Oh, this brings back memories:
[quote]Taipei, May 11 (CNA) A feature-length documentary film about a venerable annual summer study tour of Taiwan titled “Love Boat: Taiwan” is currently in the planning stages by an American professor who once participated in the program.
San Francisco State University Asian American Studies professor and filmmaker Valerie Soe is producing a film about the Overseas Compatriot Youth Summer Formosa Study Tour to Taiwan, more commonly known by its colorful nickname the “Love Boat.” Ostensibly intended as a Chinese language and culture program, it has gained much fame as an opportunity for romance among expatriate Taiwanese youth.
The program was launched by the Overseas Compatriot Affairs Commission (now known as the Overseas Community Affairs Council) and the China Youth Corps in 1966 with about 70 students, and by its peak in the 1990s and early 2000s, it had 1,200 participants in two locations.
Soe asserted that from its inception “the Love Boat served three purposes: as a diplomatic tool for the Taiwanese government, as a place for young Taiwanese Americans to find romance, and as a means for Taiwanese American parents to insure the preservation of their bloodlines.”
The program seems to have had some success as many have come away with a better understanding of Taiwan, greater interest in the language and culture, lasting friendships and in some cases even a spouse.
According to Soe, the program’s strategy of mixing fun with politics paid off, "By leavening its lessons in history and politics with the promise of romantic adventure, the Love Boat is an ingenious example of diplomacy and political persuasion at its best."[/quote]