Cross-strait marriages and immigration policies

Isabelle Cheng*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


This chapter examines how the Taiwanese government regulates and integrates the feminised Chinese marriage migration in the citizenship legislation. Seeing Chinese female spouses as citizens, Taiwan actively scrutinises their request for settlement for the interests of public safety, national security, and expelling the hypocrisy of the un-recognised sovereignty of Taiwan. Regarding the making of immigration legislation as an integral part of democratisation, this chapter points out that household registration is utilised as an institution with which to stress the desired territorial link between Chinese migrants and the host society for their integration into the political community of Taiwan. Seeing Chinese female spouses as wives-mothers, this chapter shows that the legislation is gendered in a way which recognises the critical advantages of the care they provide for the family as well as the society. However, a close examination of the cross-strait couples’ strategies of rights-claim movement shows that the gendering of the legislation is inter-subjectively constructed by the couples and the state. At times, framing them along the gender bias serves the interest of the couples as a whole, and the Chinese wives themselves, in certain circumstances.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRoutledge Handbook of Contemporary Taiwan
EditorsGunter Schubert
Number of pages16
ISBN (Electronic)9781315769523
ISBN (Print)9781138781870, 9780367581619
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2016


  • marriage migration
  • organised hypocrisy
  • sovereignty
  • integration
  • household registration
  • citizenship legislation


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