London Korean Links

Covering things Korean in London and beyond since 2006

Quietude: A Musical Anthropology of “Korea’s Hiroshima” [forthcoming]

Most of us the world over do not know much about the nuclear experience, let alone the 70,000 Korean victims of the atomic bomb or their arts of life and survival. Quietude: A Musical Anthropology of “Korea’s Hiroshima” gives new insight into the overlooked and abused people who have lived and died on the margins … [Read More]

Literature and Cultural Identity during the Korean War: Comparing North and South Korean Writing [forthcoming]

Through an in-depth analysis of wartime essays and literary works, Literature and Cultural Identity during the Korean War considers the similarities and differences in the way that writers from both North and South Korea perceived and experienced the conflict. In this book, Jerôme de Wit examines the social impact of major themes in the output … [Read More]

Korea: A New History of South and North [forthcoming]

A major new history of North and South Korea, from the late nineteenth century to the present day Korea has a long, riveting history—it is also a divided nation. South Korea is a vibrant democracy, the tenth largest economy, and is home to a world-renowned culture. North Korea is ruled by the most authoritarian regime … [Read More]

Boundless Winds of Empire: Rhetoric and Ritual in Early Chosŏn Diplomacy with Ming China [forthcoming]

For more than two hundred years after its establishment in 1392, the Chosŏn dynasty of Korea enjoyed generally peaceful and stable relations with neighboring Ming China, which dwarfed it in size, population, and power. This remarkably long period of sustained peace was not an inevitable consequence of Chinese cultural and political ascendancy. In this book, … [Read More]

Human-Animal Relations and the Hunt in Korea and Northeast Asia [forthcoming]

Studies the hunt, animals and how regional dynamics informed local cultural practices on the Korean peninsula Elucidates the significance of the peninsula in regional and Eurasian history through detailing and navigating animals and the hunt, themes scholarship has overlooked. Reframes the struggle between a kingship and a powerful bureaucracy competing for authority over an expanding … [Read More]

Justifying Violence on Korea’s Cold War Frontlines: The Life and Representations of Kim Tu-han [forthcoming]

The son of a nationalist martyr, Kim Tu-han (1918-1972) rose to prominence as a mobster in 1930s Seoul. As conditions shifted, he deployed his gang first as a construction corps supporting the Japanese war effort, then as a progressive force, and, most successfully, as an anti-communist vigilante group. After narrowly escaping the death sentence for … [Read More]

Dress History of Korea: Critical Perspectives on the Primary Sources [forthcoming]

Bringing together a wealth of primary sources and with contributions from leading experts, Korean Dress History presents the most recent approaches to the interpretation of Korean dress. Through close analysis of an impressive range of visual, written, and material sources―some newly excavated or recently re-discovered in global museums―the book reveals how Korean clothing and accessories evolved from … [Read More]

The Other Great Game: The Opening of Korea and the Birth of Modern East Asia [forthcoming]

A dramatic new telling of the dawn of modern East Asia, placing Korea at the center of a transformed world order wrought by imperial greed and devastating wars. In the nineteenth century, Russia participated in two “great games”: one, well known, pitted the tsar’s empire against Britain in Central Asia. The other, hitherto unrecognized but … [Read More]

Song of Arirang: The Story of a Korean Rebel Revolutionary in China [forthcoming]

From the publisher’s website: Song of Arirang tells the true story of Korean revolutionary Kim San (Jang Jirak), who left colonized Korea as a teenager to fight against Japanese imperialism and fought alongside Mao’s Red Army during the Chinese Revolution. First published in 1941, this remarkably intimate memoir (as told to the American journalist Nym … [Read More]

City of Sediments: A History of Seoul in the Age of Colonialism [forthcoming]

Once the capital of the five-hundred-year Chosŏn dynasty (1392–1897) and the Taehan Empire (1897–1910), the city of Seoul posed unique challenges to urban reform and modernization under Japanese colonial rule in the early twentieth century, constrained by the labyrinthian built environment of the old Korean capital. Colonial authorities attempted to employ a strategy of “erasure”—monumental … [Read More]

A Forgotten British War: The Accounts of Korean War Veterans [forthcoming]

This book presents oral histories from the last surviving UK veterans of the Korean War. With the help of the UK National Army Museum and the British Korean Society, this book collects nearly twenty testimonials of UK veterans of the Korean War. Many only teenagers when mobilized, these veterans attempt to put words to the … [Read More]

Flowers of Fire: The Inside Story of South Korea’s Feminist Movement and What It Means for Women’ s Rights Worldwide [forthcoming]

An eye-opening firsthand account of the ongoing and trailblazing feminist movement in South Korea—one that the world should be watching. Since the beginning of the #MeToo movement, tens of thousands of people in South Korea have taken to the street, and many more brave individuals took a stand, to end a decades-long abortion ban and … [Read More]

Skull Water [forthcoming]

A remarkable intergenerational coming-of-age novel set in South Korea—about friendship, belonging, and displacement. Growing up outside a US military base in South Korea in the aftermath of the Vietnam War, Insu—the son of a Korean mother and a German father enlisted in the US Army—spends his days with his “half and half” friends skipping school, … [Read More]

100°C: South Korea’s 1987 Democracy Movement

What does it take for ordinary citizens to risk everything to protest living under a repressive government? What takes them beyond the brink, to the “boiling point”? In his graphic novel 100°C, celebrated webtoon and comics artist Choi Kyu-sok sheds a light on these questions by examining the lives of one family caught up in the great … [Read More]

Calculated Nationalism in Contemporary South Korea: Movements for Political and Economic Democratization in the 21st Century

Nationalism in a nation-state reflects its emergent structural, cultural, and personal properties at a given time. In the politico-historical context of South Korea and the globe, the fruits of the 1968 Revolution in France could not reach Korean society under its military regime and exploitative economic structure. This continued to frustrate the grassroots and especially social actors … [Read More]

Memory Construction and the Politics of Time in Neoliberal South Korea

In Memory Construction and the Politics of Time in Neoliberal South Korea Namhee Lee explores memory construction and history writing in post-1987 South Korea. The massive neoliberal reconstruction of all aspects of society shifted public discourse from minjung (people) to simin (citizen), from political to cultural, from collective to individual. This shift reconstituted people as Homo economicus, rights-bearing and rights-claiming individuals, … [Read More]