When did Korea modernize? For many, the answer lies in the colonial era. Professor Kyung Moon Hwang is critical of this view and offers an alternative. He argues that Korea’s modernization is not just a result of Japanese influence, but that it already started in the 19th century and the Joseon dynasty. To learn more, we spoke to him about this process.
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China’s foreign policy has become more assertive in recent years, stoked worries in its neighbors and is increasingly seen as a challenge towards America’s presence in the region. We spoke to Professor Robert S. Ross about the driving forces behind China’s behavior, how America should and does respond, and what this means for the two Korean states.
From 1910 to 1945, Japan ruled over the Korean Peninsula and tried to assimilate the Korean people into its empire. Part of this ambition was the suppression of the native language. Despite these circumstances, local authors produced insightful fictional works. We spoke to Professor Janet Poole about these writings and their reception.
The relations between South Korea, Japan and the United States are often described as triangular. The two Asian countries are in long-standing alliances with America, and all share common interests, such as North Korea’s denuclearization. Yet this North East Asian triangle is facing an uncertain future, about which we spoke with Jonathan D. Pollack.