Taipei Ricci Institute: shifting its focus

by on Thursday, 04 March 2010 Comments

On January 30, the Taipei Ricci Institute has signed an agreement with Taiwan National Library creating a "Matteo Ricci - Pacific Studies Reading Room" within the premises of the library. At the same time, with the support of the library, the Council for Aboriginal Affairs and individual scholars, the TRI is working towards the creation of a "Taiwan Society for Pacific Studies" that will become its main research outlet and focus.

New research into language evolution suggests most Pacific populations originated in Taiwan around 5,200 years ago. The Austronesians arose in Taiwan around 5,200 years ago. Before entering the Philippines, they paused for around a thousand years, and then spread rapidly across the 7,000km from the Philippines to Polynesia in less than one thousand years. After settling in Fiji, Samoa and Tonga, the Austronesians paused again for another thousand years, before finally spreading further into Polynesia eventually reaching as far as New Zealand, Hawaii and Easter Island. This cultural and linguistic history opens up compelling perspectives on the globalization process and on the challenges that humankind confronts nowadays.

June LEE (李禮君)

Former Managing Editor of Renlai Monthly (2004-2009). Board member of the Taipei Ricci Institute.

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