IJSSH 2015 Vol.5(3): 265-271 ISSN: 2010-3646
DOI: 10.7763/IJSSH.2015.V5.465

Re-Constructed Unitary History on Green Island, Taiwan: The Former Political Prison/Oasis Villa

H. W. Lin
Abstract—Former sites of torture and imprisonment converted to prison museums play an important role in forming the testimony underlying the history and national identity of Taiwan’s contested past. Oasis Villa, an extension of the existing New Life Correction Centre on Green Island, was also known as the Green Island Disciplinary Education Prison. Political prisoners who opposed the ruling government were imprisoned here, and it was a final destination for victims transported from prisons in Taiwan during the period of Martial Law. This paper examines the reconstructed history as represented by museum exhibition. This produces an ambivalent memory of, and one-sided perspective on, the experiences of the surviving victims. This paper analyses the history as reconstructed from the memory of a single source, and this depicts a partial picture of the prison through interpretations that form museum exhibitions that anesthetise the former site of punishment and incarceration. These findings reveal a past ignored by the binary oppositions of living memory which constitutes the difficult past and its transformation. This research also discusses the representation and interpretation of the political prison as it is transformed to the Green Island Human Rights Cultural Park, and its role in the modern society of Taiwan.

Index Terms—Political prison, martial law, representation, museum.

H. W. Lin is with the National Cheng Kung University, Taiwan (e-mail: hwlin@ mail.ncku.edu.tw).

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Cite: H. W. Lin, " Re-Constructed Unitary History on Green Island, Taiwan: The Former Political Prison/Oasis Villa," International Journal of Social Science and Humanity vol. 5, no. 3, pp. 265-271, 2015.

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