To strengthen global connection with a service focus on international mainstream communities, the Ministry of Culture has designed and created the Taiwan Culture Toolkit, a multi-lingual website platform that includes literature, cinema, fine arts and traditional performing arts. The intention is to promote Taiwan culture and arts overseas by means of these materials so those in the international community will gain a better understanding of the current state of Taiwan culture in a variety of areas, and also to open up increased opportunities for cross-country cooperation and exchanges, extending Taiwan culture internationally.
Each culture toolkit will be a systematic collection of the most representative pieces provided with a multiple search function for browsing, full-text retrieval, and advanced searching. The Cinema and Traditional Performing Arts Toolkit will even offer DVDs that will be distributed to key Taiwan diplomatic missions and the Taiwan Academy overseas . Currently, the content of each Toolkit is as follows:
1. Cinema Toolkit
To show that Taiwan film reflects the diverse cultural realities of Taiwan society and is totally free and creative, this toolkit will feature 70 representative films from different periods, including early Taiwanese vernacular films, significant works from the New Film Movement, and prizewinners from international film festivals, all divided into nine major themes to facilitate overseas users in selecting films and planning theme reference material, enabling people to get a glimpse of the beauty of Taiwan film. Thirty-six of these films will be put on DVDs and made available to Taiwan diplomatic missions and overseas activities sponsored by the MOC's Taiwan Academy, or be loaned out for non-profit public showings, to promote Taiwan culture.
2. Literary Toolkit
There are 16 themes introducing the historical development and diversity of Taiwan literature. Ten representative literary selections are included under each theme, as well as ten associated videos, musical, or documentary films. As for the types of the 160 literary selections, they cover poetry, essays, and fiction and date from early indigenous oral literature to colonial literature from the period of Japanese rule and the works of modern and contemporary young writers, everything is included. In terms of their character, these works embrace both serious and popular literature. With 16 diverse themes, 160 high-quality literary pieces, and 146 writers, each with a unique style all on offer, we believe this Toolkit will help bring overseas readers very quickly into the world of Taiwan literature.
3. Fine Arts Toolkit
To present the active pulse and spiritual meaning of the fine arts in Taiwan, this toolkit will divide the planned National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts archive permanent exhibit and other related exhibits of Taiwan art into 13 categories based on the artistic medium. Selection will emphasize each piece's objective appearance and its artistic modality in different time-and-space backgrounds providing an introductory understanding for various communities; it will also provide philosophical and interpretive theme-based features for selection and presentation, as well as a reference to be used by all those concerned with Taiwan fine art.
4.Traditional Performing Arts Toolkit
To have foreign users become familiar with the beauty and unique characteristics of traditional Taiwan performing arts, this toolkit will collect and organize related contemporary written texts and video material, planning the four themes of opera, puppet theater, music, and folk acrobatics. The chief material will consist of an introductory level appreciation and analysis of significant representative opera types and music that are that still actively performed, such as Gezai Opera, Hakka Opera, Beijing Opera, and Kun Opera, etc., as well as a carefully chosen selection of 40 performance troupes and 120 of their representative works, each accompanied by a 3-5 minute highlight video. Links for further reading and related websites have also been designed to raise the international visibility of traditional Taiwan performing arts as well as enhance exchange possibilities.