Korea: Circles and Squares

Insights into Korea's Sudden Rise

“Stop commercializing women” (JoongAng Daily September 1, 2014)

“Stop commercializing women”

Joongang Daily

September 1, 2014



The presentation of females in the Korean media has taken a turn for the worse over the last five years that deeply worries many women. Advertising in magazines, on billboards, on posters in the subway and on television increasingly feature women in suggestive poses that would have been considered soft pornography 20 years ago. It seems that there is no limit to the use of the physical appearance of women, and occasionally of men, to cloud the thinking of consumers, appeal to the most basic aspects of their psychology and reduce the natural attractiveness of people into a raw and instinctive drive for instant gratification and thoughtless consumption.

The result of this drive to reduce women to products has a terrible impact on women, especially young girls. They are overwhelmed by hidden messages from the media to which they are exposed that suggest that physical attraction is the most critical issue. Young girls assume these messages to be authoritative, thinking that a commercialized sexuality is a necessary condition for self-expression and social acceptance. Increasingly, interviewing for jobs is more about physical appearance than actual ability and the impact of education about this shift is extremely negative. Read more of this post

“斷想:網路時代的大學教育” (中华读书报 2001年 2月 21日 )




貝一明/文 蔣洪生/譯

編者按:執教於美國伊利諾伊大學(University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)東亞係的貝一明(Emanuel Pastreich)博士對網路時代的大學教育有一整套極富前瞻性和可行性的設想。他認為:未來的國際一流大學必定是在網路教育方面高度發達的大學;對中國大學而言,網路教育機會大於挑戰,中國大學通過網路教育可躋身於國際一流大學,中國教育界不應喪失這一千載難逢的良機;網路教育會給中國的學者及學生創造與與世界一流大學密切交流的機會。下面刊發的是貝一明博士對網路時代的電腦與教育關係的一些基本看法。

貝一明先生畢業於耶魯大學中文系、哈佛大學東亞係(博士),曾留學中國,對中國有著深厚的感情。他最大的願望之一就是希望中國能更快、更深地融入國際化的潮流,並在這一潮流中不失自己的民族自信心,與世界其他國家平等合作。”我不怕中國強。我只希望富強起來的中國對於全世界、全人類擔負起和平和發展的重大責任,並為此作出偉大的貢獻。”這是貝一明先生常說的一句話。 Read more of this post

“中国通俗小说之影响于日朝” (中华读书报, 2001年7月18日)


 2001年 7月 18日



贝一明 (Emanuel Pastreich)




为什么本国语成为今天朝鲜和日本用来写学术文章所采用的惟一语言形式,而在二十世纪之前,本国语写作基本上是附属于文言文或者作为文言文的分支呢? 回答这个难以回答的问题时,我们发现当今世界仍然处在一个叫做“单一民族的独立国家”的分裂野兽的阴影之下,它要求语言、习俗和种族与国家的地理边界一致。这样就不可避免地导致了一种看法,认为用本国语写作是最自然的,而用一种古典语言写作是被强迫的,做作的。

我们忘记了为什么过去那么多人选择用拉丁文、希腊语、波斯语、阿拉伯语和汉语的书面语来表达自我,尽管这些语言的发源地不论从地理位置上还是从时代上都很遥远。 Read more of this post

Cryptic glyph near my home

I have become fascinated by this cryptic glyph that is spray-painted on a wall near my home.


Not sure exactly what it means, but it seems to have some profound meaning.



Looking again at the President Wilson’s 14 Points

Focusing on President Wilson’s 14 Points

Emanuel Pastreich

August 30, 2014

The Asia Institute


In light of the obscure negotiations concerning trade agreements and the lack of transparency in the diplomatic and security interactions of the United States with other nations, I would like to draw attention to the “Fourteen Points” issued by President Woodrow Wilson on January 8, 1918. At the time, the United States had entered the First World War, dragged into a blood bath between colonial powers which had little, or no, moral import. Although there are many who have criticized Woodrow Wilson for starting the United States on the path to foreign intervention and engaging in an ambiguous war, it is also true that by setting the United States up as the only country that had any explicit goals in the conflict, and making those goals something beyond narrow national interest (read “interests of the ruling class”) Wilson gave the United States a moral authority in international affairs that would last for a century and would be the reason that many were willing to forgive America’s mistakes in the interest of a greater global order.

That authority has been squandered away by the United States, and I mean the educated and privileged Americans who should have known better than to let this shift happen. And now we are seeing the dark consequences: a tendency around the world to assume that the United States has only pursued the most selfish goals both domestically and internationally from its very inception. That collapse of legitimacy can be seen in the profound doubts about the United States in Middle East as it can be seen in the response to the militarization of the military in Ferguson, Missouri.

I do not want to claim that President Wilson was a hero. He was quite simply a politician.  I believe that the ideals he held up remain critical to us. The United States can benefit a bit from going back to his writings.

Read more of this post

“여성의 상품화는 이제 그만” (중앙일보 2014년 8월 30일)


“여성의 상품화는 이제 그만”

2014년 8월 30일

임마누엘 페스트라이쉬



한국의 각종 매체에 등장하는 여성의 모습은 지난 5년간 줄곧 왜곡돼 많은 이들의 우려를 자아낸다. 잡지·입간판·포스터·지하철, 그리고 텔레비전 광고에는 한결같이 고혹적인 포즈를 취한 여성들로 넘쳐난다. 불과 20년 전만 해도 가위 ‘소프트 포르노’로 여겨졌을 법한 모습들이다. 간혹 남성 모델을 내세울 때도 있지만 특히 여성의 신체적 특성을 활용하려는 광고업계의 시도는 그 끝이 보이지 않을 정도다. 그들은 인간의 은밀한 욕구에 호소해 소비자의 판단을 흐리게 하고, 인간의 타고난 매력을 저속하게 변질시켜 즉각적인 만족과 즉흥적인 소비를 이끌어내는 데 여념이 없다. 바야흐로 여성의 상품화 시대다.
여성을 상품화하려는 전략은 여성, 특히 젊은 여성들에게 심각한 영향을 미친다. 나이가 어릴수록 각종 매체가 던지는 은밀한 메시지에 현혹돼 ‘육체적 매력이 내 삶에서 가장 중요한 문제’라고 여기기 때문이다. 특히 젊은 여성들은 이런 숨은 메시지를 무비판적으로 받아들여 ‘상업화된 성(性)’이야말로 자신을 표현하거나 사회적 인정을 받는 데 필수적인 요소로 간주한다. 요즘 취업을 위한 면접에서 업무수행 능력보다 외모가 갈수록 중시되는 분위기도 이 같은 외모지상주의를 계속 부채질한다. 비싼 돈을 들여 면접용 사진을 따로 찍고, 입사하고자 하는 회사의 업종에 어울리는 면접용 머리 손질까지 유행이다.

Read more of this post

“フェイスブックと将来のグローバル・ガバナ ンス” (ザ・ハフィントン・ポスト)




2014   8  21 

エマニュエル パストリッチ



フェイスブックは個人の利用者を「潜在的な広告需要者」とみなし、個人所有の掲示物から収集した個人の情報を第三者に販売するなど、利益を追求する企業ではある。しかし、個人がサイバー上で多くの友だちをつくり、全世界的に人脈を広げることができるという点では、フェイスブックは完璧ではないがこれまでで最善の手段であるといえる。 Read more of this post

“外国人の目に映った「統一大チャンス」” ( 中央日報 2014年 3月 4日)



2014年 3月 4日







Read more of this post

“ある“アフリカ系韓国人”の悲哀”(中央日報 2014年 4月 1日)



2014年 4月 1日




Read more of this post

“大韓民国、使い捨て社会から脱却したら” (中央日報 2014年 6月 3日)




2014年 6月 3日



資源枯渇のこの時代に、韓国で途方もない物質の浪費を見るのは苦痛だ。特に残念な点は、多くの韓国人がそういう習慣が誤っていると認識さえできないということだ。スタッフもやはり顧客にこんなに多くの使い捨ての物が必要なのかを尋ねず、店舗内で飲む顧客にも、紙コップの代わりにマグカップを使うかを尋ねない。最初からマグカップを洗う空間をなくしてコストを節約する店も多い。  Read more of this post


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