Son of Formosa2
*Like Persepolis, Son of Formosa explores Taiwan’s contemporary history through the story of an ordinary person.
*The simple yet gracefully drawn lines depicts the protagonist’s joy and sorrow. Different periods of his life are vividly represented in various styles.
*The pleasant and lively plot is narrated elaborately with tenderness.
*The tale reveals an ordinary person’s perseverance despite the hardships he faces in turbulent times.
This is an autobiographical graphic novel that details the life of Tsai Kun-lin, who was born in Qingshui, Taichung in 1930s Taiwan and lived through the Japanese rule, Chinese Nationalist Party's retreat to Taiwan, the White Terror period and the democratization process after the lifting of martial law. The complete publication consists of four volumes, each portraying a different period of the protagonist’s life. The comic artist also uses different techniques for each period. The synopses of each volume are as follows:
Volume II: Ten Years on Green Island
(Illustrations resembling woodcuts express the depressing experience of Tsai’s detention and imprisonment)
In his second year at Taichung First Senior High School, Tsai attends a book club hosted by his teacher and is consequently arrested on a false charge of taking part in an “illegal” assembly. After being tortured, he is sentenced to ten years in prison, deprived of civil rights for seven years, and sent to Green Island for reformation in 1951. Until his release in September 1960, Tsai, a victim of the White Terror era has spent ten years of his youth in prison on an unjust charge.
- Slowork Publishing, founded in 2013 and based in Taiwan, produces documentary comics set in countries across the Asian world. Slowork comics make Asia come alive for the reader through biography, autobiography, memoirs, anecdotes, reportage, vignettes from everyday life, and first-hand personal accounts.
The project aspires to forge a unique form of documentary unlike that of either film or literature, treating topics thus far less often addressed in Asia, as seen through the eyes of talented writers.