War on the Cold War – Transitional Justice in Korea

Lunch talk with Sungju Park-Kang, University of Turku, Finland, on the issue of transitional justice for victims of state violence in Korea.

Abstract: The presentation investigates the issue of justice for victims of state violence in Korea. This endeavour includes a case study on the establishment of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) in South Korea in 2005. With democratic transitions largely achieved by civil movements, there was enough space for those seeking the justice and truth that had been suppressed by the past, authoritarian regimes. Many of the TRC’s areas of interest addressed the questions of the Korean War and national division. The TRC was dissolved under a conservative president in 2010. Following the 2017 ‘Candlelight Revolution’ and the election of Moon Jae-in, a new liberal president, a revival of the Commission is now on its way. The talk starts with the Danish singer Kim Larsen’s Jutlandia and briefly explores how this is connected to the Korean War.

Bio: Sungju Park-Kang is Adjunct Professor at the Centre for East Asian Studies, University of Turku, Finland. Park-Kang was Assistant Professor of International Relations and Korean Studies at Leiden University, the Netherlands, and the University of Central Lancashire, UK. His work has appeared in Review of International Studies and Millennium: Journal of International Studies among others. Park-Kang is the author of Fictional International Relations: Gender, Pain and Truth (Routledge, 2014).

This is a lunch talk, please feel free to bring your lunch.