[KS] NEAC/Korea Foundation grants/fellowships announcements

J.Scott Burgeson jsburgeson at yahoo.com
Tue Jan 13 23:29:38 EST 2004

--- Hyung Pai <hyungpai at eastasian.ucsb.edu> wrote:
> Dear members,
> I would like to remind the Korean studies community
> that there are many grants available for this year. 
> There are many listings for both  graduate students 
> scholarships as well as short term research 
> travels,  conference proposals, curriculum 
> development and to invite speakers to your campus. 

   Can I ask why foundations that give grants in the
field of Korean Studies consider critics to be
"illegitimate" candidates for grants? I have been a
professional critic for 13 years and have published
two books of criticism in Korea (both translated into
Korean), yet whenever I inquire about grants for
Korean language-study assistance, I am always told
"Don't even bother to apply because you're not an
academic." Ditto for any publishing or research
assistance. Korea Foundation and many others have
consistently told me this. I know that various artists
and adoptees, etc. also receive grants, but critics
always seem to fall between the cracks. I would like
to know why 13 years of professional experience as a
writer and public intellectual, and 6 years in Korea
(including invitations to guest lecture at Seoul Nat'l
University, Yonsei and Hanyang), is considered
illegitimate next to, say, 2 or 3 years for a graduate
   Clearly, it is a short-sighted strategy to view
critics and other independent scholars this way,
because their commentary on Korean culture generally
reaches much wider audiences than academics--thereby
promoting greater understanding of the culture--and
deserves to be supported in order to ensure that it is
more rigorous and informed through opportunities to
study the language, pursue research and so forth.
   Any thoughts on this institutional bias from the
   --J. Scott Burgeson

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