NTU Press Director Receives Scholarly Monograph Award from Academia Sinica
The list of awardees of the 7th Scholarly Monograph Award in the Humanities and Social Sciences, Academia Sinica, was released on January 3. A highly prestigious honor in Taiwan’s academic circle, this award was established to promote the publication of monographs in the humanities and social sciences and encourage in-depth academic research.
NTU Press Director, Prof. Tay-sheng Wang (王泰升) at the College of Law, was unanimously acclaimed by the jury and awarded the honor for his monograph, Go to Court: The Transformation of “Judicial Consciousness” in Taiwan under Japanese Rule (2017). The book examines the judicial system and its overall operation in Taiwan under Japanese rule during 1895-1945. It reveals that, in contrast to traditional judicial practices, the modern system separates adjudication from mediation, trials from litigation, administration from jurisdiction, and distinguishes the roles of judge, lawyer, and prosecutor. Given these, the traditional and modern judicial practices were interwoven in Taiwan during Japanese rule.
Citing materials from the Taiwan Colonial Court Records Archives (TCCRA) for an empirical legal study, Prof. Wang collected civil and criminal cases during Japanese rule from Taipei District Court to examine transformations in people’s judicial consciousness. The book identifies how Taiwanese people came to adopt modern judicial consciousness during the 50 years of Japanese rule, given that the transition was not complete and that traces of traditional judicial consciousness were still visible.
The jury reviewed and praised the book as having applied both quantitative and qualitative methodologies to illuminate the development and transformation of judicial consciousness in Taiwan from a cross-disciplinary perspective. The significance of this book lies not only in exploring whether and how people experience impacts caused by transitions in the legal system, but also in identifying the social conditions required for judicial institutional development. Besides making substantial contributions to the academia, the book is also an inspiring work for those hoping to reform our judicial and legal systems.
The award ceremony was held at Academia Sinica on December 21, 2018. At the ceremony, Prof. Tay-sheng Wang recalled and traced his motives for conducting this study back to 1990 when he pursued further studies at the University of Washington, Seattle. It was these years of overseas experience and the recognition of Taiwanese subjectivity that led Prof. Wang to ponder what laws were like in Taiwan during Japanese rule. To find the answer, he gave up his career as a lawyer and dedicated himself to research. The 1990s saw the rise of a new research domain in law and history—the legal history of Taiwan from a Taiwanese perspective. Go to Court is a work grounded in the literature of this field.
NTU Press is honored to have another of its publications selected for the Scholarly Monograph Award after The Fabulation of a New Earth: Contemporary Taiwanese Nature Writing (2016), the award-winning monograph written by Dr. Yun-Lin Lee (李育霖), a distinguished professor at National Chung Hsing University. In the future, NTU Press will continue to publish high-quality academic books and introduce more exceptional academic works to Chinese-language readers in Taiwan and abroad.
To learn more about Go to Court, visit http://eng.press.ntu.edu.tw/?act=book&refer=ntup_book00992. For more info about the 7th Academia Sinica Scholarly Monograph Award in the Humanities and Social Sciences, visit http://newsletter.sinica.edu.tw/en/five-scholars-receive-the-7th-academia-sinica-scholarly-monograph-award-in-the-humanities-and-social-sciences/.