Are You ‘The Good Daughter’?

Amanda Yuk
2 min readJan 7, 2021

Without trying to sound too much like a feminist, this film really touched a chord on my heart. This article in Taipei Times presents the real-life documentary as one that many similar women, who are usually of a low socioeconomic status, and who come from developing countries; typically face. The tradition of Taiwanese men marrying Vietnamese women as their brides is not exclusive to either nationality. Non-profit Organization The Borden Project gives a quick glimpse into the why’s and how’s of the process.

By definition, a mail-order bride, is one who is “procured over the Internet” from either matchmaking agencies with personal databases of eligible spouses for single adults around the world, or from organizations known as IMBs or International Marriage Bureaus. However, in recent years, these matchmaking agencies have been phased out as a result of the rapid expansion of dating apps such as Tinder or simply from physical human connection. In normal society, most people simply get marriage certificates from their respective country’s governments and then live in harmony for the rest of their lives.

Anyhow, back to the documentary, the story is about how a Vietnamese woman known as A-zhe, marries a Taiwanese known as A-long and settles down in rural Yunlin County. Both of them struggle to make ends meet as the husband needs to sell plenty of garlic just to make sure they can feed themselves and their two school-aged daughters. Wu, the film-maker, does not let go of even a single part of their conversation, fearing that these tiny details will make or break the plot altogether. Overall, the short 1 hour and 24 minute production allows viewers to gain further insight into not only the plights of someone living somewhere unfamiliar, but also the painful reality of international marriages and domestic strife.

The website defines a transactional marriage as one in which couples treat marriage as a business deal. Imagine this to be one where one person does all the housework, brings home all the bacon while the other party literally does not contribute or contributes to a smaller extent. In conclusion, this writer will continue to be a dutiful daughter, whether or not she will see any ROI (Return On Investment) in the long-run…

Amanda Yuk

A writer making her mark one word at a time.