Historical

2010 Travel Diary #17: The Korea Cultural Heritage Foundation

by Philip Gowman 19 June 2010
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Tuesday 4 May 2010. As part of my trip to Korea, I wanted to understand more about the way in which Korea goes about preserving its ancient culture and presents it for modern audiences. Is it possible to market traditional culture to foreigners as a theme for tourism? How is it possible to market traditional […]

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Double entry, poison and murder: historical sources examined at SOAS

by Philip Gowman 17 June 2010
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LKL reports from the 21 May conference at SOAS – Historians, clerks and accountants: Methodological issues in the use of sources on Chosŏn History. The one-day seminar at SOAS examined the value and danger of using alternative historical sources. The types of sources discussed ranged from family and guild accounting records, via personal travelogues, ancient […]

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Historians, clerks and accountants: Methodological issues in the use of sources on Chosŏn History

by Philip Gowman 20 May 2010
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News of a one-day workshop at SOAS this Friday. Historians, clerks and accountants: Methodological issues in the use of sources on Chosŏn History Date: 21 May 2010 Time: 10:00 AM Room: 4421 [4th floor Russell Square: College Buildings, Thornhaugh Street, London WC1H 0XG] Type of Event: Workshop The aim of this workshop is to discuss […]

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The Korean War – a special interest weekend in Oxford

by Philip Gowman 9 April 2010
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Details of an interesting couple of days next weekend at Christ Church, in an event organised by Holt Tours. Wish I’d known about it earlier. Special Interest Weekend Christ Church, Oxford 15th April – 18th April 2010 The Korean War was fought 60 years ago, and next year will be the anniversary of the Chinese […]

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Korean Soldiers in the Japanese Army – talk at the Senate House

by Philip Gowman 23 February 2010
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The Comparative Histories of Asia Seminar is pleased to present: Global Japan Series: Professor Takashi Fujitani, University of California, San Diego ‘Korean Soldiers in the Japanese Amy: Some Reflections on Inclusionary or Polite Racism in WWII’ Thursday 25 February 2010, 5:30-7pm Room G37, South Block, Senate House Building, University of London All welcome.

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Two Korea-related talks at the Senate House

by Philip Gowman 26 January 2010
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News of two upcoming Korea-related seminars in the Comparative Histories of Asia Seminar hosted by the Institute of Historical Research at Senate House, University of London. Thursday 28th January, 5.30pm Dr Owen Miller (Cambridge / SOAS) “The Idea of Stagnation in Korean History from Fukuda Tokuzo to the New Right” Thursday 25 February, 5.30pm Professor […]

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Kim Jeong-ho’s Daedong Yeojido online

by Philip Gowman 25 January 2010
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An amazingly detailed 1861 pictorial map of the Korean peninsula is now available online. Well worth a look. # The Daedong yeojido was produced by the great Korean geographer Kim Jeong-ho. The map is at a scale of about 1:162,000 and is a wood block print that includes two inset maps of Seoul, texts and […]

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A belated look back at 2009

by Philip Gowman 9 January 2010
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For the past 3 years LKL has concocted a quiz of the year as a way of gathering together some of the news stories which have most caught our eye. This year, as I came to draw up the list in mid December I found it hard to think of anything amusing or diverting: most […]

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Before Babylon There Was…Pyongyang

by Matthew Jackson 4 December 2009
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Two thirds of the world’s dolmens are contained in the Korean peninsula. The Gochang, Hwaun, and Ganghwa dolmen sites can be found on the UNESCO World Heritage list. This probably begs the question, from me at least – what are dolmens exactly? They are stone monuments, generally consisting of two supporting stones and a cover stone […]

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Ch’udo yebae: Christian Accommodation to Korean Ancestral Rites

by Philip Gowman 1 November 2009
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Details of November’s Global Korea Lecture at the Cultural Centre: Tuesday 24th November 2009, 6.30pm Subject: Ch’udo yebae: Christian Accommodation to Korean Ancestral Rites Speaker: Professor James H. Grayson (School of East Asian Studies, University of Sheffield) Venue: Multi-purpose Hall, Korean Cultural Centre According to the 2005 Korean Household and Population Census, Christians now represent […]

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Innovative Korea – from past to present

by Philip Gowman 1 November 2009
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The Korean Spirit and Culture Promotion Project present an evening introducing Korea’s long-standing innovation: Date: 18th November 2009 Time: 6.15 for 6.30 pm Location: Korean Cultural Centre UK Grand Buildings, Northumberland Avenue, London, WC2N 5BW Programme A short talk will precede three documentary films, covering three representative pieces of Korean culture, and a detailed overview […]

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MacGyver and the Imjin War

by Matthew Jackson 30 October 2009
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I was puzzled when I learned that Koreans regard the time bomb as a proud addition to their list of inventions. This is because I associate the time bomb with incidents involving James Bond and MacGyver, in which the emphasis is on defusing the bomb and foiling the plans of an evil terrorist. Although it has […]

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The Turtle Ship

by Matthew Jackson 25 October 2009
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There is a story that when the nascent Korean shipping industry was attempting to raise capital, Barclays asked what the Koreans could provide in the way of security for the loan. The Korean executive is said to have taken a 500 won bill from his pocket, which featured the turtle ship of Yi Sun-sin, and […]

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Margaret Drabble: the search for the Crown Princess

by Philip Gowman 20 September 2009
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A couple of years ago at the BAKS conference Margaret Drabble gave a fascinating talk about how she came to be captivated by the story of Lady Hyegyong, wife of Prince Sado. Sado was son of a king and father of a king, but never made it to the throne himself. Lady Hyegyong wrote her […]

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The Western Korean War PoWs who chose to stay in China

by Philip Gowman 17 August 2009
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A fascinating documentary about twenty-four American and one British Korean War prisoners of war who chose to remain in China after the war: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 #. Part 1 is below

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Korean heritage at UNESCO

by Philip Gowman 16 August 2009
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Korea is rightly proud of some of its heritage, much of which has been given official recognition by UNESCO. For those of you who like lists, here are the various items of Korea’s tangible and intangible heritage which have been so listed. Also included below are links to any LKL articles on these treasures. (1) […]

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The Shining Fortress part 2: its remarkable story.

by Matthew Jackson 7 August 2009
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by Matthew Jackson The story which surrounds the building of the Hwaseong fortress is an extraordinary one. The fortress was originally built as part of the new Suwon city, a project initiated by King Chongjo. King Chongjo (or King Jeongjo, depending on your preferred romanization) had been greatly devoted to his father, Sado Seja, who […]

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