THE WAY OF SQOYAW, THE MAP OF THE TRIBE: Film screening & seminar

March 12, 4:00pm - 5:30pm
Mānoa Campus, Online via Zoom Add to Calendar

You’re invited to meet Sayun Simung, documentary film producer for a video presentation and seminar about tribal youth reconnecting with their lands, language, and traditions. Sayun is a member of the Huangshan Sqoyaw Tayal Tribe, one of 16 recognized indigenous tribes in Taiwan. Sayun graduated from National Taiwan University of Arts and worked as a reporter and producer for Taiwan Indigenous Television and Era News and marketed documentary films. After returning to her hometown, Sayun documented her tribe’s efforts to reclaim their language, places, and stories and substituted in the tribal school.

The video contributes to the larger story of Indigenous peoples’ struggle to maintain and define their cultural identity despite pressure to assimilate into a national identity. After four centuries of colonization, several of Taiwan’s Indigenous tribes have lost their language. Tribal communities strive to conserve and revitalize languages spoken by only a few elders. The loss of language and cultural knowledge is especially significant to Polynesians, Pacific Islanders, and other Austronesian peoples who are culturally, linguistically, and genetically related to Taiwan’s Indigenous tribes.

Sayun filmed The Way of Sqoyaw in her hometown Huanshan Sqoyaw in northern Taiwan. A 3D map of the terrain is painstakingly created as a way to map the stories of elders onto the mountainous landscape. As part of returning to ancestral places, Sayun joins a group led by an elder to retrace their ancestors’ path into the mountains.


Watch the trailer at

Agenda for Video Seminar:

4:00 – 4:15 pm – Welcome and Introduction: Taiwan’s Indigenous peoples
4:15 – 5:00 pm – Video and commentary: The way of Sqoyaw
5:00 – 5:20 pm – Discussion: Land, language, education
5:20 – 5:30 pm – Next steps, conclusion.

This public presentation is made possible by the National Science Foundation Teacher Leadership project, facilitated by Dr. Pauline Chinn and Yu-Chieh Wu (graduate assistant) at the Department of Curriculum Studies. See you there!

Event Sponsor
Curriculum Studies, College of Education, Mānoa Campus

More Information
Nezia Azmi, (808) 956-4280,,

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