Notes from the Chair of the Committee on Korean Studies (February 2010)

Posted by: Beadle on Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010

As the chair of the CKS-AAS (April 2008 – March 2010), I would like to report CKS activities and accomplishments during the past one year. Since the CKS (executive board members) redefined in 2008 its identity as a professional organization that would connect various forms of resources to our members to promote your scholarly and teaching interests, we pursued the following new projects in collaboration with the Korea Foundation. First, in December 2009, we conducted an on-line survey to identify contents of multimedia teaching resources on Korea. With the support of the Northeast Asia Council (NEAC), we sent out this survey to members who were listed as Koreanists or/and Japanologists and received very positive feedback from them. We thank you for your participation. During the 2010 AAS meeting, the CKS board members will review contents of the audio-visual materials, which the Korea Foundation will produce on the basis of this feedback, in order to ensure their utility as effective teaching tools (rather than nationalist materials) for CKS members and beyond. Second, we will launch a series of professional development workshops to support advanced graduate students and junior faculty in the U.S. and South Korea. As a pilot project for this type of workshop, we will bring together mentors who are CKS members and advanced graduate students and junior faculty in South Korean universities. This first workshop intends to enhance these mentees’ skill to present their scholarly work in the U.S. and thereby expand the body of new scholarly materials on Korea for CKS members and beyond. This type of workshop can also facilitate scholarly exchange between those in South Korea and those in the U.S. During the 2010 AAS meeting, the board members will discuss logistics for organizing the workshop in Seoul, Korea. Third, we will compile a list of “recommended” books on Korea that are already published in English to support CKS members’ teaching about Korea in colleges and make these resources also available for K-12 teachers and general readers. We strongly encourage our CKS members to send your lists to the chair ( before the 2010 AAS meeting. It would be of great help if you can add brief annotations on the books you recommend. The board members will also generate concise annotations on these books.

I would like to emphasize that the board members of the CKS have a strong commitment to build and maintain the identity of the CKS as an autonomous organization that promotes our members scholarly and teaching interests and therefore look for various funding sources beyond the Korea Foundation. So please let us know if you have good suggestions for potential funding sources in the U.S., South Korea, and beyond. Please also share your constructive suggestions for project ideas. Our names (terms of service) and e-mail addresses are: Seungsook Moon (2007-2010;, Janet Poole (2007-2010;, Donald N. Clark (2008-2011; and Michael Pettid (2008-2011; The three new members elected in the summer of 2009 are Christopher Hanscom (2009-2012;, Joy Kim (2009-2012;, and Hwasook Nam (2009-2012;

Next, let me report on some routine activities of the CKS board administered by myself as the chair in collaboration with the NEAC. First, we sponsored a panel entitled “the Japanese Seizure of Korea: A Centennial Retrospective” that focuses on Hilary Conroy’s work. This was organized by Wayne Patterson and to be held during the upcoming AAS meeting in Philadelphia. Second, I continued to work closely with the NEAC in reviewing applications for the following four categories of Korean Studies grants: (1) Research Travel Grants to Korea and North America, (2) Grants for organizing workshops and conferences, (3) Grants for enhancing Korean Studies teaching, and (4) Travel Grants to support graduate students’ participation in the annual AAS meeting. I urge you, CKS members, to submit strong proposals especially for the Research Travel Grants. Please plan ahead and submit your proposals before the deadlines in the fall and in the spring. Please also pay attention to the required information on the application form to avoid disqualification due to inadequate contents.

The CKS also has collaborated with the Academy of Korean Studies (AKS) to sponsor the Fifth World Congress of Korean Studies to be held in Seoul, Korea, in 2010.

Let me also report the result of the fall 2009 election of the NEAC officers. A Koreanist was elected (Kyung Hyun Kim at UC-Irvine, film). He will join two other continuing Koreanists in the NEAC (Namhee Lee, UCLA and Clark Sorensen, University of Washington, Seattle). This is a decrease from 4 Koreanists in the NEAC last year and the parity between Koreanists and Japanologists in the 9-member NEAC (including myself as an ex-officio) depends partly on your active participation in the AAS elections in the future.

Finally, let me draw your attention to the General Meeting of the CKS in Philadelphia during 2010 AAS conference. This meeting will be held from 9:00 pm to 11:00 pm in Room 404 in Marriott Downtown Hotel on Saturday, March 27th. I hope to meet you and hear from you during this meeting. Please mark your calendar if you will attend the meeting. The CKS identity as autonomous professional organization to promote its members interests really depends on your active participation and interest in CKS activities pursued by the board members you elected.

Thank you and best wishes,

Seungsook Moon


Department of Sociology (on sabbatical leave, 2009-10)

Vassar College, Box # 507

124 Raymond Ave. Poughkeepsie, NY 12604

Tel: 845-437-7662 Fax:845-437-7677

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