ISSN : 0023-3900
The regionalism in South Korea, historically produced in the conflicting and tension-filled process of "competition, defense, and exclusion" of resource distribution, is multi-dimensional, multi-formed and complex. In this paper, I examine regionalism in South Korean society in three dimensions: jiyeok gamjeong as a typical regional sentiment, intra regional disparities (polarization between Seoul and the local), and the emergence of a new kind of regionalism (locality). In South Korea, regionalism is commonly regarded as a harmful and negative social phenomena because of the social deformities it produces. However, regionalism can function to provoke the vitality of social development through the formation of identity in relation to a specific area and promote “healthy” competition. Regionalism may imply positive motives toward the restoration of local subjectivity and the improvement in the quality of life. It is required for the Korean people to utilize the positive as a dynamic means of developing a progressive South Korean democracy and civil society.