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Tue, September 21, 2021 | 20:08
About the past - Robert Neff
Hunting tigers in Manchuria in 1912
In March 1912, Sontag Hotel was the place to be in Seoul. Some described it as a place of political intrigue - backrooms haunted with shady characters plotting anarchy and unrest. Others, like Roy Chapman Andrews, saw it as a place to begin a great adventure. It was filled with...
Hunting 'devilfish' in Korea in 1912
In February 1912, an American arrived at a small Japanese whaling station near Ulsan, Korea. He was 28 years old, a naturalist and an explorer, and possibly the inspiration for Indiana Jones; he was Roy Chapman Andrews.
Joseon women and their manifest destiny (II)
A frequent observation by Western visitors to Korea in the late 19th century was the constant sound of tapping coming from most houses in the middle of the night. This was the sound of women ironing their clothing. According to Isabella Bird Bishop, the only sound that broke th...
Imbricated Chaos - Emanuel Pastreich
In defense of Donald John Trump
The lawyers employed by Donald Trump have amassed an impressive pile of arguments to defend him against charges that he incited a mob of his supporters to stage an armed insurrection in the Capitol and to murder people in an effort to stop the selection of his democratically el...
The nightmare born when technology took the place of science
Even small children are starting to sense that we live in an age when literally none of the information provided is reliable or believable. Information on a global scale is subject increasingly to Gresham's Law: low-quality information spreads everywhere and the truth is hoarde...
'Silhak' tradition as a solution to the current geopolitical crisis
South Koreans are having tremendous trouble grasping how familiar political and academic institutions in the United States have ceased to function as they once did. Koreans are confused to see Harvard professors promote nonsensical arguments about COVID-19 or to see politicians...
Voices from the North - Casey Lartigue Jr.
Are 'North Korean defectors' traitors?
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's sister, Kim Yo-jong, has accused North Koreans in South Korea of being defectors, describing us as “traitors and trash.” I think many of you have seen Kim Yo-jong in the media. One of her roles is being the speaker who blames South Korea.
Working with North Korean refugees and their angels
My first year in Korea a friend of mine gave me a copy of a book called, “Nothing to Envy.” I was completely consumed by the stories of the six North Koreans who eventually escaped to freedom. Their real-life experiences hit me in a way similar to the first time I read stories ...
Colonizing the colonizers: My moments of freedom
When you are born free, it may be difficult to see how precious freedom is. How easy it is to take things for granted without ever thinking about the consequences of being without it.
Korea: deConstructed - David Tizzard
Mental health not missiles
This week we've seen North Korea launch missiles from a train and, not to be outdone, South Korea launch missiles from a submarine with the President looking on all authoritatively. Those vertical peninsula pushes have since been surpassed by an announcement from Biden, Boris a...
The death of Korean politics
“He said this about this. Then she said that about that. Oh my god, have you heard their latest comments? Outrageous! Are they going to apologize? There's a petition on the Blue House website!” Quickly, choose one of the three old lads in their colored ties. That's the only sol...
The Korean proletariat
Thursday morning was spent discussing the plight of delivery drivers in Korea as part of a live radio show. “Not all heroes wear capes,” I exclaimed in an effort to draw even a small amount of attention away from the glitz and glamour of Marvel action figures and photoshopped g...
Parchment Made of Sheepskins - Scott Shepherd
What does tolerance even mean?
We live, it seems, in divided times. I suppose we always have, but in the past few years the social ruptures have become noticeably deeper and more severe. So partisan and so divided are we today that people living on the same street or in the same town experience vastly differ...
Biden must take responsibility for catastrophe in Afghanistan
“You don't think this actually could have been handled better in any way? No mistakes?” asks the interviewer.
Despite all the problems, Tokyo Olympics bring hopes and inspirations
In the run-up to the Olympics this year, I was feeling pretty gloomy about the whole prospect, to the extent that I nearly wrote an article arguing that it should just be canceled. With the virus showing no real sign of disappearing even in countries with high vaccination rates...

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