[KS] North Korea says multiracialism is poison (Afostercarter at aol.com)

Vladimir Tikhonov vladimir.tikhonov at ikos.uio.no
Sat Apr 29 10:32:41 EDT 2006

If I am not terribly mistaken, the first people to disseminate the 
Japanese translation-world for "race", 人種/じんしゅ (Kor. "injong") in 
Korea, were the pro-American early nationalists from Tongnip sinmun/The 
Independent. At first, their racialized vision of the world did not 
really differ from their reference points - obviously, the texts by 
Fukuzawa Yukichi and other "enlightenment thinkers", which SO Chaep'il 
devoured while in Japan in 1883-84, and American textbooks he studied 
later. So, Tongnip Sinmun's editorial for June 24, 1897, places the 
"white race" above all other races in the world, and several other 
editorials refer to the blacks in extremely disparaging way, using the 
term "hUngno" ("black slave" - continuously used in the 1900s, by 
Syngman Rhee among others). At the same time, there were lots of 
interest in the question of the "racial origins" of the Koreans - 
editorial for April 6, 1897, quoting E.Satow's opinion about Japan 
having been populated by the continental, mainly Korean, migrants, in 
the early times, came to the conclusion that "Ilbon chongja nUn pollae 
ChosOn eso on saram dUr eyo" - that is, the Japanese share their "racial 
origins" with Koreans. By 1899, Yun Ch'iho being the newspaper's editor, 
it became strongly Pan-Asianist in tone, with all the obvious references 
to the "unity" of "white" and "yellow" "races". Then, propagation of the 
racialized view of the world was continued in the 1900s by another 
nationalist newspaper published by strongly pro-Western Christian 
converts - the Taehan Maeil Sinbo. This newspaper combined the hope that 
USA would soon come to war with Japan with belief that marriages between 
Koreans and non-Koreans (mainly Chinese and Japanese were meant) hurt 
the development of patriotism of the children and should be prohibited 
("Naeoegugin sanghon Ui kagUm", - January 10, 1909). My point here is 
that domestication of racialized worldview in early modern Korea took 
place in the context of importation and "nativization" of the 
racist/racialist ideologies of both world and regional "core" 
(USA/Europe, Japan) by local modernizing elite. In this aspect, North 
Koreans hardly needed to learn from Hitler - they may as well draw upon 
Korean(ized) modernity's own, local tradition, in the form it took 
during the last century. By the way, it does not seem that the 
missionary education has done anything to contravene these 
racist/racialist assumption, and unabashed racism Yun Ch'iho and many 
other Korean modernizers experienced in the rudest possible form in the 
USA while studying there, only aggravated it - as well as, using Yun's 
own expression, "the failure of missionaries to practice what they 
preach in dealings with Koreans" inside Korea.

Vladimir Tikhonov (Pak Noja)

On 29.04.2006 04:42, Matthew Benuska wrote:
> Here's a copy of a translation of the article Aidan mentions at The 
> Marmot's Hole, along with some interesting commentary.
> http://www.rjkoehler.com/?p=2776
> http://www.kcna.co.jp/calendar/2006/04/04-28/2006-0427-017.html
> Thank s ,
> * Matthew Benuska *
> / "Patriotism, n.: Combustible rubbish ready to the torch of any one 
> ambitious to illuminate his name." --Ambrose Bierce (The Devil's 
> Dictionary) /

Vladimir Tikhonov,
Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages,
Faculty of Humanities,
University of Oslo,
P.b. 1010, Blindern, 0315, Oslo, Norway.
Fax: 47-22854828; Tel: 47-22857118
Personal web page: http://folk.uio.no/vladimit/
Electronic classrooms: East Asian/Korean Society and Politics:
                        East Asian/Korean Religion and Philosophy:

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