Volume 10, Issue 1
  • ISSN 2210-4070
  • E-ISSN: 2210-4097
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This study analyzes five political cartoons published in the (Taiwan Daily Newspaper) depicting the Musha Uprising, an indigenous rebellion against Japanese colonial rule that occurred in Taiwan in 1930. The study has produced two important findings and theoretical implications. First, two of the political cartoons deployed The Great Chain of Being multimodal metaphor, and the artist’s conceptual blending of Japanese kabuki stories with the Musha Uprising dramatically portrayed the colonizers as humans and the colonized as animals. We analyze the social and historical context to explain why these cartoons used the boar as a metaphor representing the indigenous people. Second, our results reveal paradoxical and ambivalent perspectives in the cartoons. On one hand, the metaphor of Human vs. Animal reproduced the unequal hierarchical relations between the colonizers and the colonized. On the other hand, the cartoonist also portrayed the rulers in a critical and satirical way. Finally, the research relates the content of this analysis with the post-colonial theorizing of Edward Said. In sum, the study makes a contribution to interdisciplinary research by applying metaphor theory to the analysis of political cartoons and colonial discourse, as well as revealing the hierarchical colonial thinking and racial prejudice lurking behind the metaphors.


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