This study investigates a language ideological debate concerning the adoption of simplified Chinese script—the norm in China—at tourist spots in Taiwan, where traditional Chinese script is the norm, after Taiwan opened up its market to Chinese independent travelers in 2011. With discourse data from the government, media, hosts, and Chinese travelers, we explore how the scripts are associated with various meanings and how the debate is interwoven with the contestation of Taiwanese identity. Multiple levels of tension are identified, including those between the symbolic and instrumental values of the scripts and between Taiwan's national identity and marketing considerations. We conclude that discourses concerning the two Chinese scripts serve as a discursive space where ‘Taiwaneseness’ and ‘Chineseness’ are variously constructed and negotiated along two main axes of differentiation.
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