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  • P-ISSN0023-3900
  • E-ISSN2733-9343

Korean Studies between the Social Sciences and Historical Studies: Debates over Modern and Contemporary Korean History

Korea Journal, (P)0023-3900; (E)2733-9343
2011, v.51 no.3, pp.104-139
https://doi.org/10.25024/kj.2011.51.3.104

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Abstract

This study focuses on the interdisciplinary moves made by the social sciences and historical studies regarding modern and contemporary Korean history. These moves began in earnest from the 1980s to analyze the dynamic development process of Korean studies. The periods analyzed as part of this study were marked by two dramatic transitions in academic trends. The first was that of the 1980s to the mid-1990s, a period in which a huge epistemological transition took place in the nationalism and internal development-based paradigm of historical studies, as well as in the developmentalism and modernization paradigm of social sciences. The second transition took place in the late 1990s, in which cultural approaches to history challenged traditional methods, and new paradigms based on postmodernity, postnationalism, and postcolonialism emerged. This study analyzes the academic activities and journals of two organizations that have continuously played a major role in informing the direction of modern and contemporary Korean history since the 1980s, namely the Korean Social History Association and the Institute for Korean Historical Studies.

keywords
Korean studies Korean Social History Association Institute for Korean Historical Studies sociology of knowledge

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