Recently, the national Hakka cultural and economic summit was held at Taipei’s Hakka Cultural Park, by the Cross-Strait Hakka Cultural and Economic Association. Among those who attended were former Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) chairman Wu Poh-hsiung, Hakka Affairs Council Deputy Minister Lee Chao-ming, and China Review News Editor in Chief, Guo Wei-feng.
Hakka are an ethnicity of people who make up about 20% of the population in Taiwan. With that being said, many attendees of the summit called for more cultural preservation through several methods. Poh-hsiung “encouraged Hakka people to let their voice be heard by harnessing the power of social media.” Language, an important aspect of culture, is also important in preserving Hakka tradition. Huang, the former chairman of the Central News Agency, claims that the revitalization of the Hakka language is important [because] if [they] don’t act now, the number of people speaking the Hakka language could be no more than 5% of the country’s population in 30-40 years.” By harnessing the social tools of the time, the Hakka language and culture might better be preserved.
Although some colleges have implemented Hakka studies, more effort needs to be channeled through fairer media coverage, use of social media, and language preservation.
For more information: http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2012/12/10/2003549808