Japan

Mary Lynn Bracht: White Chrysanthemum Penguin Random House 2018, 320pp White Chrysanthemum, the debut novel from Mary Lynn Bracht, tells the story of two sisters, brought up on Jeju Island, who were tragically separated in the last years of the Second World War. The elder sister, Hana, is abducted into sexual slavery by a Japanese […]

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SOAS conference: Senses and the Meanings of Modernity in East Asia, 1890–1945

by Events Editor 13 June 2018
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A conference at SOAS with some Korean interest, including sessions on the Local Colour Movement and on Korean film and food diplomacy: The Senses and the Meanings of Modernity in East Asia, 1890–1945 An exploratory workshop 18 June 2018, room S116 (Senate House), SOAS, University of London Reflecting recent shifts towards the study of embodied […]

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Japan Society talk: Escaping to North Korea – with Markus Bell

by Events Editor 18 February 2018
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Apologies for the late notice of tomorrow’s talk organised by the Japan Society, which may by now be fully subscribed. The speaker gave a fascinating talk at SOAS on broadly the same subject a few months ago, so I’d have high hopes of this one too. Escaping to North Korea – with Markus Bell 19 […]

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SOAS conference: Colonialism and its Reverberations

by Events Editor 16 January 2018
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A good half-day conference coming at the beginning of February. Check the event’s Facebook page or the SOAS website for updates. Colonialism and its Reverberations: ‘Comfort Women’ and Historical Revisionism in Korea and Japan Professor Yonson Ahn (University of Frankfurt), Professor Vladimir Tikhonov (University of Oslo), Professor Chong Yeonghwan (Meiji Gakuin University) 3 February 2018, […]

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Book review: Frontier Contact Between Chosŏn Korea and Tokugawa Japan

by Philip Gowman 18 November 2017
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James B. Lewis: Frontier Contact Between Chosŏn Korea and Tokugawa Japan Routledge, 2003, 340pp What a relief to return to some non-fiction. And although at LKL we are wholly unqualified to review academic works, we don’t mind saying why we it is that we like a particular book. Frontier Contact paints a fascinating picture of […]

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Visiting Korean students protest Comfort Woman issue

by 앤서방 29 June 2016
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Great to see so many young people from South Korea raising awareness of the ‘comfort women’ issue in London today, performing and protesting at the Japanese embassy and Trafalgar Square. Keywords: General post tags: Comfort Women | Japan | Protest

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Looking back at 2015: DPRK and regional news

by Philip Gowman 8 January 2016
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In our third review of 2015, we look at some of the North Korea related news, and stories which put the peninsula in a wider East Asian context. DPRK Human rights and defectors Shin Dong-hyuk, the most prominent campaigner among the defector community, admitted that some of his testimony (eg, in Escape from Camp 14) […]

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Supporters of Comfort Women to protest outside Korean Embassy

by Events Editor 3 January 2016
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When the BBC reported the “deal” between Japan and South Korea on the Comfort Women issue last week, saying that ‘South Korea says it will consider the matter resolved “finally and irreversibly” if Japan fulfills its promises,’ LKL marvelled that no mention was made of what the victims themselves thought about the deal. They don’t […]

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A surviving victim’s view on the Korea-Japan Comfort Women “deal”

by 앤서방 30 December 2015
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In September this year 90 year old survivor of WW2 Japanese military sexual slavery Kim Bok-dong gave two public talks in London, at the Korean Cultural Centre and at Goldsmiths University. She said she had come, ‘not as a victim but as a human rights activist’, and explained that the surviving ladies were not just […]

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Statements on the Comfort Women issue

by Philip Gowman 28 December 2015
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Statements published jointly today by the Japanese and South Korean Ministry of Foreign Affairs aim to bring closure to the issue of wartime sexual slavery. The Korean Council for the Women Drafted for Military Sexual Slavery by Japan also published a statement on the inter-governmental announcements, which says that the issue is by no means […]

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Brief conference report: Deconstructing Boundaries: is “East Asian Art History” possible, at SOAS

by Philip Gowman 12 October 2015
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This weekend’s two-day conference at SOAS (10-11 October), hosted by the Japan Research Centre, presented some fascinating papers on art history in East Asia. The question it asked – ‘Is “East Asian Art History” possible?’ – is at first sight a puzzling one (why should it not be?), until one scratches below the surface as […]

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Found in London’s Japan Centre: kimchi lemonade

by 앤서방 17 August 2015
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Kimchi flavoured lemonade is down in price – can’t imagine why. But according to Rocket News, who have also sampled curry, octopus and chili pepper Ramune sodas: “It’s damn good!” Keywords: General post tags: Japan

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If you’re into J-pop as well as K-pop, Japako is for you

by Philip Gowman 9 March 2014
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I just received an email from Japako magazine in my inbox – a new magazine (available by preorder) that covers Korean and Japanese pop music and culture. There 2nd issue is available for preorder now, with a special deal to get the first issue as well. Here’s what they told me: Japako Music was founded […]

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Looking back at 2013: DPRK and regional news

by Philip Gowman 4 February 2014
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In our fourth review of 2013, we look at some of the North Korea related news, and stories which put the peninsula in a wider East Asian context. DPRK Google chairman Eric Schmidt, together with a former governer of New Mexico, had a four day trip to North Korea in January. “I’m still spinning my […]

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The Japanese YouTube campaign on Dokdo

by Philip Gowman 5 November 2013
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Wisely, the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs has disabled comments on their Dokdo propaganda video uploaded to YouTube a few days ago. Because otherwise they’d be deluged with some pretty hostile feedback. And not just from angry Koreans. The map they provide is downright misleading. To a viewer who knows nothing, it seems perfectly reasonable […]

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Looking back at 2012: DPRK and regional news

by Philip Gowman 25 January 2013
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In the third of four round-ups of things that caught our eye in 2012, we look back at some of the stories from the DPRK and Seoul’s external relations. DPRK The leadership transition proceeded smoothly, contrary to many observers’ expectations. Kim Jong-un showed that he had inherited his father’s expensive tastes, with a story that […]

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Looking back at 2012: Hallyu and entertainment news

by Philip Gowman 24 January 2013
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In the second of four round-ups of links to news which caught our eye in 2012, we focus on hallyu-related stories from around the world, some of the local entertainment industry stories plus a quick look at the film industry. UK. The Guardian put together an entertaining photoshop when London Mayor Boris Johnson claimed he […]

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