Taiwan scholar Li Ao to visit mainland
Prominent Taiwanese writer and political commentator Li Ao will visit the mainland from Sept. 19, his first trip in 56 years.
At a conference organized by the Phoenix Television on Monday, Li said he hoped his trip would promote culture exchanges between Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong.
Li Ao is Taiwan's foremost scholar and historian. He is well known by mainland intellectuals for his satire, sharp commentaries and poignant criticism.
Li Ao was born in the city of Harbin in northeast China and grew up in Beijing. At the age of 14, he moved with his family to Shanghai and from there to Taiwan in 1949.
He is considered by some to be one of the best Chinese writers of our day. His political inclinations are more controversial; he is a staunch and outspoken Pan-Blue supporter, who has been given much media exposure thanks to his popularity as a writer.
Li Ao has been credited for his contribution to the democratic movement in Taiwan from the 1960s to the 1980s. In the 1960s, he was the editor-in-chief of Wenxing, a magazine that promoted democracy and personal freedom.
Li Ao has long been an advocate of reunification.
His novel Mountaintop Love, about a mother and daughter who fall in love with the same man, solidified Li's status as a serious novelist.
Li Ao strongly supports the idea of "One country, two systems" proposed by Deng Xiaoping.
He believes that the unification of China is irresistible and at one point
advocated an immediate reunion. He thinks that if reunification came earlier, it
would be more beneficial for Taiwan.