AMERICAN UNIV WASHINGTON D C FOREIGN AREA STUDIES DIV
The Republic of China is the repository of the accomplishments of the Chinese civilization, one of the greatest and oldest in the world. In 1949 control of the territory of China was fragmented when the Chinese Communists forced the duly elected government of the Republic of China to take refuge on the island of Taiwan. Since that time the Communists have imposed a dictatorial reign on mainland China and have sought to destroy the Chinese cultural heritage. The government of the Republic of China, while functioning as the government-in-exile for entire mainland China, at the same time operates as the government-in-fact of the Province of Taiwan and of a few additional islands. The attempt in this study is to present the current status and accomplishments of the territory actually under control of the government of the Republic of China, as well as the influence the Chinese heritage has had, and continues to have, on the life of the people of Taiwan, who are almost entirely of Chinese origin.