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Soju: A Global History

From the publisher’s website:

Hyunhee Park offers the first global historical study of soju, the distinctive distilled drink of Korea. Searching for soju’s origins, Park leads us into the vast, complex world of premodern Eurasia. She demonstrates how the Mongol conquests of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries wove together hemispheric flows of trade, empire, scientific and technological transfer and created the conditions for the development of a singularly Korean drink. Soju’s rise in Korea marked the evolution of a new material culture through ongoing interactions between the global and local and between tradition and innovation in the adaptation and localization of new technologies. Park’s vivid new history shows how these cross-cultural encounters laid the foundations for the creation of a globally connected world.

  • Uncovers the importance of long-distance, cross-cultural exchanges in the history of Korea
  • Based on interdisciplinary methods including global history, food studies, and the history of science and technology
  • Includes a comparative discussion of distillation methods around the world

Table of Contents

1. Soju and Arak: The Eurasian Roots of Distilled Liquors
2. The Mongols and the Rise of Soju in Koryŏ Korea
3. Contextualizing Soju: Political Relations and Cultural Transfers between the Mongol Empire and Koryŏ Korea
4. Distilling Soju at Court and Home in Chosŏn Korea
5. Challenges of Modernity: The Rise of Modern Industrial Soju and Revival of Traditional Soju
6. Alcohol Globalism: Distillation Technology in Afro-Eurasia and other areas of the World – The Cases of Japan and Mexico
Conclusion: Soju in Global Cross-Cultural Exchanges.

Entry on here.

* Where the book is available from a number of sources, they are prioritised as follows: (1) Amazon UK site, or for the more recent uploads (2) Amazon US site (3) Other sites in US or Europe, including second-hand outlets (4) LTI Korea, where the title is advertised as available from there (5) Onlines stores in Korea. Links to and Amazon UK site contain an affiliate code which, should you make a purchase, gives a small commission to LKL at no additional cost to you.