南溟藝園》(Nanmeigeien or Southern Seas Art Garden) journals known to exist today make this item in NMTL’s collection all the more significant and valuable.