Beginning this year, the annual conference of the AAS will feature its first CKS-sponsored panels. Born out of discussions from last year’s CKS membership meeting, the panels seek to highlight current trends in Korean Studies and to make intellectual trends in this field more accessible to scholars in other fields. Envisioned as an interdisciplinary and collaborative forum, this year’s AAS will hold back-to-back to panels to allow for meaningful discussions during a five-hour period.
The CKS-sponsored panels this year will be held in the first two panel session times, and deal with issues surrounding the urban space(s) of Seoul. “Seoul I: Transforming the City: Governmentality, Urban Planning and Social Movements” (panel #21, Thursday, 4–6 pm, organized by Joy Kim of Princeton University) follows the various permutations of the city (Hanyang, Hansǒng, Keijō, and Seoul) in the 20th and 21st century in both real governed and imagined states as the city developed through strategic urban planning. This panel focuses on how the Japanese colonial government, Park Chunghee’s anti-Communist agenda, and contemporary desires to efface the urban poor and commemorate Seoul’s history contended with competing interests (including pedestrians and consumers), and the often times unintended or unpredictable consequences of those strategies. Panelists include Baek Yung Kim of Kwangwoon University, Changmo Ahn of Kyunggi University, Lisa Kim Davis of UCLA, and Joy Kim. Christine Kim of Georgetown University will serve as discussant. Seoul I Panel Information [PDF]
“Seoul II–City Montage in Art, Architecture, and Moving Images” (panel #48, Thursday, 7:30–9:30 pm, organized by Ellie Choi of Cornell University) approaches Seoul as a visual text. Using aesthetic and textual practices, writers, artists, and ordinary residents, it shows how these actors produced alternate visions of the city that challenged the homogenizing articulations of modernity planned under Japanese colonialism and during the Park Chung-hee era. Panelists Se-Mi Oh of the University of Wisconsin, Madison, Chunghoon Shin of Binghamton University, and Ellie Choi will trace the multiple expressions of urban subjectivity by reading commercial signage of colonial Seoul, alterity in a colonial city that doubled Tokyo’s metropolitan modernity, and experimental art of the late 1960s. Seo Yongchae of Hanshin University and the editor-in-chief of Munhak tongnae will serve as discussant. Seoul II Panel Information [PDF]
submitted by Todd Henry and Sonja Kim