history

Independence in Colonial Asia

To look at a map of colonial Asia is to see many colours. It is one with lines, shaded areas, dots on maps. These signify territories, treaty ports, zones of influence, railways, and other new introductions to a previously monarchical, rudimentary culture which had, in many respects developed of its own accord for thousands of […]

Reading the Korean War

 

I don’t profess to be an expert on much, such is my modesty. Even though I’ve lived in Korea for over nine years now and am invested in the country through family, I can’t really attest an authority on much of the country’s history. This is certainly an embarrassment as I’m supposed to be a history graduate.


One Nation, Under the Chaebol

sammsung

ONE NATION, UNDER THE CHAEBOL

by Third Bass

Aweek ago a friend passed on an intriguing post from the Global Voices website about a new piece of proposed legislation seeking to strike back at Korean consumers taking their business overseas. It appears that,  in order to skirt the significant markups on consumer electronics, younger consumers are increasingly utilizing overseas internet retailers such as Amazon, and this is creating quite a bit of consternation among the denizens of Korea Inc. For those that reside in the ROK, the atmospheric prices―relative to those in the U.S. at least―of computers, smartphones, speakers, autos, clothing, etc., is hardly shocking news. However, those unacquainted with shopping in Korea may be puzzled to learn that even Samsung, LG and Hyundai products sell at prices often two to three times greater than those charged in the U.S. market. In fact, one disgruntled Korean consumer cited in the story points to a Korean brand TV selling for roughly $5,900 in Korea and $1,550 in the U.S. This difference is stark. 


2,202 Days

By ISC Media Team

Contributors: Ben Cooper, Dae-Han Song, Kellyn Gross, Taryn Assaf

We are all leaders, not just as a collection of individuals, but as persons embedded in different kinds of institutions and communities of struggle. – Staughton Lynd

On November 9th, the ISC media team met with two women from the JEI workers union, Oh Suyeong and Yeo Minhee. They are union leaders in a six-and-a-half-year struggle against their employer, Jaeneung Educational Institution (JEI). The women’s recent struggle is a symbol of self-sacrifice for the special workers movement—one that is in the spirit of the venerable Jeon Taeil who self-immolated in 1970 on behalf of garment workers.


Duipuri- A Short Story

 by Kellyn Gross

“Geonbae!”

“Bottoms up.”

He raises his shot glass in the air, striking hers as she does the same. Soju spills, dripping onto a stained blue checkered tablecloth. A sudden laugh escapes her pursed lips. She downcasts her eyes and smooths her pants. Her pale make-up no longer conceals her flushed face.

“To us!” The young man brings the glass to his lips, and tilts his head back as he gulps the clear liquor. His plastic stool wobbles, and he clasps the round table to brace himself. Unsuccessful, he falls against the orange tent wall. A broad smile forms on his round face, and he gingerly places his glass down.

“To us.” A loose bun at the nape of her neck unfurls. She pats it with her left hand. The young woman sips down her drink and smirks.


Making Connections: An Expat’s Journey Through Korean History, Politics and Economics

By Taryn Assaf


Archiving

Over the past couple of weeks I have been busy going through old photographs from travels long since finished and uploading the to my flickrpage.


Hiking in Hanboks to Samseonggung Shrine 삼성궁

Roadtrippin!

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We took advantage of the beautiful weather one Saturday to head down to Jeolla-do, the south-west area of Korea. The fog seeped back into the mountains, the air smelled like dirt and trees, we moved through highways and roads that would leave us southbound. We were pleasantly surprised to find a persimmon farm.


Hwaseong Again

You’ve Got Seoul- Korean War Vet’s Spirit Buoyed by Pen Pal: Metro News

Remembrance Day is held in Canada every November 11th to pay homage to the sacrifices made by war veterans. Often forgotten is the Korean War, which claimed the lives of hundreds of Canadian soldiers. Overshadowed by both World Wars and the Vietnam War, Canada’s and Canadian’s role in the Korean War is often misunderstood and under-appreciated at Remembrance ceremonies. This article, published by Metro News Canada, tells the story of one Korean War veteran who’s personal path to peace involved a pen pal relationship with a Korean woman. The article gives a glimpse into the lives of Canadian Korean War veterans, and is a reminder that the effects of the Korean War are still felt by Canadians and Koreans alike. To read the article, please download here.


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