China, Taiwan: Chuen Juei "Josephine" Ho

The value of scholars lies in their discursive power to open up new horizons and new visions beyond existing prejudice and bigotry.

— Chuen Juei "Josephine" Ho

What Ho Chuen Juei "Josephine" (54) has done is to challenge bigotry and prejudice with her academic work and her social participation and activist writing. In challenging traditional social hierarchies and self-righteous morality, Ho hopes to work toward equality, peace and justice. Although she has suffered attacks and legal prosecution because of her efforts, she has never lost her persistence in her human rights ideals.

The turbulent social movements in Taiwan since the lifting of the marital laws in 1987 provided Ho Chuen Juei "Josephine" with optimal opportunities to stand with many workers who became jobless overnight because of the newly spreading phenomenon of capital flow. In addition to the workers' movement, Ho is best known for her work in gender and sexuality rights movements. In the early 1990s, Ho and other feminist scholars were instrumental in raising social concern for issues such as sexual harassment and domestic violence. Ho also attended to subjects in different social positions, including lesbians, sexually active youths, sex workers, transgender women, and other sexual minorities. Ho is considered the most outspoken activist in these areas in Taiwan. To further promote a diverse and inclusive social space for discussions of marginal topics, Ho established the Centre for the Study of Sexualities at National Central University. Academic activities such as holding annual conference on gender and sexuality research have been held since 1996; a total of 19 books have been published. In addition, Ho was a founding member and a long-term supporter of the Gender/Sexuality Rights Association of Taiwan which has just won the 2004 Felipa Award from the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission for its outstanding contribution. 16 years of continuous selfless work toward de-stigmatization has proven Ho to be a devoted activist and scholar.

Gender/Sexuality Rights Association of Taiwan