Jie Mama (Yu-ying)

Yu-ying is not your average grandma. Fondly called Jie Mama by people in her community, she speaks six languages - Kavalan, Taiwanese, Mandarin Chinese, Japanese, Amis, and Sakizaya. She was declared a "National Treasure" in her native Taiwan in 2021. Growing up in wartime meant she did not have access to education. As a child, she would watch her mother weave banana fiber into textiles. Her mom never attempted to teach her the craft; she was told it wouldn't be a valuable skill to have in the future. Refusing to buy into the narrative that banana weaving is obsolete, she taught herself the craft in her adult years through the help of the elderly Kavalans. Banana weaving helped Jie Mama make a living and a name for herself.