Privacy and the Construction of Legal Meaning in Taiwan

21 Pages Posted: 22 Jan 2007

See all articles by Shin-yi Peng

Shin-yi Peng

National Tsing Hua University


This article attempts to construct a theoretical framework for understanding the social and legal meanings of privacy in a modern Chinese society. The focus of this inquiry is the legal mechanisms of privacy protection in Taiwan. Important legal phenomenon in a peripheral Chinese society in light of its recent social, economic, and cultural transformation is a fruitful resource for creative speculation on broader issues of constructing legal meaning of privacy for contemporary Chinese societies. In 1999, for the first time in Taiwanese civil law history, the term privacy appeared within the Civil Code. The Civil Code recognized the citizen's right to privacy and the right to definite remedies for privacy violations. Taiwanese people are increasingly resorting to formal legal channels as a remedy for invasions of privacy. However, the law, migrating from foreign states, is desperate for society to provide a concrete definition of privacy. The final part of this article will argue that Taiwanese law should not continue to borrow from foreign jurisprudence. Taiwanese law needs to develop its own criteria in balancing the conflicting interests associated with privacy.

Keywords: Privacy, Taiwan, Law & Society

Suggested Citation

Peng, Shin-yi, Privacy and the Construction of Legal Meaning in Taiwan. International Lawyer, No. 37, p. 1037, 2003, Available at SSRN:

Shin-yi Peng (Contact Author)

National Tsing Hua University ( email )

101, Section 2, Kuang Fu Road
Hsinchu, Taiwan 300


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