Eastern Learning and the Heavenly Way
The Tonghak and Chondogyo Movements and the Twilight of Korean Independence
Publication Year: 2014
Published by: University of Hawai'i Press
Series: Hawaii Studies on Korea
Title page, Copyright
This book is the result of several years of research through different stages. For help in the preliminary stages of research, greatest appreciation goes to Professor Martina Deuchler, who at that time was at the School of Oriental and African Studies of the University of London...
Along Chongno, the busiest street in Seoul’s crowded city center, is a park that is walled off from the hustle and bustle. It is called Pagoda Park (T’apkol kongwŏn), because of an ancient Buddhist pagoda located on the site. In this small piece of greenery where old men play chess and...
1. Early Tonghak and the 1894 Rebellion
Tonghak arose in the last half of the nineteenth century, a period of domestic and international turmoil in Korea and East Asia. Its founder, Ch’oe Che-u, started preaching his new religious ideas among peasants and marginalized members of the educated classes in southeastern...
2. A Time of Trouble, 1895–1900
Although the 1894 rebellion failed, it unleashed events that dramatically changed the social, political, and intellectual scene in Korea. Japan’s victory in the Sino-Japanese War of 1894–1895 led to a brief period of Japanese ascendancy in Korea. Between 1894 and...
3. Exile—Son Pyŏng-hŭi in Japan, 1901–1904
By 1901, Tonghak had recovered from most of the disarray caused by the failure of the 1894 rebellion. The leadership vacuum created by Ch’oe Si-hyŏng’s death in 1898 had been filled with the final confirmation of Son Pyŏng-hŭi as supreme leader of Tonghak in 1900. The...
4. Tonghak and the Ilchinhoe, 1904–1906
Tonghak was in a precarious position when the Russo-Japanese War broke out in 1904. Its continued illegal status as a result of the 1894 rebellion led to government repression and persecution, which hampered Tonghak’s efforts to rebuild and curtailed its ability to spread its...
5. Administrative Centralization and Leadership Struggles in Ch’ŏndogyo, 1906–1908
The announcement that proclaimed the name change from Tonghak to Ch’ŏndogyo on December 1, 1905, was the first step in a major reorganization of the religious movement that had been founded by Ch’oe Che-u in 1860. The renewal that occurred through the creation...
6. Doctrine, Ritual, and Social Action in Ch’ŏndogyo, 1906–1908
Tonghak’s reorganization into Ch’ŏndogyo was also accompanied by an intellectual and liturgical regeneration that supported Son Pyŏng-hŭi’s vision of a modernizing religious movement with a focus on social action. This led to a systematization of ritual and liturgy and...
7. Ch’ŏndogyo’s Activities before the Annexation, 1908–1910
Ch’ŏndogyo had been organized soon after the imposition of the protectorate regime by the Japanese. Much of its early organization therefore occurred during the years that eventually led to the full extinction of Korea’s sovereignty through annexation to Japan in August 1910...
Why did Tonghak and Ch’ŏndogyo have such an impact in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries? One reason is that although they were religious movements, adherence to Tonghak and Ch’ŏndogyo often had political and social implications as well. They were among the...