recentpopularlog in

aries1988 : korea   60

The Korean Health Club: A Cultural Trial by Fire, Ice, and Nakedness – BLARB
When I brought up the hot tub conversation later with Garam’s family, they laughed and assured me that he must have said “mo-shid-da” (멋있다) , meaning “handsome,” a difference of just one vowel, easy to mishear without context. A whole lot better than “delicious,” I thought, but still a weird thing to say in the hot tub.

I reflected in disbelief on the fact I had survived, and to a degree enjoyed, this wonderful and completely embarrassing experience, and left the helseu with my body clean — and my privacy violated as never before.
fun  korea  gym  gaijin  bath  bain 
october 2018 by aries1988
Soju, Beer Pong, and the Romance of Cultural Exchange (or the Cultural Exchange of Romance) – BLARB
As Garam introduced me to Korean food gradually during that first semester, I acquired a taste for the fundamentals. The first meal, and the one we would share most often thereafter at the circular table in her kitchen, centered around dwenjang jigae (된장 찌개), a heartier version of the miso soup you would find in a Japanese restaurant. She served it with rice, a stack of business-card-sized seaweed papers, soy sauce, and a small mound of kimchi. When I saw her meal laid out on the table in eight small dishes for two people, I became ashamed and defensive about my first attempt to cook for her: a deluxe frozen DiGiorno’s pizza. (But it was deluxe!)

Garam was impressed with my chopstick skills, which she claimed were better than hers. I held the chopsticks so they formed a V shape, whereas she held them so they formed an X. She also explained that, while Japanese use cylindrical chopsticks and Chinese use square chopsticks, Koreans use flat ones.
korea  food  usa  love  story  tradition  drinking  home 
october 2018 by aries1988
Meeting Her Parents, Meeting Her Country: an American's Taste of Korea
Garam returned with a triangle-shaped, seaweed-wrapped rice ball, and a short, rotund beverage container full of banana-flavored milk. She handed me the ball and explained how to open it: you were supposed to pull the tab marked “1” on the the back of the plastic wrapper which bisected the triangle, then you gently tugged on the corner marked “2” to remove half of the plastic wrapper, pulling next on the corner marked “3” to remove the rest of the wrapper.

Pleased with my triangular snack, I tried the banana milk, which made me question why it had taken me until the age of 24 to discover such a taste halfway around the world from my native country.
gaijin  korea  anecdote  food  plane 
september 2018 by aries1988
Talk Like a Busanian: How to Master the Ever-Trendier Dialect of Korea’s Brash Second City – BLARB
To many Koreans, a Seoul accent came to betoken savvy and sophistication, while any of the country’s other regional accents, let alone a full-on Busan saturi, marked one out as a hopeless bumpkin. This despite the ongoing development of Busan itself, which with its six beaches, its slick high-rises, its respectable mass transit system, its robust food culture, and its world-beating film festival (not to mention its possession of the largest Korean spa in the world), would if transplanted to America easily rank among its most splendid cities.
from:rss  korea  dialect  fun  Busan 
september 2018 by aries1988
seoul_wave - YouTube
Brandon Li
Published on Aug 5, 2018
I spent a month in Seoul and saw a city racing to the future. Here's the film I made with the help of the great people I met along the way.
korea  portrait  video  nation  korean 
august 2018 by aries1988
The Korean War in Pictures - The New York Times
Roughly 25 percent of the North’s population was believed to have been killed in the war.
korea  war  photo  1950s 
april 2018 by aries1988
[Weekender] Time travel across modern Korea through food

Budding economy, sticky rice

Slurping jajangmyeon through social change

Before Facebook, there was tteokbokki

Fried chicken and online serenity
food  korea  history  generation  millennials  moi  school  list  bestof 
february 2018 by aries1988
Recette de cuisine Marmiton
korea  bbq  recette  boeuf 
january 2018 by aries1988
The Interpreter
(1) It’s over. We failed. North Korea is a nuclear power now.
2017  korea  asia  crisis  usa  war  nuclear  military  success 
november 2017 by aries1988
Song Ma on Twitter
movie  korea  history  manchuria 
november 2017 by aries1988
Rocket Man Knows Better - The New York Times
It is a criminal enterprise focused on long-term survival, far more adept at enslaving its people than fighting big-boy wars.

Sadly, the United States has largely forgotten the lessons of the Korean War, even though that conflict cost the lives of more than 33,000 American combatants. The causes of this collective amnesia are varied: The Korean War ended in an inglorious tie that was impossible to celebrate. It produced no Greatest Generation myths and few memorable movies. Then came Vietnam — the first war to be truly televised, a war that is still being parsed on public television. Vietnam seared itself into our literary and cinematic culture, blotting out Korea, the Forgotten War.

After a halting and discouraging start that cost the lives of thousands of G.I.s, the American war machine became a murderous, unstoppable force. Using bombs and napalm, the United States Air Force blew up and burned down virtually every population center in North Korea. Gen. Curtis LeMay, head of the Strategic Air Command during the Korean War, estimated that “over a period of three years or so, we killed off — what — 20 percent of the population.” That’s about 1.9 million people.

Vast numbers of Chinese troops died to save North Korea from Kim’s bloody mistake; they kept his regime from becoming a footnote in Asian history.
history  korea  war  1950s  mao  usa  2017 
september 2017 by aries1988
A Murderous History of Korea

Kim’s reputation was inadvertently enhanced by the Japanese, whose newspapers made a splash of the battle between him and the Korean quislings whom the Japanese employed to track down and kill him, all operating under the command of General Nozoe Shotoku, who ran the Imperial Army’s ‘Special Kim Division’.

A vital figure in the long Japanese counterinsurgency effort was Kishi Nobusuke, who made a name for himself running munitions factories. Labelled a Class A war criminal during the US occupation, Kishi avoided incarceration and became one of the founding fathers of postwar Japan and its longtime ruling organ, the Liberal Democratic Party; he was prime minister twice between 1957 and 1960.

Kim Il-sung and Kishi are meeting again through their grandsons. Eight decades have passed, and the baleful, irreconcilable hostility between North Korea and Japan still hangs in the air.

The demonisation of North Korea transcends party lines, drawing on a host of subliminal racist and Orientalist imagery; no one is willing to accept that North Koreans may have valid reasons for not accepting the American definition of reality.

Congress and the American people knew nothing about this. Several of the planners were Japanophiles who had never challenged Japan’s colonial claims in Korea and now hoped to reconstruct a peaceable and amenable postwar Japan.

They worried that a Soviet occupation of Korea would thwart that goal and harm the postwar security of the Pacific.

it was no surprise that after a series of South Korean incursions into the North, full-scale civil war broke out on 25 June 1950.

South Korea’s stable democracy and vibrant economy from 1988 onwards seem to have overridden any need to acknowledge the previous forty years of history, during which the North could reasonably claim that its own autocracy was necessary to counter military rule in Seoul. It’s only in the present context that the North looks at best like a walking anachronism, at worst like a vicious tyranny.
war  korea  origin  disaster  nuclear  usa  explained  instapaper_favs 
september 2017 by aries1988
The Risk of Nuclear War with North Korea

the two men making the existential strategic decisions were not John F. Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev but a senescent real-estate mogul and reality-television star and a young third-generation dictator who has never met another head of state. Between them, they had less than seven years of experience in political leadership.

From time immemorial, there is a tradition of giving foreigners the best service, Pak explained. The No. 1 thing is to protect them, unless they are spies or enemies.

George W. Bush refused bilateral negotiations, then switched tacks and convened what are known as the Six-Party Talks.

Pyongyang is a city of simulated perfection, without litter or graffiti—or, for that matter, anyone in a wheelchair. Its population, of 2.9 million, has been chosen for political reliability and physical health. The city is surrounded by checkpoints that prevent ineligible citizens from entering.

Physically, he transformed himself into a near-reincarnation of his grandfather, Kim Il Sung, who was much more popular than Kim Jong Il. He bore a natural likeness to his grandfather, and, to accentuate it, he gained weight, cut his hair in a shorn-sided pompadour, and began wearing horn-rimmed glasses and a panama hat. (When foreign media suggested that he had undergone surgery to enhance the similarity, the state news agency condemned the speculation as sordid hackwork by rubbish media.)

So the Wall Street Journal is conservative? he asked. The editorial page is conservative, I said, but the news coverage is straight.

For him, basketball was everything. Kim drew pictures of Michael Jordan and slept with a basketball, according to Ko Yong Suk, the aunt who cared for him. She took him skiing in the Alps, swimming on the French Riviera, and to the Disney park in Paris. He showed flashes of stubbornness. If he was scolded for not studying, he’d refuse to eat. He wasn’t a troublemaker, but he was short-tempered, Ko told the Washington Post last year. (She and her husband defected to the U.S. and now run a dry-cleaning business, under assumed names.)

Dean Rusk, who later became Secretary of State, recalled, in an oral history in 1985, that the United States bombed every brick that was standing on top of another, everything that moved. General Curtis LeMay, the head of the Strategic Air Command during the Korean War, told the Office of Air Force History in 1984, Over a period of three years or so, we killed off—what—twenty per cent of the population.
korea  history  war  crisis  2018  interview  usa 
september 2017 by aries1988
How to Deal With North Korea

The myth holds that Korea and the Kim dynasty are one and the same. It is built almost entirely on the promise of standing up to a powerful and menacing foreign enemy. The more looming the threat—and Trump excels at looming—the better the narrative works for Kim Jong Un. Nukes are needed to repel this threat. They are the linchpin of North Korea’s defensive strategy, the single weapon standing between barbarian hordes and the glorious destiny of the Korean people—all of them, North and South. Kim is the great leader, heir to divinely inspired ancestors who descended from Mount Paektu with mystical, magical powers of leadership, vision, diplomatic savvy, and military genius. Like his father, Kim Jong Il, and grandfather Kim Il Sung before him, Kim is the anointed defender of all Koreans, who are the purest of all races. Even South Korea, the Republic of Korea, should be thankful for Kim because, if not for him, the United States would have invaded long ago.

And with only a few of its worst weapons, North Korea could, probably within hours, kill millions. This means an American first strike would likely trigger one of the worst mass killings in human history.

If mass civilian killings were not a factor—if the war were a military contest alone—South Korea by itself could defeat its northern cousin. It would be a lopsided fight. South Korea’s economy is the world’s 11th-largest, and in recent decades the country has competed with Saudi Arabia for the distinction of being the No. 1 arms buyer. And behind South Korea stands the formidable might of the U.S. military.

They are believed to have tunnels stretching under the DMZ and into South Korea. Special forces could be inserted almost anywhere in South Korea by tunnel, aircraft, boat, or the North Korean navy’s fleet of miniature submarines.

They could wreak havoc on American and South Korean air operations and defenses, and might be able to smuggle a nuclear device to detonate under Seoul itself.

Kim Jong Un, with his bad haircut and his legion of note-taking, big-hat-wearing, kowtowing generals, would be gone. South Korea’s fear of invasion from the North, gone. The menace of the state’s using chemical and biological weapons, gone. The nuclear threat, gone.

Kim may end up trapped in the circular logic of his strategy. He seeks to avoid destruction by building a weapon that, if used, assures his destruction.

Since I have been living here for so long, I am not scared anymore, said Gwon Hyuck-chae, an elderly barber in Munsan, about five miles from the DMZ. Even if there was a war now, it would not give us enough time to flee. We would all just die in an instant.
korea  2017  diplomacy  asia  usa  war  politics 
july 2017 by aries1988
How Japan is preparing for a nuclear attack

One of the US’s biggest business groups, for example, polls its members each quarter about how company executives perceive geopolitical risks. Until very recently, a minute proportion of companies considered North Korea to be the most serious threat; instead, the dominant focus for concern was so-called Islamic State.

Yet the pattern is changing. In the most recent survey, compiled this month, North Korea is ranked as the number one threat, above Isis. But most voters still know little about the country, and few realise that American troops in Japan or California might be a target.

Confronting a possible missile threat looks scary but it’s not necessarily any more frightening than the knowledge that more than 33,000 people are killed by gunfire each year in the US. Cultural perceptions of danger vary.
story  japan  usa  korea  war  nuclear  perception  world 
may 2017 by aries1988
The New Koreans by Michael Breen — danger and dynamism
Intriguingly, as with China, the local name of the country is not the same as that used by outsiders. “Korea” derives from the Goryeo dynasty heard of by Marco Polo; Koreans themselves call the country Hanguk or Chosun depending on whether they are from the south or the north.

He is in awe of the achievements of a country that turned itself from one of the world’s poorest into one of the richest in half a century, and has reached 100 per cent literacy from a mere 20 per cent in 1945. The author comes across as a friendly uncle who sits you down in an armchair with a cup of tea — or perhaps a beer — and tells you all the interesting things he knows about the admirable if sometimes frustrating Korea of today.
korea  book  asia  politics  explained  history 
may 2017 by aries1988
Beijing’s dangerous mix of trade and security
Foreign corporations operating in China have never enjoyed a simple or easy life. But things have suddenly become much harder for South Korean companies trading in the Middle Kingdom: they appear to have been set the task of changing their own government’s security policies as a condition of doing business.

That is the impression given by Chen Hai, a Chinese foreign ministry official who visited Korean companies last week. As reported in the Financial Times, Mr Chen warned them that their business in China would suffer if the South Korean government deployed a US ballistic missile shield designed to protect against North Korean aggression.
january 2017 by aries1988
The president, the shaman and the scandal engulfing South Korea
A common refrain, for those seeking a silver lining is that the country is no stranger to crisis. Born out of the ashes of conflict and on a permanent war footing, it has faced pivotal moments on a near 20-year cycle. The most recent, the Asian financial crisis, struck in 1997.

Out of each crisis, the situation for South Koreans has always improved, says Kim Woo-chan, a professor at Korea University. A coup in 1961 led to the transformation of the poverty-stricken economy, while the assassination of Park Chung-hee in 1979 resulted in a more market-focused approach. The 1997 crisis prompted many of the chaebol to change the way they are run and ease their reliance on debt.

The hope is that the current crisis will yield a healthier democracy and a leader strong enough to enforce economic, political and corporate reforms.

“We are very resilient,” says Prof Kim. “I feel confident that if people keep showing up to protest in these numbers and keep showing their power and influence, the politicians will have no choice [but to clean up politics].”
korea  2016 
november 2016 by aries1988
Seoul’s street food gets classy

my favourite course is his raw beef and sour pear, served with the yolk of a quail egg and eaten on small blinis made with squid-ink powder: his twist on Gwangjang’s yukhoe, and a fitting tribute.
korea  restaurant  gastronomy  seoul 
september 2016 by aries1988
Seven strange days in North Korea —
Renowned North Korea expert Andrei Lankov has described the anachronistic Soviet-style parades and night-time torch rallies as “like watching the mating season of dinosaurs”. But there is something deeply disturbing about the goose-stepping automatons, screaming acolytes and tears of ideological fervour.
dprk  korea  reportage 
june 2016 by aries1988
Seoul Celebrates the Home of an American Hero
The home of Albert Wilder Taylor, an American journalist hailed in South Korea for breaking the news of the 1919 revolt against the Japanese, is being restored for the centennial.
korea  history 
march 2016 by aries1988
Please Cancel Your Vacation to North Korea
Americans don’t get dictatorships. They don’t know to be afraid.
story  korea  state  police 
march 2016 by aries1988
How victory for Google’s Go AI is stoking fear in South Korea
A nation of Go players, South Korea feels Google’s victory more clearly than anyone else. How can a computer shake up a whole country?
korea  ai 
march 2016 by aries1988
Kim Jong-un’s Generational Ambitions
But having covered previous North Korean nuclear tests, I know the script: International outrage, emergency meetings and sanctions will follow in close suit. And as debate continues in regional capitals about what to do about the defiant North Koreans, their rock-star scientists will keep building better and more powerful nuclear weapons.

here is a small nation where the people are dancing in the streets celebrating the supposed creation of a bomb with the potential to exterminate whole cities. Footage of North Koreans cheering as they watched the news announced at noon local time Wednesday was like a scene out of an old Cold War movie, so anachronistic in this globalized era that the only response that makes any sense is to think the North Koreans are crazy.

C.I.A. estimates put it at roughly $1,800 per capita, on par with some of the poorest nations in the world. Geographically, North Korea was dealt a bad hand: Mountainous, with an extreme climate that veers from bitterly cold winters to blistering summers, it simply does not produce enough food to sustain its people, and outmoded agricultural practices have only worsened that shortfall.

What North Koreans do have in spades is pride, a characteristically Korean trait that has protected this small peninsula for 5,000 years. For North Koreans, pride is manna. They may be hungry every day, but pride is what keeps them going. Not everyone can feast off pride — tens of thousands of North Koreans have defected over the decades — but enough of the population is buoyed by this singular sense of national pride and a Korean sense of conformity to keep the regime afloat.
story  korea  weapon  war  enemy  people  children  society  psyche 
february 2016 by aries1988
The crème de la cram
Korean kids with pushy parents use crammers to get into crammers
korea  education  school  competition 
november 2015 by aries1988
Postcard from . . . South Korea

Ah yes, the end of the day. Sadly that’s one Alpine discipline the South Koreans haven’t yet mastered — après-ski remains a non-event. For a country that (according to a 2014 study by Euromonitor) drinks the most hard liquor per capita, they don’t like to party post-piste. This lends a strangely limp end to proceedings after the last lift: a handful of westerners are left hanging around, before grudgingly heading for some bibimbap and kimchi (albeit with very clean boots).
korea  ski  2018  winter  olympics 
november 2015 by aries1988
The sea women of Jeju
From more than 14,000 in the 1970s, the number of haenyeo has dwindled to fewer than 4,500 today.

The vast majority are aged over 50, with the oldest in their nineties. But, despite their age, they continue to perform feats beyond most women in their twenties — diving to depths of up to 20m, holding their breath for as long as two minutes at a time.

“If I weren’t diving, I’d just be growing potatoes,” she says. “I dived right through pregnancy, up to the ninth month.” This was normal practice, according to historians of Jeju, who record cases of haenyeo giving birth on boats during a day’s diving, and even strapping their young children to the mast while they worked.

Their financial independence is remarkable in a country where elderly poverty is a huge problem. Forty-nine per cent of South Koreans over 65 live on less than half the median income — the highest proportion in the international Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), a group of advanced economies. That has contributed to a nearly fivefold increase in the elderly suicide rate since 1990 to a level that is by far the highest of any developed country.
korea  asia  comparison  oecd  work  ocean  food  money  youth  aging  tradition  village  female  elders 
september 2015 by aries1988
Abe’s Avoidance of the Past
For its part, modern South Korea was built to a significant degree by wartime collaborators of the Japanese, most famously including Park Chung-hee, the father of the current president, Mrs. Park. Indeed, the elder Park adopted a Japanese name and served as an officer in the Japanese Imperial Army, and was a close ally of Abe’s grandfather, Kishi. But the treatment of this history remains anything but forthright in South Korea.
japan  china  korea  history 
august 2015 by aries1988
At Marathon in North Korea, Curiosity Goes a Long Way

In the hazy chill, I stood on the track with about 650 runners from about 30 countries who had come to challenge their preconceptions as well as their endurance.
korea  sports  marathon 
april 2015 by aries1988
Why a Generation of Adoptees Is Returning to South Korea
Lovell was one of the very few female adoptees I heard about with a Korean boyfriend. He’s a musician who tells her he is “not a typical Korean guy.” Still, “he scolds me, saying, ‘You should be doing this,' ” she said, imitating a paternal voice. Laura Klunder also pointed out the various ways gender roles are ingrained in daily life: Female adoptees are often viewed as masculine when they wear clunky shoes and carry their own bags of groceries — a sharp contrast to the young Korean women in high heels, short skirts and meticulously applied layers of makeup. Koreans also consider it unladylike for women to smoke in public. And if a handyman arrives at a woman’s apartment to fix something, he will often ask to speak to the husband. “In the U.S., I feel my race,” Lovell said. “Here I feel my gender. This is what it must have been like in the United States during the ‘Mad Men’ era.”

That night, Klunder and her friends passed plates of bibimbap (rice topped with meat and vegetables), soondubu jjigae (tofu stew) and pa jun (scallion pancake) around the table and ordered bottles of beer and soju.
korea  society  children  parents 
april 2015 by aries1988
Once Upon a Time in Pyongyang - By Marya Hannun | Foreign Policy
But this wasn't always the case. For a brief period in the early 20th century, after the 1910 fall of the original "Hermit Kingdom" -- the Choson dynasty -- -- and before the division of the Korean Peninsula in 1945, Pyongyang, then a provincial capital, was open and growing. The city served as a focal point for Western Protestant missionaries in Asia, prompting some to call it the "Jerusalem of the East." Although under unwelcome and often harsh Japanese occupation at the time, colonial rule also brought rapid changes, including industrialization and upgrades to transportation networks.
korea  history  photo 
april 2013 by aries1988
南方周末 - 在朝鲜留学的日子

story  korea  youth 
october 2012 by aries1988
韩国延长导弹射程 - 纽约时报中文网 国际纵览
googlereader  asia  korea  military 
october 2012 by aries1988
韩国 doodle:感恩节 2012 | 谷奥——探寻谷歌的奥秘
中秋节在朝鲜语称“추석(秋夕)”“중추절(仲秋节)”“가배(嘉俳)”“중추(仲秋)”“가배일(嘉俳日)”“중추가절(仲秋佳节)”。是扫墓并用新收获的谷物和果实祭祀先祖的日子。回乡探亲,向亲朋戚友送礼亦是过中秋节的习俗。所以英文亦叫朝鲜中秋节做“韩国感恩节”(Korean Thanksgiving Day)。
googlereader  korea  culture  google  doodle 
september 2012 by aries1988
South Korea Series
Découverte du talent et des photographies de l’artiste Martin Stavars prises en Corée du Sud. Une série complète très impressionnante où le choix du noir et blanc embellit chacun des clichés de cet environnement urbain. Plus d’images dans la suite de l’article, avec cette galerie de 50 photographies.
history  photo  korea 
july 2012 by aries1988

Copy this bookmark:

to read