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

Queen Munjeong’s (1501-1565) Statecraft and Buddhist View in Confucian Joseon

Korea Journal, (P)0023-3900; (E)2733-9343
2014, v.54 no.2, pp.62-86
https://doi.org/10.25024/kj.2014.54.2.62

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Abstract

Queen Munjeong (1501-1565) was a substantial power holder who administerednational affairs from “behind the bamboo curtain” during the Joseon dynasty (1392-1910). The purpose of this article is to examine the relationship between her view onBuddhism and statecraft in sixteenth-century Confucian Joseon. To that end, thisstudy examines Queen Munjeong's Buddhist activities in anti-Buddhist Confuciansociety, her understanding of Buddhism, and her statecraft in relation to her Buddhistpolicy. Queen Munjeong did not reject heterodoxy and respected tradition, whichserved as the logic for her favor of Buddhism. She was a substantial power holder whosurpassed royal authority in power and suppressed remonstrators, and her Buddhistactivities had strong elements of private character while seeking miraculous efficacy,which eventually resulted in criticism from her contemporary and immediate latergenerations.

keywords
Buddhism Confucianism Joseon Queen Munjeong statecraft suryeom cheongjeong 垂簾聽政 (“politics from behind the bamboo curtain”)

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