Korea is one of the critical flashpoints in the world today. News of North Korea′s recent nuclear tests, conducted in defiance of international pressure, drew widespread condemnation and raised serious concerns about the threat now posed to regional and international security by the regime of North Korea′s dear leader Kim Jong–Il. This book penetrates the veil surrounding the conflict on the Korean peninsula and North Korea′s missile and nuclear programmes. It provides a thorough historical analysis of relations between the two Koreas since the Korean War, which traces both North Korea′s path to economic ruin and South Korea′s transition from struggling dictatorship to vibrant democracy. As well as examining the political and economic development of North and South Korea at the domestic level, the book goes on to explore regional relations with Russia, China and Japan and, most importantly, America′s dealings with Korea and its negotiations with North Korea, in particular. It concludes with an analysis of North Korea′s current nuclear programme and its likely impact on international security in the 21st century.
This book provides an evenhanded coverage of Korea''s turbulent history during the last one hundred years, from seclusion to division. It focuses particularly on the development of the two different and antagonistic states on the peninsula since 1945. The author sees both countries through the windows of their possibilities and interests. He supplements his narrative, which makes use of rich source material, with observations he has made in South Korea, where he spent more than ten years from the 1970s to the 1990s, and where he had access to politicians and opinion leaders. The book starts by describing how the Hermit Kingdom was exposed to the greed of foreign powers at the end of the 19th...
This is an historical survey of all the religious traditions of Korea in relation to the socio-cultural trends of seven different periods of Korean history. The book includes a discussion of the history of the study of religion in Korea, a chronological description of Korean folk religion including shamanism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Roman Catholicism and Protestantism, Islam, and Korean New Religions, and some final observations about the unique characteristics of religious beliefs and practices in Korea.
Written by one of the leading experts on Korea, A Brief History of Korea covers the history of Korea from the origins of the Korean people in prehistoric times to the economic and political situation in North and South Korea today. Providing a detailed overview of the cultural and historical influences that have shaped Korean society, the author discusses the major periods of Korean history Three Kingdoms, Koryo Dynasty, and Chosun Dynasty; the foreign invasions Korea has endured; the post-World War II situation that led to the country's division and the Korean War; and developments in North and South Korea from the end of the Korean War up through the present.