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Overview This book sets out a panoramic view of law and society studies in South Korea, considering the factors that have made this post-colonial war-torn country economically and politically successful. The contributors examine societal and historical conditions that are reflected in — or that were shaped by — the law, through a variety of lenses; including law and development, law and politics, colonialism and gender, past wrongdoings, public interest lawyering, and judicial reform.

In dismantling the historical specificity of the way in which Korea studies are universally framed, the contributions provide novel views, theories and information about South Korean law and society. Incorporating various perspectives and methodologies, and demonstrating a finely crafted application of general theory to specific issues, this book will prove insightful to law scholars and researchers looking to widen their perspective and broaden their knowledge on law and society in Korea.

Law practitioners whose practice requires knowledge of the Korean legal system will also find plenty of information in this authoritative book.

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Scientists in the United States alone conducted at least several hundred tests with human subjects who were not informed of the nature of the experiments, or of the danger to their health. But these known war criminals were employed by this institution, were given great powers within the organization and continued to use humans without their consent during the course of more than forty years. Experiments were authorized on prisoners, babies and patients in psychiatric hospitals in , and from until by vice director of the NIH, Masami Kitaoka.

Similar experiments continued thereafter. Reflecting on this reality, in August in a court ruling on the case of the vivisection and biological warfare victims of Unit v.

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The thirty-five plaintiffs in this case included former soldiers, civilian employees of the military, forced laborers, and the three surviving comfort women. Since this case was filed, around sixty more lawsuits have been brought in Japanese courts and around forty in U. The defendants were the Japanese government, private corporations, and sometimes both. The victims groups developed inter-group exchanges and bonding in terms of spirit, tactics, and political, legal, and international networking. The proactive publicity tactics of the Council for Countermeasures of the Labor Volunteer Corps Chongdaehyop successfully politicized the issue under President Roh Tae-woo and it was further internationalized under the UN-led global feminism movement.

This tactic challenged the conventional concept of interstate compensation for historical injustices and stressed individual rights to compensation from government and private corporations for past injustices. The internationalization of the comfort women issue was a good example of the proactive role of the UN. Rulings in the lawsuits filed in started being announced in Most of the cases were dismissed, with the courts citing either the validity of the compensation waiver agreement in the Basic Treaty or the expiration of statute of limitations.

First, it provided a grand educational opportunity for Japan and Korea. Second, victimhood was redefined in the process and a more comprehensive approach to psychological and cultural healing, through restoring universal human rights of the victims, was adopted. Fourth, an empowering transnational civic activism developed.

The court battles provided for rallying points for victims, civil society activists, research groups, human rights lawyers, and journalists in both societies. Good signs also appear at the government level.

For instance, in , as in , the two governments made meaningful progress in resolving past history issues caused by Japanese colonial rule. As a part of the three-year plan to accept all ethnic Koreans in Sakhalin, who were forcefully relocated by Japan, the Korean government brought home ethnic Koreans from October to December of with Japanese financial support.

In addition, remains of Koreans returned home in January and November of , who were forced to move, died, and were buried in Japan. Search for. Articles Authors Reviewers About the Journal. Title Author Keyword Volume Vol. However, this argument does not rely on the idea that historical animosity is largely influenced by irrational emotionalism. This article focuses on the intricately inseparable nature of Realism, morality and emotions.

A recent view that historical animosity as a constant cannot explain the variations in Korea-Japan relations is not well-founded in the sense that it assumes historical animosity is purely irrational and emotional phenomenon. Rather, the historical animosity itself demonstrates the usefulness of Realism and its limitations in explaining state behaviors, as well as the importance of matters of justice many Realist scholars have usually ignored. In this context, subtle but positive changes in Japan regarding historical injustices since the s should be noted.

Keywords : Korea-Japan relations, historical animosity, morality, justice, historical injustices, Realism. However, this article starts with the idea that we need inter-paradigmatic inquiry as well as an interdisciplinary approach in studying state behaviors due to the complexity of human nature complicated by rationality, morality, emotions, and even religion, all at the same time. However, focusing on just one aspect of human nature, or just one paradigm among several, may stand in the way of explaining and understanding state behaviors including Korea-Japan relations.

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The usual identification of emotion with irrationalism is somewhat misleading since scholars who study emotion do not regard it as always irrational but rather consider emotion as rational sometimes. Emotion and perception are not necessarily separate phenomena; they could also reinforce each other. Here I will discuss, first, the role of morality and Realism in international relations in general; second, Realist nature of historical animosity in Korea- Japan relations; third, history perception gap, historical injustices, and historical animosity in Korea-Japan relations.

Then, I conclude persisting historical animosity in Korea-Japan relations is not just the effect of emotionalism and irrationality. At a general level, I also conclude the persistence of historical animosity itself demonstrates the usefulness of Realism and its limitations in explaining state behaviors, as well as the necessity of rectifying historical injustices for stable peace in their relations.


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An unjust order quickly invites the resentment and rebellion which lead to its undoing. It is necessary, therefore, to unite justice and force to make that which is just strong and that which is strong just. According to Hedley Bull, there are certain ideas or beliefs as to what justice involves in world politics, and demands formulated in the name of these ideas play a role in the course of events. Ideas of justice belong to the class of moral ideas, ideas which treat human actions as right in themselves and not merely as a means to an end. Although to imagine that it could solve our most pressing international conflict is unrealistic, morality has several functions: first, it serves to keep before us the criteria and standards we as human beings must strive for; second, it can help statesmen avoid pseudo- Realism the preoccupation with power and interest narrowly conceived that so often is not only evil but self-defeating; third, when consequences are hard to judge, statesmen might take more guidance from principles of ethics.

This may be related to what Mervyn Frost points out: the Cold War blocked the emergence of ethical theories within the discipline. As Christian Reus-Smit and Duncan Snidal argue, scholars have never fully abandoned their practical ambitions: Realists prescribe what rational states ought to do; postmodernists recommend practices of scholarly resistance and deconstruction; whenever they make such prescriptions, they engage in the normative as well as the empirical. Political science is the science not only of what is, but of what ought to be. In this vein, here I will employ a theoretical perspective that ignores neither empirical positivistic nor normative aspect of the inquiry on Korea-Japan relations.

I will repudiate such a notion as frictions arising from historical animosity are anomalous, irrational, emotionalist, and inconsistent with Realist logic. This cliche is often used to underline the abnormal nature of Korea-Japan relations. However, it is the prevalent phenomenon that geographical contiguity intensifies the security dilemma among neighboring states. Considering the water between the two alleviates the security dilemma, there is no wonder the proximity of the two distrusting states should make each feel insecure, making an amicable relationship hard to develop. All this suggests that the continuity of the historical animosity and bilateral frictions can be due to other factors than just irrational emotionalism.

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However, persistent historical animosity is not necessarily contradictory to the Realist logic. Then, contrary to the common belief on the nature of historical animosity, too much Realism is a problem rather than too little Realism or too much emotionalism. In , when the U. They have provided a detailed diplomatic history of Korea- Japan relations full of conflictive incidents, and produced a bulk of literature on Korean nationalism or the history of Korean independent movement against the Japanese imperialism.

The psycho-historical approach regards bridging the perception gap as the most important factor for amicable relations. This approach is usually pessimistic about the prospect of the relationship as long as the perception gap between the two peoples remains unchanged. This version of realism pays exclusive attention to the indirect or unintended consequences of the U. An oversimplified analysis runs the risk of not only distorting the reality but also providing irrelevant policy prescriptions. However, Korea and Japan themselves do have their own roles to play.

The long history of Korea-Japan relations tells us a simple fact that the two states themselves are the more important actors in Korea-Japan relations. No matter how important the roles the U. President Rhee was aware of the benefits that the good relations with Japan would bring about under the increasing communist threats. He set a clear goal of diplomatic normalization. In this context, different views between Korea and Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers SCAP authorities in Japan on Korea-related issues such as the legal status of the Korean residents in Japan or their properties 43 reinforced the impression that the U.

Therefore, the U. What would have happened if Japan had apologized at that time as Emperor Akihito did in October ? The deep sorrow that I feel over this never leaves my memory. A series of negotiations took place after the first preliminary talks for normalization failed in October After the first two conferences failed, the third conference resumed from October 6 26, after the Korean War. This led to an exchange of mutual recrimination between Kim and the chief of the Japanese delegate, Kubota Kanichiro.

Korea under Japanese rule

If Japan had not advanced to Korea at that time, Korea would have naturally have been occupied by some other country, and would have experienced a more miserable situation than under Japanese rule The state of the Korean people as that of enslavement the Cairo Declaration described is only an expression of excitement embraced by the Allied Powers at the time of hostility All the actions taken by the Allied Powers after the termination of the War were in violation of international law.

The Japanese tortured Your Excellency and oppressed your people I apologize to your Excellency, and Forgive like the Lord who forgave His enemies on the Cross and bring Even if I am reportedly not a friend of Japan, I am willing to forget the past completely and am ready for restarting for new relations with Japan if the Japanese show the same cooperative spirit I asked Japan to extend generosity to the ROK, a weaker neighbor, in the same spirit as shown by the U.

Your apology for the forty years of Japanese rule over Korea drew my serious attention because it was the first statement of such nature I have ever heard from prominent Japanese people. In the absence of such expressions as yours, we have believed that the Japanese intent is not to be friendly toward the ROK, but to redominate Korea.

Korea-Japan relations are different from German-French relations. You [German and French people] fought each other fairly with might and main. Thus it is also easy to apologize and correct the past wrongdoings. However, we were stabbed in the back [by the Japanese] even without having a chance to fight a war with Japan.

The entire educational apparatus of the military establishment was directed towards cultivating The armed forces were thoroughly imbued with this notion of superiority Just as Japan was subject to pressure from the Great Powers, so she would apply pressure to still weaker countries a clear case of the transfer psychology Historical animosity is what Korea and Japan themselves have made of it throughout their bilateral interactions. Its persistently negative effects on the bilateral relations substantiate that unjust order imposed by the strong in the Cold War context, has been fragile since the historical injustices were not rectified by the willful actions by both at the level of the elites and the citizen body.

Until now, the studies on Korea-Japan relations have focused on either psycho-historical, or Realpolitik nature of the relationship. I argue both normative and Realpolitik nature of the historical animosity should be addressed at the same weight.


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Fortunately, in the post-Cold War era some positive changes are occurring in the baseline of Korea-Japan relations. These delicate changes in the long run coexist with the repeated ups-and-downs due to Realpolitik calculations of the two states. For instance, the recent changes in Japanese court rulings and the out-of-court settlements suggest that Japan is slowly moving toward accepting responsibility for compensation after and admitting that it violated the human rights of the victims of forced labor.

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