10papers in this issue.
The purpose of this article is to attempt to combine North Korean humanities research with digital humanities methods, using the North Korean Humanities Data Archive (NKHDA) project as an example, and to report on a newly constructed semantic data processing model. Although NKHDA targeted the entire scope of North Korean humanities, it mainly focused on the field of historiography, which has a relatively large accumulation of scholarly information. This article focuses on North Korean historiography to discuss the following three points. Firstly, the theoretical and technical background of the NKHDA is summarized. Secondly, the trial-and-error process of constructing NKHDA is described. Thirdly, the process of creating a new model of semantic data processing by combining wiki documentation and triple data/ visualization is described. A new model was made possible by embedding triple data lists and network graphs into wiki pages and developing a data entry tool for triple data generation. Also described is the NKHDA’s use as an educational platform for the digital humanities.
This paper presents the results of a bibliometric analysis undertaken on Joseon gogo yeongu (Joseon Archaeological Research), North Korea’s preeminent archaeology journal, providing information on the researchers, institutions, and research topics that have come to form the field of archaeological research in North Korea since the mid-1980s. Deviating from previous analyses of Joseon gogo yeongu, this paper focuses on the authors that contributed to Joseon gogo yeongu, identifying the archaeologists that have been most active in publishing articles. This particular method of establishing the key figures of North Korean archaeology reveals the presence of certain archaeologists whose importance has been overlooked within the South Korean discourse on North Korean archaeology. In addition, by tracing the research topics of these key figures over time, a broad understanding of the field of archaeological research in North Korea can be obtained. Information on institutional affiliations and co-authorships present within Joseon gogo yeongu also provide valuable insights into the workings of North Korean academia. Finally, by visualizing the results of the bibliometric analysis using word clouds and networks, the efficacy of Digital Humanities approaches to large data sets is demonstrated.
This article aims at a comparative analysis of the prefaces in Lim Hak-Su’s translations of the Iliad. Lim published three translations of the Iliad, the first in 1940 during the Japanese colonial period, and later in North Korea in 1963 and 1989. The differences between the prefaces in these three editions are noteworthy. While the 1940 preface begins with high praise for the Iliad and the emotional and romantic tone is maintained until the end, the 1963 preface attempts to focus on an objective narrative. Lim defined Homer’s Iliad as an “inmin epic.” The most noteworthy point of this preface is that Lim cites Engels and Marx to support his evaluation of the Iliad. Finally, in the preface to the 1989 translation, the perspectives of Marx and Engels are gone and Kim Ilsung’s teachings appear instead. Such changes show that the communism of Marx and Engels, which can be called a foreign ideology, had finally been overcome in North Korean society and that Kim Il-sung’s Juche ideology had been established as the absolute state policy with the highest authority. The case of Lim’s prefaces allows us to think about how literary criticism is influenced by national ideologies and what it means to study literature and humanities in North Korea.
This article aims to analyze significant changes in family law and their relationship to gender equality, which has emerged as one of several factors contributing to low fertility in Korea from a socio-legal perspective. Fertility changes in Korea can be categorized into two distinct periods. The first period, spanning from 1960 to the late-1990s, saw a rapid decline in the fertility rate from approximately six children per woman to slightly below the replacement level. The second period began around the early 2000s, and is characterized by a further decline in the fertility rate to an extremely low level that continues until recent times. During the first phase of low fertility, several revisions were made to the family law, including major revisions related to hojuje, along with subsequent changes. This paper analyzes the implications of some of these family law revisions, specifically, examining provisions related to son preference and gender discrimination in inheritance and the parent-child relationship in family law and their impact on fertility. Through this analysis, this study aims to establish a connection between the revisions of family law and changes in fertility, ultimately shedding light on the complex relationship between law and society in modern Korea.
This study is an attempt to rethink from a social and cultural point of view the historical and cultural importance of Anseong Catholic Church, South Korea, in the local community. Anseong Catholic Church was established in 1901 when Father Antoine Gombert (1875–1950) arrived in Anseong and officially began his missionary work. Anseong Catholic Church has played an important role in local society by working with the residents of Anseong during tumultuous periods, including the opening of ports, the Japanese occupation, and the modern periods. For more than a century, Anseong Catholic Church has served as the parish center of the Anseong and Pyeongtaek Catholic Churches while helping Catholicism become established in Anseong. This study reexamines the value and historical significance of Anseong Catholic Church, from four perspectives: religion, education, social work, and the March First Movement. Specifically, the study examines first, the value of Anseong Catholic Church in introducing Catholicism to southern Gyeonggi-do province; second, the historical value of Anseong Catholic Church in laying the foundation for modern education in Anseong; third, the value of Anseong Catholic Church as the center of social and charity work in Anseong; and fourth, the role of the Anseong Catholic Church in germinating democracy after the March First Movement during the Japanese occupation.
This article will explain the Zhonghua community strategy and its impact on the formation of the self-identity of Joseon’s political elites, and the resulting change in the Ming court’s attitude toward the Joseon dynasty. The architect of the institutions of the early Joseon dynasty, Jeong Dojeon, insisted the Joseon dynasty should internalize Confucian moral values and become the model tributary in this world order. His plan was materialized by kings of the early Joseon dynasty. Among various policies, the establishment of new rituals was the key project of the Zhonghua community strategy. The political elites of the early Joseon dynasty prided themselves on representing the country of courtesy. In the mid-Ming period, the Ming court accepted Joseon’s claim, and began treating it as a civilized country distinctive from other barbarian nations. Far from being a purely anachronistic policy of a distant period, this “Zhonghua community strategy” of the early Joseon dynasty can be taken as a reference point for understanding the policy-making of modern Korea.
The goal of both Jeong Yakyong and King Jeongjo was to resolve the gap between rich and poor that in their day was increasing due to landowners buying up extensive areas of land. They regarded this as a question of executing justice. Therefore, Jeong argued the hamlet-land system, and later supplemented this with the well-field system, as he believed this would equalize the people’s livelihoods while increasing government revenue. Jeongjo also implemented the well-field system for land reform, albeit on a trial basis for a short period in some towns. Jeongjo’s goal was to allow villagers to be farmers in times of peace and soldiers in times war, though ultimately he did not achieve this aim. Later, Jeongjo implemented the military provision-land system of his predecessor King Yeongjo, fearing the implementation of the wellfield system would cause popular resentment. Jeong Yakyong’s long-term proposal was for the implementation of the well-field system nationwide. In this, Jeong’s proposal was reformative, whereas Jeongjo sought only to maintain the existing land system. But both Jeong and Jeongjo’s support of rice paddies meant the maintenance of an existing system, not reform. In his reform proposals, Jeong’s focus was on justice, while that of Jeongjo was social stability.
Situated within the context of the rise of right-wing populism, this study aims to explore the enigmatic emergence of the idaenam movement and the prevailing gender polarization witnessed during the recent 19th and 20th presidential elections in South Korea. Among idaenam activists, feminism holds significant hegemonic influence, and their perception of reverse discrimination serves as a critical lens through which they interpret gender dynamics in Korean society. Additionally, the perceived structural injustices and unfulfilled promise of meritocracy, along with the fiercely competitive nature of contemporary society, compounded by the influence of neoliberalism and the overarching context of modernity, contribute to feelings of ontological insecurity among young men in their twenties. This sense of uncertainty and anxiety compels them to rally around a perceived shared objective, aligning themselves with right-wing populism, which espouses the restoration of stability by upholding certain traditional gender norms. By unraveling the complexities of these interconnected factors, this study contributes to a nuanced understanding of the idaenam phenomenon and its implications for gender equality and identity politics in modern Korean society.
This study argues that, from the standpoint of social suffering, the perspective that sees refugees in terms of their “bare life” (Agamben) over-represents the legal-political system and treats them as apolitical subjects. This study posits that when seen not only in the legal-political but also in personal-relationalsocial dimensions, refugees can be understood as political subjects during their transnational journeys from North to South Korea. In-depth interviews with North Korean refugees who have settled in South Korea are used to support this point. Other Asian states approach North Korean refugee migrations according to their own particular social and political circumstances and the refugees describe their experiences of exploitation and social dislocation as “bearable pain” or “temporary pain” in light of the hoped-for survival and legal asylum. While helpful in adapting psychologically or emotionally to adverse circumstances, such perceptions support the continuation of inhumane relationships and unjust practices in the formal and informal socio-economic arena made up of North Korean refugees and the local subjects who interact with them. The lived experiences and storytelling of refugees, however, expose contradictions in the social structure and demonstrate they are political subjects.