By SIMON MONTLAKE
SHIHDING, Taiwan -- Three to a table, the children bend to their coloring books, their tousled black hair absorbing the winter light from the window. It's chilly in the unheated classroom, but Hsu Wen-zhen has kicked off her pink flip-flops and is circling words with a yellow crayon. She looks up and flashes a cheeky smile.
At playtime, Wen-zhen blends in with her classmates at Shihding Elementary School. But on this once-homogenous island, she represents change: She's half-Vietnamese, her mother part of a surge of foreign brides over the past two decades. Taiwan has registered 420,000 marriages to foreigners since 1987, the vast majority between a Taiwanese man and an overseas woman.