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Historical Globalization: Korea
Transcript of Historical Globalization: Korea
Japanese Colonial Rule (1910-1945)
Japanese colonialism was often quite harsh. For the first ten years Japan ruled directly through the military, and any Korean dissent was ruthlessly crushed. After a nationwide protest against Japanese colonialism that began on March 1, 1919, Japanese rule relaxed somewhat, allowing a limited degree of freedom of expression for Koreans.
The Road to Independence
The first step to independence for Korea is the "March 1st Movement."
On March 1, 1918, Thirty-three protestors gathered outside the Taehwagwan restaurant in Seoul. They read out the "Korean Declaration of Independence." They were later arrested by the police because they called them to inform them of their actions.
The road to Independence
The Legacy of Imperialism
Korea did not escape the Japanese grip until 1945, when Japan lay prostrate under the Allied victory that brought World War II to a close. The colonial experience that shaped postwar Korea was intense and bitter. It brought development and underdevelopment, agrarian(a person who favors the equal division of landed property and the advancement of agricultural groups)growth and deepened tenancy, industrialization and dislocation, and political mobilization and deactivation. It also made a new role for the central state, new sets of Korean political leaders, communism and nationalism, and armed resistance and treacherous collaboration. Above all, it left deep fissures and conflicts that have gnawed at the Korean national identity ever since.
To what extent are contemporary issues in developing countries the result of their colonial past?
Connecting the Present to a Colonial Past: Korea
By: Brandon, Caysie, Eunila & Bernyxe
Thanks for watching!
Despite the often oppressive and heavy-handed rule of the Japanese authorities, many recognizably modern aspects of Korean society emerged or grew considerably during the 35-year period of colonial rule. These included rapid urban growth, the expansion of commerce, and forms of mass culture such as radio and cinema, which became widespread for the first time. Industrial development also took place, partly encouraged by the Japanese colonial state, although primarily for the purposes of enriching Japan and fighting the wars in China and the Pacific rather than to benefit the Koreans themselves.
The Colonial Experience Cont.
But the wartime mobilization of 1937-45 had reintroduced harsh measures to Japanese colonial rule, as Koreans were forced to work in Japanese factories and were sent as soldiers to the front. Tens of thousands of young Korean women were drafted as “Comfort Women” - in effect, sexual slaves - for Japanese soldiers.
In 1939, Koreans were even pressured by the colonial authorities to change their names to Japanese names, and more than 80 percent of the Koreans complied with the name-change ordinance.
The Colonial Experience Cont.
By the time of the Japanese surrender in August 1945, Korea was the second-most industrialized nation in Asia after Japan itself.
The Japanese surrender to the Allies on August 15, 1945, which ended World War II, led to a time of great confusion and turmoil in Korea.
The country was divided into zones of occupation by the victorious Americans and Soviets, and various individuals and organizations across the political spectrum from Communists to the far Right claimed to speak for an independent Korean government. The Soviets and Americans failed to reach an agreement on a unified Korean government, and in 1948 two separate governments were established, each claiming to be the legitimate government of all Korea: the Republic of Korea in Seoul, in the American zone, and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea in Pyongyang, in the Soviet zone.
On June 25, 1950, North Korean forces invaded the South. The Korean War drew in the Americans in support of South Korea and the Chinese in support of the North.
In July 1953, after three years of bloody fighting in which some three million Koreans, one million Chinese, and 54,000 Americans were killed, the Korean War ended in a truce with Korea still divided into two mutually antagonistic states, separated by a heavily fortified “De-Militarized Zone” (DMZ). Korea has remained divided ever since.
One theory among people is that Korea was a very uncivilized country before Japan came and saved it. This theory is not a theory, but the truth. During the time, Korea was in the process of modernizing. However, their process was very slow and difficult.
Korea started signing treaties to help with the modernization of their country. The first treaty was signed with the USA in 1882 providing the ability to trade with each other. Another 6 treaties were signed with Germany, Britain, Russia, France, Italy and Austria-Hungry within a 6 year period.
While Korea was in the process of modernizing, Japan had its eye on the country. Korea had just signed many treaties with many European countries, this caused Japan to notice how they were modernizing and what aspects of western culture the country was incorporating.
Japan was also in its own period of modernization at the time. They were in great need of resources due to their country's industrialization. They needed iron, coal and oil, none which were found in great quantity on their homeland which made Japan want to invade Korea to use their resources.
"Those who do not learn about history are doomed to repeat it." - George Santayana
On August 15 1945, Japan surrendered to the allies. This was also the day where Koreans officially became independent as the United States, China and Great Britain agreed that if the allies claim victory , Korea will be able to become independent.
August 15 is currently an official holiday in Korea to celebrate it's country's independence.
The Legacy Of Imperialism
Colonialism was often thought to have created new countries where none existed before, to have drawn national boundaries, brought diverse tribes and peoples together, tutored the natives in self-government, and prepared for the day when the colonialist power decided to grant independence. But all this had existed in Korea for centuries before 19l0. Furthermore, by virtue of their relative proximity to China, Koreans had always felt superior to Japan and blamed Japan's devastating sixteenth-century invasions for hindering Korean wealth and power in subsequent centuries.
Koreans have always thought that the benefits of this growth went entirely to Japan and that Korea would have developed rapidly without Japanese help. Nonetheless, the strong colonial state, the multiplicity of bureaucracies(the body of officials and administrators, especially of a government or government department), the policy of administrative guidance of the economy, the use of the state to found new industries, and the repression of labor unions and dissidents provided a model for both Koreas in the postwar period. Japan showed them an early version of the "bureaucratic-authoritarian" path to industrialization, and it was a lesson that seemed well learned by the 1970s.
The Legacy Of Imperialism