[KS] Now On My Way to Meet Who?

Shapiro karimunjawa at yahoo.com
Tue Nov 12 07:20:18 EST 2013


You're raising issues beyond my scope - I would argue that assimilation is simply expected from marginalized groups (if they're not happy being marginalized) - but there is a PhD candidate at Urbana-Champaign (http://www.lis.illinois.edu/people/students/jinseok-kim) who should be able to discuss the defectors' assimilation in South Korea. We brought him to IIT last year for a discussion about his social network-based methods when studying networks of North Korean defectors living in South Korea. It was preliminary work then, but he had already interviewed a number of defectors, highlighting the fact that they consider themselves second-tier in South Korea, hiding their accents, picking up Konglish, and keeping their past on the down-low. I'm not sure whether updates to this work will show that the networks are loose, i.e., that defectors are avoiding other defectors, but that wouldn't surprise me.

Matt Shapiro

On Tuesday, November 12, 2013 2:26 AM, Frank Hoffmann <hoffmann at koreanstudies.com> wrote:
To Hilary and Scott:

Maybe some 101 Marxist analysis (with an added ethnic awareness 
upgrade) will help. I know that is not too popular these days--and I 
sure get 3 computer-generated minus points in the NSA List for good 
behavior now, just for using the term alone, but well, it sometimes 
helps our observations from ending up as cultural attitudes. 

Hilary wrote:
>> (...) most would agree that the Korean brand of mc is one of 
>> assimilation.

Scott wrote:
>>  I think that "multiethnic" would be a more apt term than 
>> "multicultural," if the dominant model in South Korea is largely 
>> unidirectional assimilation into the South Korean collective and 
>> culture.

Yes, yes, the Borg are at work doing their usual assimilation, and Star 
Trek's multi-ethnic and multicultural colony is at risk. Look at Korean 
K-Pop Boy and Girl groups and you know how the colony will end up when 
the Collective has finished converting humans into drones. No, no, I 
think you are actually right about everything you pointed out.

Really the only point I wanted to suggest is looking at the question 
WHY and HOW the United States did become a multi-ethnic **and** 
multicultural country (vs. the 
multiethnic-but-culturally-unidirectional-assimilative Korean model). 
There are historic and economic reasons for that. There were tough 
fights to get there, and it were not the ethnic majorities fighting 
that fight. So, in Korea, when you have a 95% or larger majority of the 
same ethnicity, then who would possibly fight for a multi-ethnic 
**and** multicultural country. That just does not add up, that just 
does not make sense to me. Watching Star Trek in TV (or whatever it is 
these days), importing politically-feel-correct ideologies without the 
economic base CANNOT possibly lead to a multicultural society. That is 
a game of numbers, economics, and historical events, and I just do not 
see that. I would not even ask that question therefore, would not try 
to "compare" models that are not transferrable (not today, at least).


Frank Hoffmann
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://koreanstudies.com/pipermail/koreanstudies_koreanstudies.com/attachments/20131112/c9587559/attachment.html>

More information about the Koreanstudies mailing list