This article aims to examine the cultural enlightenment activities in a local society by focusing on the reading society of Wu-fong I-sin Association. The author makes use of The Diary of Lin Hsien-t’ang, records of the reading society, and the existing research to work out who the members were and what they discussed in this elite organization and to analyze its role in social movements. This study also indicates the abundant cultural vitality of Wu-fong in 1930s and reveals diverse cultural situations of Taiwanese intellectuals between Japan and China, the East and the West, and the modern and the tradition.
From the aspect of the local society, the Lins utilized their broad political, economic, and social influences and took Wu-fong as a stage to achieve the collective vision for their family and the region by means of cultural activities. The reading society of Wu-fong I-sin Association was not only a cultural activity of the Lins but also a regional gathering. These activities represented intimate physical and spiritual connections between the people and the land.From the aspect of cultural movement, this reading society was a continuation and amendment of social movements in Taiwan since 1920s. From the whole Formosa back to the region, with experiencesgained in social movements of 1920s, and cultural ideals from Europe and America, including self-constructed autonomy and cultural enlightenment, the reading society dreamed to build up the new Taiwanese culture through regional developments.