This book, Democracy Takes Root follows on from the first in The Taiwan Experience trilogy, The Seeds of Democracy. The e-book version of Book Two: Democracy Takes Root, like Book One, is divided into three parts. Book Two is being published in three separate parts for reasons explained in the book's description on Amazon. This is the first part of Book Two.
I’m a naturalised ROC (Taiwan) citizen born and bred in the UK, and resident in Taiwan for 30 years.
I arrived in Taiwan in January 1986, as a young, shoestring backpacker travelling around the world, and ended up staying, and eventually taking nationality. Being a traveller has allowed me to make better comparisons and evaluations of the changes that have taken place in Taiwan than someone with experience of living only in one other country.
Books by Alix Lee
Beginning with the Umbrella Movement in 2014, a long series of student-led protests have rocked the territory. Some of the demonstrations have been held specifically in protest against laws giving more power to China's central government in the ostensibly autonomous region. Beijing's Chinese Communist Party has responded by forcing through more of the same, with some of the legislation aimed at preventing further protest.
At over 46,000 words, Overlanding (Part 1) is the longest story of the series so far, for one of the shortest periods of actual travel. There are a number of good reasons for this. When I signed my name into a logbook of foreign nationals at Pakistan's sole land border crossing with Iran, and noticed that the entries for the entire previous day numbered just two, I knew without a shadow of a doubt that I was on a unique, unrepeatable, once-in-a-lifetime travel experience.
The story begins in late 1984 and is the sixth tale in the series overall. Culture Shock finds the young traveller (myself) taken from the relative orderliness of a life in London where he had been attempting, with mixed results, to pursue a career in the travel industry (related in the fifth story of the series, A Career in Travel), and throws him into the furious assault on the senses that constituted life in the Indian capital, Delhi, at that time.
A roller-coaster adventure travel story set in the 1980s, it includes travel and voluntary work in rural India, a dangerous trip into the Kashmir Himalaya, an overland journey through war-torn Iran, and also tackles the topic of institutionalised racism and police brutality.
The thirteenth story in the True Tales of a Traveler series, Winter Break is set mostly in the Philippines about a year after the deposal of the dictator Ferdinand Marcos. The People Power revolution that led to the end of the Marcos era and ushered in the new government of Corazon Aquino had been positively reported on throughout the free world, and just reading those news reports made me keen to visit the country and see life there first-hand.
The True Tales of a Traveller series of short stories and novellas consists of several dozen real-life travellers' tales covering three and a half decades. Although presented in a short story format for reading convenience, these stories are not fiction. Apart from some of the characters’ names, which have been changed to protect their identities, everything in these stories is true. These stories do not all fit neatly into the ‘travel story’ genre, although some will indeed meet most readers’ expectations in this regard.
The fifth story in the True Tales of a Traveller series, A Career in Travel, is at nearly 40,000 words a substantial novella-length account set mostly in Britain in 1984. The story is about a young traveller’s attempt to integrate his love for travel into a regular, settled lifestyle in London. Although humorous in places, this is also a thought-provoking story that goes to the heart of what it means to be a traveller, the differences and similarities between a traveller and a tourist ...
Set in the 1970s, mostly in Warrington, a declining industrial town on the banks of the River Mersey approximately equidistant from Liverpool and Manchester, the story concerns a rebellious teenager whose determined refusal to take high school O-level examinations ultimately lands him in the padded cell of a high-security mental hospital for the criminally insane. This book is a hard-hitting, no-holds-barred description of life in the post-industrial wasteland of north-west England in the 1970s.
The first in the True Tales series is called Goodbye Sinai, and is set in 1982, at the time of Israel’s return of the Sinai peninsula to Egypt. This story is about a hitch-hiking trip down the Sinai peninsula, which involved a number of unexpected incidents and developments.
True Tales of a Traveller is a series of short stories and novellas consisting of several dozen traveller’s tales covering 35 years. Although presented in a short story format for reading convenience, these stories are not fiction. Apart from some of the characters’ names which have been changed to protect their identities, everything in these stories is true. The tenth story in the True Tales of a Traveller series, One Day in Bangkok is set in Thailand and the Netherlands in the mid-1980s.
Just A Businessman is the seventh in the True Tales of a Traveller series. The story is set in Indian Kashmir in the mid 1980s and can now finally be told without consequence. At nearly 17,000 words, this story is a lengthy short story which may need more than one sitting. Like the other stories in the series, it provides not only an entertaining read, but also information on all the places visited, some relevant only to the era in which the story is set, but most still relevant today.
The fourth story in the series (this story), Alternative Medicine, is set mostly in Greece and Egypt in 1983. At around 13,000 words, this story is a lengthy short story which may need more than one sitting. Like the other stories in the series, it provides not only an entertaining read, but also information on all the places visited, some relevant only to the era in which the story is set, but most still relevant today.
At over 17,000 words, the story borders on novella length. Unlike the first two stories of the series, The Long Way Home is set not in one country, but in half-a-dozen. But like the other stories in the series, it provides not only an entertaining read, but also information on all the places visited, some relevant only to the era in which the story is set, and some still relevant today. In addition to being a travel story, The Long Way Home is also a love story, and a story about the unexpected twists and turns that can occur in personal relationships.
True Tales of a Traveller is a series of stories (5,000-15,000 words) covering 35 years. Although presented in a short story format for reading convenience, these stories are not fiction. They will all be priced at between US$0.00 and $0.99 (‘permafree’ is dependent on Amazon’s agreement) for the coming year. They will appeal to anyone with an interest in travel, contemporary history, geography, culture, or international relations, or anyone who just likes good short reads.
The book is the first of three covering Taiwan's gradual evolution from a one-party state to the democracy it is today, as seen through the eyes of a foreigner and Taiwan citizen resident for over 30 years. It covers both social and political changes, and provides insight into present-day political circumstances as well as government-criminal organisation connections, among other things.