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Cultural Nationalism in Colonial Korea, 1920-1925

by Michael Edson Robinson

Publication Year: 2014

Published by: University of Washington Press


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Title Page, Series Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. vii-viii


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pp. ix-x

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Preface to the 2014 Edition

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pp. xi-2

The research for Cultural Nationalism was done largely in the mid- 1970s, reflecting my training in political science theory based on structuralist understandings of nationalism’s antecedents. The book thus does not utilize the vocabulary that evolved in the late 1980s to describe nationalism as a constructed notion, nor was I aware...

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pp. 3-13

On March First, 1919, the Korean nation awoke, it seemed, from a decade-long sleep. On that day hundreds of thousands of Koreans from all walks of life joined in demonstrations to declare Korea's natural right for independence from Japanese rule. Brilliantly organized and pacifist in intent, the March First demonstrations led to sustained rioting throughout the torrid Korean summer that year...

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1. Modern Korean Nationalism

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pp. 14-47

Korean nationalism was born in the fifty years that preceded the fall of the Yi dynasty and the advent of Japanese rule after 1910. Initially, nationalism in Korea was a response to an international threat to the traditional political and social order of the Yi dynasty. At one level, the Yi dynasty elite sought to preserve Korean political autonomy and...

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2. The Rise of Cultural Nationalism

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pp. 48-77

If 1910-19 had been a dark period for the Korean nationalist movement, 1920-25 was, in contrast, a true renaissance. The events of March 1919 seemed to augur a host of opportunities, and exiled nationalists redoubled their efforts to organize a unified movement. The formation of the Shanghai Provisional Government (SPG) in the...

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3. Within Limits: Moderate Nationalist Movements

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pp. 78-106

Between 1920 and 1925, three movements emerged to address specific concerns delineated in the debate over national reconstruction. Responding to inequities and inadequacies of the colonial education system, the Society for the Creation of a National University (Minnip taehak kisong chunbihoe), established in November 1922, organized a...

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4. The Radical Critique of Cultural Nationalism

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pp. 107-136

The post-World War I era was a time of tremendous intellectual ferment in East Asia. The Versailles conference elevated expectations among Korean and Chinese nationalists alike by propagating the broad tenet of self-determination as a solution to conflicting demands for national autonomy and independence around the world...

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5. Intellectual Crisis in Colonial Korea

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pp. 137-156

Clearly, the ambiguity of the cultural nationalist line with regard to Japanese rule was a major problem within the movement. If gradualist tactics necessitated a long period of national development, what, then, should be done about the issue of national independence? Certainly this should be the primary goal for all nationalists, and its resolution...

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6. Conclusion

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pp. 157-166

While acknowledging the obvious fact that the Korean nationalist movement was unable to overthrow Japanese rule, it is often claimed that the by-product of the unsuccessful drive for independence was the creation of a strong national identity. This is correct if one assumes that hatred and loathing of Japanese rule was the main component of...


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pp. 167-190

Guide to Romanization

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pp. 191-196


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pp. 197-212


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pp. 213-217

E-ISBN-13: 9780295805146
E-ISBN-10: 0295805145
Print-ISBN-13: 9780295993898
Print-ISBN-10: 0295993898

Publication Year: 2014

OCLC Number: 880453592
MUSE Marc Record: Download for Cultural Nationalism in Colonial Korea, 1920-1925

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Subject Headings

  • Nationalism -- Korea -- History -- 20th century.
  • Nationalists -- Korea -- History -- 20th century.
  • Intellectuals -- Korea -- History -- 20th century.
  • Korea -- History -- Japanese occupation, 1910-1945.
  • Korea -- Politics and govenrment -- 1910-1945.
  • Korea -- Intellectual life -- 20th century.
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