Mittwoch, 23. Oktober 2019, 18:30 - 20:00 iCal

Waste reduction in Taiwan

music, love, and the great garbage assemblage

SIN 1, Department of East Asian Studies
Spitalgasse, 2 Hof 2 Aufgang 2.3, 1090 Wien


Garbage in Taiwan is at the center of a musical assemblage that resonates beyond the confnes of the nightly waste collection soundscape. Garbage trucks in Taiwan are musical: Beethoven’s Für Elise or T. Badarzewska’s Maiden’s Prayer announce the garbage truck brigade’s arrival at designated times and places throughout urban Taipei. Neighbors stream into the street for a turn at depositing their presorted waste into the proper receptacles. Taiwan’s semi-tropical climate, combined with a densely situated human population and the presence of well established rat and cockroach populations, make garbage management a matter of daily urgency. In this paper, I take Taiwan’s pop music from the early 1980s through to the present as evidence of ways in which everyday habits and practices of reckoning with waste have seeped into a wide range of sensibilities.

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Vienna Center for Taiwan Studies


Astrid Lipinsky
Vienna Center for Taiwan Studies
Institut für Ostasienwissenschaften
4277 43844