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∙ Ph.D. dissertation Neighborhood Shopkeepers in Contemporary South Korea: Household, Work, and Locality available online (E-Thesis publications a the University of Helsinki). For printed copies, please contact me by e-mail.
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Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The big northern electoral district

Back in the bad old days when the Soviet Union was happy to use the influence that Finns did not deny them in Finnish domestic policies (that was one facet of Finlandization), there was a term "great eastern electoral district" which of course alluded to the Soviet influence and wishes in Finnish elections.
The classic representation of that state of affairs was a cartoon by Kari Suomalainen of the party congress of the Center Party electing the presidential candidate in 1981. In the picture, all the representatives were reading Pravda, the speaker keeping the paper upside down, except for Johannes Virolainen who was reading the party newspaper Suomenmaa. Virolainen, who was not known to be a Soviet favorite, was elected with an overwhelming majority.

In the local elections to be held tomorrow on May 31 in the Republic of Korea, DPRK has not quite attained the position of the big northern electoral district, except that the positions its media have expressed must have had nothing but an adverse effect except for among the jucheist vanguard. (It should be noted that there have been attempts for the big northern electoral district effect by ROK politicians and parties of different persuasions before, like the "Northern Wind" affair or the campaineering before the last presidential election that choosing Lee Hoi-chang would bring war and mayhem to the peninsula.)

Noise for Voice of People has conveyed without any specific comment the encouragement by the "Committee for the Peaceful Unification of the Fatherland" that the southern brethren should give their ballots for the Our Open Party (OOP), since voting the Grand National Party (GNP) would be a vote for "war and national destruction" (chônjaengp'yo, manggukp'yo).

Kyunghyang Sinmun tells further that the southern representatives in the "South-North Student Conference for the Realization of the June 15 Declaration" in Kumgangsan on May 10-11 were told by the northern side that they should vote OOP.
They [DPRK] strongly requested (or demanded, yoch'ông) that the students should vote for OOP. The northern representatives said that "GNP which is close to USA must not win. GNP can be beaten by voting OOP. If you vote Democratic Labor Party (DLP) it can become a meaningless vote ("dead vote" sap'yo), so vote OOP even if you're a DLP member."
Looking at the prospects of the OOP success in tomorrow's election, the southern electorate is ready to vote for "war" and "national destruction." DPRK support for OOP cannot be but an additional piece of "frozen shit in the sleigh runner" as the people in my father's home region say about people and things which hinder things to happen.

Presenting the views of the ROK jucheists on the ROK elections does not give a balanced picture, but when has blogging been about that. For the first, the group perhaps the most immersed in the joys of jucheism, the Southern Chapter of the Pan-National Student Union for the National Unification (조국통일범민족청년학생련합 남측본부), tells that United States is behind the knife attack on Park Geun-hye, the head of GNP. (It cannot but be, because behind GNP is the US of A.) Our brave unificationists compare this to what happened in Ukraine, where the poisoning of Yushchenko was a result of a similar self-inflicted scheme! The Southern Chapter also has a fax from the Northern Chapter of the organization:
The Southern Chapter of the Pan-Korean Student Union was the vanguard that punished the anti-June 15 forces in the last 《presidential election》 and is the bright and sturdy pillar of the June 15 generation.
The southern youth and students must be acutely aware of the evil schemes of the reactionaries of history and give a stern punishment (chingbôl) to the anti-unificationist forces.
The Northern Chapter of the Pan-Korean Student Union is confident that the Southern Chapter will be again in the front in the struggle to prevent the anti-June 15 forces' plot to return to power.

The Northern Headquarters of the Pan-Korean Student Union
Pyongyang, May 28 2006.
(Translation AL, quotations marks as in the original)
How interesting by the way that DPRK writes the elections in ROK in quotation marks: 《지방선거》, 《선거》, 《대선》; they do seem to mind about parties and elections of political organs which for them are not representative of something.

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Saturday, May 27, 2006

"Not 'common people' but citizens"

So charming that Oranckay thought of me when he saw the column Sômini anira siminida ("Not 'common people' but citizens") and passed it on to me by email.

As has been the common occurrance especially since the administration of Kim Dae-jung who really seems to have made the term so central in Korean politics, the election time elevates the 'common people' (sômin/seomin) to the political agenda and has the politicians competing who best represents their interest. This time those two are Oh Se-hun and Kang Keum-sil, two jurists with 15 mil W monthly income, who are trying to convince voters that they know the komin (worries) of the sômin the best.
서민이 아니라 시민이다
‘서민’이라는 말이 원래 뜬구름과도 같은 것이다. 잡힐 듯 하면서도 구체적 모습이 잘 그려지지 않는다.
어찌 보면 이런 불가시성이 서민의 특징이다. 서민은 평소에는 보이지 않는 ‘투명인간’ 같은 존재다. 내세울 것도 없고, 하는 일도 눈에 띄지 않는다. 그러다가 선거철만 되면 자신의 의사와 무관하게 가시권으로 들어오는 것이다.
서민과 비서민을 가르는 경계도 불투명하다. 빈곤계층을 지칭하는지, 거기에 중산층을 더할 것인지, ‘강북’처럼 특정 지역도 포함하는 것인지 합의된 정의가 없다. 강금실-오세훈 서울시장 후보간의 난데없는 ‘서민논쟁’이 서민을 위해서 무얼 하겠느냐가 아닌, 서민이 과연 누구냐 하는 ‘국어사전 뒤지기’ 수준에 머물 수밖에 없는 이유다.
The rest of the column in Munhwa Ilbo.

Monday, May 22, 2006

유로비전 가요제, 우리나라 우승

유럽에서는 60년대초부터 해마다 열러 온 <유로비젼 가요제>가 있다. 유럽국립방송국연맹이 추진하는 이 대회에서 우승을 여러 번 한 나라는 아일랜드, 스웨덴 (1974년 아바 등) 등 인데, 핀란드는 우승은커녕 5등 이내에 한번도 못 했었다. 골찌를 가장 많이 한 나라는 아마 핀란드일 것이다. 노래를 부르지 못하기보다도 공연능력이 모자라고 음악전통이 다른 유럽과 다르다는 이유를 댈 수는 있다. 이번 주말에 모든 것이 확 달라졌다. 올해 유로비젼 가요제에서 역사상 최고 득표로 우승을 핀란드의 괴물럭그룹 <로르디>가 한 것이다. 차아암, 믿어지지도 않네. 이 국제적인 조국을 홍보하는 업적으로 대통령이 축하메시지를 보내고 총리가 <나도 헤비럭 좋더라>라는 발언을 발표하기도 했다. 생각만 해도 우슴이 나와. 웃기는 일이라서 나오는 게 아니라 믿어지지도 않은 황당함의 웃음이다.

우리나라 가요가 유럽풍조와는 잘 안 맞으니까 여기서 잘 하는 것으로, 그것도 조금만 오버하지 않은 쑈를 하는 밴드로 한번 해보자는 식으로 나갔으니, 이렇게 대박 터졌구만.

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Friday, May 19, 2006

article serial on Korean proper terms of address

Donga Ilbo published a 14-part serial on proper terms of address in early 2004 under the title "Let's call each other properly" (우리 서로 제대로 불러요). I missed it back then as I don't visit the Donga site practically at all, and got to know of it only when checking something else.

The serial is a wonderful example of the normative aspects of Korean language and language policies as well, and of the sense that something would be happening to how people call each other compared to the good old times when people knew their place in the family and society and terms of address and reference accordingly. The introduction of the serial:
Terms of address and reference are breaking down. Among couples terms like oppa [woman's older brother] and appa ("dad") are common, and there are women who call their husband appa in front of their children. There are also opposing voices. There are also a lot of those who would like to use terms of address and reference correctly but don't know how to, and there are those who know the correct terms but just find it difficult to use them. We print this article serial to show the advisable terms of address and reference.
The following quote is an example of how the problem is perceived:
Several surveys have shown that 20% of wives in their 20s and 30s call their husband oppa (older brother). On top of that, many called their husband oppa even if he was younger. Many specialists see that the level of the breakdown in the use of terms of address is severe. Especially the bad use (p'agoe) of terms of address in TV dramas has contributed to the breakdown. [translation AL]

Almost all of the articles are about terms of address between relatives, or as we anthros would say, about kinship terminology, which we have been so fond of and which has given us so much stuff to collect and analyse. And especially the Korean terminology is so good as there is so much of it and it's detailed and reflects the formal, ideological aspects of kinship, which may not find so much support in the lifestyles of contemporary Koreans. So there might be a sense of "collapse" when people are seeking new ways to express relations to their nearest people. Thinking how the principle of using specific terms of address and reference instead of personal names seems to be well intact despite of some terminology falling out of use or finding new contexts of use, the talk about "collapse" is premature, but if one thinks of proper use of terminology as a "ritual" expression of proper societal order and at the same time a "ritual" which creates that order, the collapsicist thinking makes some sense. My own view of this kind of terminology is of course descriptive or even perhaps analytical in some other places than blog notes, as I'm not in a position to give normative advice on these terms like the article serial is doing. These language masters tell not to use ajôssi ("uncle") when referring to one's husband; my task is to note that it is nevertheless used very widely, in certain contexts and among certain kind of people.

This is a table from the first article, which advises how husband and wife should address each other.
부부의 시기별 바람직한 호칭
신혼여보, ○○씨, 여봐요여보, ○○씨, 여봐요
자녀가 생기면여보, ○○아버지(아빠)여보, ○○엄마(어머니)
장 노년기여보, 영감, ○○아버지,
여보, 임자, ○○어머니(엄마), ○○할머니

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Wednesday, May 17, 2006

US rice doesn't taste good

Ohmynews tells ("Imported rice, won't eat even if cheap) that Korean housewives have found the import rice from the United States to be not tasty (or actually 7 out of 10; three didn't find much difference). I have no reason to doubt their judgement: people have developed a taste for a certain variety of rice (Japonica!), added with the cultural and political meanings of rice and Korean rice.

In one sense the piece of text ends up showing that opening the rice market won't be that dangerous after all: Korean rice will prevail because customers prefer its taste over the imported one. The writer doesn't expect that Korean men would contribute to the domestic choices of Korean households, but this is not the time for gender equality, right?
But more than that [product quality], there is one thing, and that is the minds of the housewives of Republic of Korea.
The pure (sobakhan) mind of the housewife of Republic of Korea, who wants to feed her parents, husband, and children with steamed rice made of the glistening (yunggi hûrûnûn) good-quality rice even if it's expensive.
And poor people can fill their stomachs with ramyon. And Koreans have been eating less and less rice even without imported varieties; what's it nowadays, two bowla a day or even less, while it was three bowls in the 1970s when rice finally was abundantly available.

(The price of the US rice that the writer used in her test was 17000 won for 10 kilos on the 8th, 15 000 W on the 15th, which makes it 2000W cheaper than the Korean stuff.)

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Tuesday, May 16, 2006

2006 annual conference of Korean Society for Cultural Anthropology

Yet another annual conference of Korean Society for Cultural Anthropology that I cannot participate in, this time in Chonbuk National University, Jeonju on May 19-20. The society has the conference leaflet in jpg format on its homepage, but the program is in a more easily digestible format on the Hanyang University anthro dept homepage. I have edited the program so that only the sessions, presentations and presenters appear:
제38차 한국문화인류학회 정기학술대회
현대 한국사회의 일생의례와 세시의례 - 변화와 지속
Life Stage Rituals and Seasonal Rites in Contemporary Korea
: Change and Continuity

제 1 일: 2006년 5월 19일 (금)

<현대 한국사회의 일생의례와 세시의례-변화와 지속>
1. “2000년대 도시 중산층의 출산문화: 문화변동의 장” / 김주희
2. “사회변동의 맥락에서 본 혼례의 변천” / 박부진
3. “화장, 집단묘지, 장례식장과 한국 상장례 문화의 변화” / 김시덕
4. “가정제례의 변용을 통해 본 현대 한국인의 가족관계와 젠더” / 문옥표
5. “경기도 둔터골의 세시 변화와 그 의미” / 강정원
6. “도시 명절제사의 규범과 실제: 사회적 시간성과의 관계를 중심으로” / 박성용

제 2 일: 2006년 5월 20일 (토)

<제1분과> 인디언 디아스포라: 형성ㆍ변화ㆍ네트워크
1. “정체성의 정치/인정의 정치: 캐나다 시크 사회를 중심으로” / 김경학
2. “두바이의 힌두 신디 상인 디아스포라” / 박정석
3. “두바이 체류 ‘재외 케랄라인(Non Resident Keralites)의 연망 연구” / 장용규

<제2분과> 주변인의 의례: 삶ㆍ죽음ㆍ전쟁
1. “여성의례의 연행성과 정치성: 일본군‘위안부’해원진혼굿을 중심으로”/김성례
2. “4.3 희생자와 국립묘지 안장자의 위령의례 비교” / 지영임
3. “마을어장을 둘러싼 제주 잠수들의 갈등과 의례” / 안미정

<제3분과> 시민사회를 향해 열린 인류학: 민중생활사 아카이브 활용방안
1. "실재 경험 세계로서의 민중생활사를 미디어에 집어넣는다는 것": 번역 가능성, 유효성, 정당성에 대한 고민 / 조경만
2. “시민들이 참여하는 생활사자료구축” / 함한희
3. “초중대학생들을 위한 교육커리큘럼” / 박규택
4. “디지털아카이브의 새로운 방향” / 박순철

<제4분과> 자유 주제
1. “동경 도정부와 다문화주의의 제도적 실험” / 한승미
2. “의료보호정책과 저소득층 빈곤문화의 변화” / 김명현
3. “잣모(定規植)의 확산과 변용: 식민지개량농법 수용의 단층들” / 안승택
4. “전쟁폭력 경험과 기억의 구술: 구례지역 한 마을의 사례” / 최호림

<제5분과> 걸프지역 여성의 지위 변화: 위성 TV의 영향을 중심으로
1. “위성 TV가 사우디아라비아 여성의 변화에 미치는 영향: 聖과 俗의 경계에 선 사우디 여성” / 조희선
2. “위성 TV가 쿠웨이트 여성의 변화에 미치는 영향” / 엄익란
3. “위성 TV가 오만 여성의 변화에 미치는 영향” / 김효정

<제6분과> 유구ㆍ오키나와 연구의 구도와 지평: 한국연구자의 성과를 중심으로
1. “여성과 민속 공간: 야에야마의 사례를 중심으로” / 최인택
2. “촌락제사의 전통과 지역문화: 오키나와 본도 사시키죠의 사례” / 강경희
3. “오키나와 ‘아만츄 신화’의 제 양상에 관하여” / 정진희 (서울대 국문학과 박사과정)
4. “촌락공유지의 변천을 통해서 보는 지역사: 오키나와 킨 지역의 사례” / 진필수

<제7분과> 축제의 변형과 사회적 의미
1. “도시 속에서 전통 동제의 변화와 재구성: 군산 중동 당제를 중심으로” / 이정덕
2. “사회적 토템으로서 몰입형 축제” / 김동영
3. “일상적 카니발 공간의 사회적 의미: 기혼남녀가 주로 이용하는 성인나이트클럽을 중심으로” / 장세길
4. “전통축제의 산업화, 순응인가 이탈인가: 전주 풍남제를 중심으로” / 진명숙

<제8분과> 현대인류학의 뉴프론티어
1. “국제관계 혹은 외교에 관한 인류학” / 채수홍
2. “문화유산의 인류학” / 박상미
3. “문화예술 소비ㆍ향유에 대한 인류학 연구의 모색” / 김민정
4. “과학(기술)과 사회, 그리고 인류학” / 오은정

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Monday, May 15, 2006

support for the right to protest

Voice of People conveys the message of support for the Korea University students who were expelled for good from the school after a confrontation during which they confined several university staff for 16 hours.
Message to victimized students at Korea University

Dear friends,
I have spoken at Korea University several times over the past decade, and am very appreciative of the hospitality and interest I have always enjoyed from the student population there. I was therefore shocked to learn of the expulsion or suspension of students for exercising their right to protest.

I call on the University administration to withdraw these measures and I declare my solidarity with the victimized students and their supporters. Good luck with your campaign!

With best wishes, Alex Callinicos,
Professor of European Studies, King's College London
Now does it seem that someone has failed to enlighten professor Callinicos of the circumstances of the incident and protesting methods, or is someone twisting facts so that "right to protest" includes not letting people go for 16 hours, or is someone just ignoring facts for a good effect?

Those who take the students' view at face value are free to believe what one of the expelled students says in a Kyunghyang Sinmun interview that "professors didn't actively show willingness to go home" even though the article points out that the student fails to provide a good answer to what makes 100 students blocking the way of the professors different from confinement.

Friday, May 12, 2006

changing the names of Sillim-dong and Bongcheon-dong?

I have missed the shocking but after all not surprising piece of news about the plans to change the names of Shillim-dong and Bongcheon-dong to something new, mostly in order to hide the image and the fact that these areas have been sites of vast and numerous hillside settlements (taltongne) and home for lots of poor people.

Chosun Ilbo has told about the plans of Gwanak-gu administration already on July last year; see also "Manmulsang" on thoughts and stories on those two dongs.

The idea of name change has been entertained and even attempted several times since the 1980s, but legislation always turned out to be the problem and city authorities never approved of the plans. Now that the local administration law has changed so that place name change can be decided on the local level when certain conditions are fulfilled, Gwanak-gu has begun to proceed.

Gwanak-gu administration had received a request for a name change on June 2, 2005 before the plans became public:
I am a resident of Daewoo Prugio [apartments] in Bongcheon 3-dong.
Now that many place names changes are taking place, my opinion is that Bongcheon-dong with its deeply ingrained hillside neighborhood image needs a new name. Even though it has become an area of big apartment blocks, property prices are falling because of the name. Even compared to Sillim-dong...
For example there's a 50 million won [42000€] difference in price between Sillim Prugio and us despite of similar circumstances.
After the anme change plans became more public on July 2005, Gwanak-gu administration received a lot of response and petitions in support, like this one from June 24, 2005:
I was happy to read the news that the name of Bongcheon-dong is going to change. Seoulites and Busanites as well, when hearing that you live in Bongcheon-dong, look at you as you were living in a shantytown. There are many neighborhoods which are much worse than Bongcheon-dong, but only that place is unfavorably thought of. Also people around me avoid answering or tell that they live in front of SNU when asked where they live. So I was really happy that the dong name will be changed, but then I read on the 22nd on Chosun Ilbo that Bongcheon bon-dong will be left as such and other dongs will get new names. Was the newspaper wrong or is that true? This is not fair. What have the Bongcheon bon-dong people done wrong?
Please don't exclude Bongcheon bon-dong from the effort to shed the image of a hillside neighborhood (taltongne). I also hesitate answering the question 'where do you live', and I don't want to hear people say 'oh, you live in a shantytown' any more.
On November 2005 the Gwanak-gu administration received a petition from a citizen to proceed with the dong name change plan, argued on the basis of the negative image of Bongcheon-dong and Shillim-dong, which "despite of being on the level of Gangnam as far as comforts of living are concerned, the image of the area is not good and the real estate prices do not go up because of the unfavorable image." (Reading the petition further, the citizen really isn't shy about her or his intention to get the housing prices rising.)

Gwanak administration answers among other things, that something is going on in regard to the name change. Since 1995, there has been three attempts or plans to change the names, but to no avail due to administrative and technical difficulties.
At the moment the opinion for a name change among the residents is strong, and on August 2005 a public hearing for about the district name change , and on November 2005 information events in each dong were held, residents' opinion survey at the end of 2006 will be done, after which a proposal for dong name change is expected to come out. [Bad translation A.L.]

Herald Kyôngje written just recently on the topic, mentioning also cases of subway stations in which name change has already been done: Guro Gongdan --> Guro Digital Danji, Garibong --> Gasan Digital Danji.

A pic from an entry two years ago which should show what kind of a change has taken place in Bongcheon-dong.

Updates will follow.

Categories at del.icio.us/hunjang:

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

KBS interviews with North Koreans

Via a posting in the Jinbonuri discussion board (meant to upset the DPRK-minded who hang out there) I learned about a recent KBS program called KBS Report: North Korea in 2006 - is it Being taken over by Chinese capital.

Looking at the five themes introduced on the program webpage, it is mainly about the ongoing encroachment of Chinese products and capital into DPRK and its increasing economic dependence on China.
1. What's happening in the downstream of Yalu, between Dandong and Sinuiju?
2. What's being exchanged in North Korean markets
3. Why have the Chinese products taken over the North Korean market?
4. Has China seized only the North Korean consumer market?
5. What does the increasing economic dependence of the North Korean economy on China mean for Korean peninsula?
Not being able to see the program as it's not available on the site "due to copyright issues", the best and most interesting piece of it that I've gotten hold of are the numerous screen captures linked in the Jinbonuri posting, of which I'll reproduce and translate some here, with some additional info like the interviewee's home place which doesn't show in these captures. Several of the captions I've translated below are from pics that I don't show here; they don't contain any additional info besides the interview caption.

Good background to what these people tell, especially the Pyongyang woman, is Andrei Lankov's "Another Korea" column Market Forces:
[...] The old socialist state-managed economy is almost dead, and the ongoing economic activity is largely private in nature. But the new North Korean capitalism of dirty market places, charcoal trucks, and badly dressed vendors with sacks of merchandise on their backs demonstrates one surprising feature: it has a distinctly female face. Indeed, women are overrepresented in the growing North Korean post- Stalinist economy. [...]

Citizen of Northern Hamgyong:
Even if there are rations, they are given only to farm members. How can a family with this many children survive?

Factories, companies, nothing is operating.

So, all the factories and companies are idle because there are no orders to do. All the places are idle, all.

Pyongyang citizen:
[Previous screen] The common people's perception is that we can live because of China.
Why? -Because it's Chinese that we eat and use and live on. So that's why we can live because of China.

There's no way to live without trading (changsa). Nowadays almost everyone is doing it. Now you can't live if don't trade.

What you're supposed to get from the government is some 2000, 3000 won a month, -

but you can't live on that in Pyongyang.

[For comparison, monthly wages in the Kaesong plant have been reported to be around 6000 won, and there've been reports of 4000-4500 won as well.]

Every year it's unification, it's strong and great nation, it's the arduous march and all that -

and let's just endure, let's overcome the difficulties, it's been this kind of propaganda for two years now.

But now there's none of that any more. They [authorities?] let us do what we want.

All I think is how I could succeed in trading and feed our family. I have no expectations [on the government?].

(Sariwon citizen)
Factories... In our Sariwon factories are almost at halt.

This year there's been no rations, and last year on October 10 (Worker's Party foundation anniversary) -

And after that at the end of the year, on February 16 (Kim Jong-il's birthday), and on April 15 (Kim Il-sung's birthday) a bit was given.

Cooked rice is eaten on children's birthdays and on festive days.

We have corn (oksusu) there, and foodstuffs made of that, corn flour and chinssal [?] made of ground corn.

Vegetables (namul) is put in there (to cook porridge). Poor families eat like that.

Have you seen rice or fertilizers from South Korea (Namchosôn)?
Is it given as rations?

I haven't gotten any rations, we buy all our food.
There are (rice) sacks and fertilizer where it's written Republic of Korea (Taehan Min'guk). We buy that, from the marketplace (changmadang).

Because there are no materials. We need to import all the raw materials.

But are there any dollars? Is there economy to speak of? (Or, "DPRK is broke, right?", kyôngjega issûmnikka?). So, nothing is functioning.

Categories at del.icio.us/hunjang:

Friday, May 05, 2006

del.ico.us category/tag script

del.icio.us, which I've for a few days now used for categorizing posts here, also has a tagroll system, "a way for you to display your del.icio.us tags as part of your website."

The result shows on the left sidebar: it doesn't appear similarly with the rest of the sidebar, but you can't have everything can you, when the script updates the tags (categories) and shows the number of entries.

Categories at del.icio.us/hunjang:


Via Ainslie Days, kept by a fella who goes by the name Roald in certain other circles, comes this riot of a blog:

Categories at del.icio.us/hunjang:

Thursday, May 04, 2006

The 3rd World Congress of Korean Studies

Via the Korean Studies list, a call for papers for The 3rd World Congress of Korean Studies on October 27-30, 2006 in Cheju National University in Jeju. (Yes, that's Cheju university in Jeju, just like Pusan film festival in Busan or Puchon film festival in Buchon)
New phenomenon of cultural exchange called ‘Korean Wave’ has recently emerged across the world. However, there has been a stream of cultural exchanges with foreign countries throughout Korean history indeed. Academic discussions in the congress are expected to deepen our understanding of the background, stages, patterns, and influence of the cultural interactions, which will ultimately contribute to the promotion of mutual understanding and collaboration in the global community.
All good, but one can't help smiling when seeing the contact email address, lovekorea@aks[...]. Seems that the mail id has been created for this conference alone. Sure we all love Korea, and no one's surprised that a government-funded organization is there to further the policy goals of the funding government, but shouldn't there be at least a clout of seriousness? Or perhaps it's me who's being too serious here. Only that it doesn't seem likely that the folks at Academy of Korean Studies (AKS) had been ironic when choosing the id. At least it's not koreapia@[...]

The conference itself will surely be a fine event, even though ;) I won't be able to attend. There doesn't seem to be any DPRK involvement this time, which I must tell is fortunate, considering the experiences from the 2nd "world" congress of Korean Studies which took place in Pyongyang in 2004. DPRK refused the entry of ROK scholars and the agreed co-sponsorship of the AKS on the pretext of some political thing, which made AKS and other non-DPRK organizations to withdraw (see Dr Leonid Petrov's homepage for more details). What's the point in cooperation if the DPRK presence puts limits on conference topics, or when a reasonable view on DPRK is met with accusations of insulting the Dear Leader and other abuse.

Categories at del.icio.us/hunjang:

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

experiment with categories

I have experienced with one method of using del.icio.us for Blogger categories (explained here). It's a Java script (bookmarklet?) that makes tags for Technorati and del.icio.us, to which the categories then pile up and link back and forth to Blogger.
When you write your next blog post, click on the tagmaker bookmarklet, enter keywords that refer to the post (separated by a space only), click OK when you're done. The bookmarklet will automagically select the code for you to copy, & then you can paste the resulting code into your post.

Your post is tagged. Now publish it & go to the permalinked post page for your new tagged post.

Copy the keyword tags out of the post and then select the del.icio.us post bookmarklet. Add the same tags that you put on the post to the form, removing the commas if necessary, and save your blog post on del.icio.us.

The category links that I have in the side bar to the left I've just done directly to the Blogger template; there seems to be scripts for more technically savvy ways to do it, but by now I'm fine with that.

Now I have one question to native or near-enough-native speakers of English: is at the correct preposition to have in "Categories at del.icio.us/hunjang"?

Categories at del.icio.us/hunjang:

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Hangul Viewer 2002, 2005

(Update, February 16, 2009: the old Hangul 2007 link has been replaced by a new one, and references to Hangul 2005 viewer have been omitted.)

(Update, May 5, 2008: the Hangul Viewer 2005 link has been replaced by a link to the newest Hangul Viewer 2007.)

I get constant visitors via Google searching for a way to open Hangul (hwp) files. The link to the Hangul Viewer 2002 that I've kept in the sidebar has gotten obsolete who knows how long ago, and Haansoft has also released Hangul Viewer 2005, so it's time to update the links.

alternative link to download Hangul Viewer 2002 (English installing, English menus)

Hangul Viewer 2007 download page: the download page is in Korean, and the downloadable Viewer also has only Korean-language menus. To download the Viewer, click the disk icon. Unfortunately, English-language Hangul Viewer 2007 doesn't seem to exist.