Assimilating Seoul: Japanese Rule and the Politics of Public Space in Colonial Korea, 1910-1945

Overview


"Moving beyond top-down accounts of colonialism, Assimilating Seoul offers a richly textured, on-the-ground understanding of how Japanese rule operated and was contested in Seoul. The book’s careful and vivid reconstruction of the entanglements of the state with city residents makes the powerful argument that the materiality of colonial power should be understood in the configuration and experiences of urban spaces. It is a splendid combination of urban and colonial histories." —Gyan Prakash, author of Mumbai ...
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Assimilating Seoul: Japanese Rule and the Politics of Public Space in Colonial Korea, 1910-1945

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Overview


"Moving beyond top-down accounts of colonialism, Assimilating Seoul offers a richly textured, on-the-ground understanding of how Japanese rule operated and was contested in Seoul. The book’s careful and vivid reconstruction of the entanglements of the state with city residents makes the powerful argument that the materiality of colonial power should be understood in the configuration and experiences of urban spaces. It is a splendid combination of urban and colonial histories." —Gyan Prakash, author of Mumbai Fables

"In this illuminating examination of spatial politics in Japanese-occupied Seoul, Todd Henry takes us into the labyrinth of colonial governmentality.  His captivating analysis of public ritual, city planning, and industrial expositions reveals the varied uses of urban form as a technology of rule--as well as the limitations of state power. A model study of the colonial city."—Louise Young, author of Beyond the Metropolis: Second Cities and Modern Life in Interwar Japan

"Few issues in the history of world colonialism are as conceptually challenging as the problem of assimilation within the Japanese empire. Henry offers a fascinating approach to the contentious politics of what it meant to be a Korean colonial subject under Japanese rule. The many answers to this problem are sure to stimulate debate."—Andre Schmid, Professor of East Asian Studies, University of Toronto

"This is one of the best books on modern Korean history I've read in recent years. Henry breaks new ground, especially in English, in his focus on the 'spaces' of colonial rule, and his command of such rich and varied primary sources is impressive. Assimilating Seoul is a fascinating read."—Carter J. Eckert, Yoon Se Young Professor of Korean History, Harvard University
 

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780520276550
  • Publisher: University of California Press
  • Publication date: 3/7/2014
  • Series: Asia Pacific Modern , #12
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 739,667
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author


Todd A. Henry is Assistant Professor of History at the University of California, San Diego.
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Table of Contents


List of Illustrations
Note on Place Names
Preface and Acknowledgments

Introduction. Assimilation and Space: Toward an Ethnography of Japanese Rule
1. Constructing Keijo: The Uneven Spaces of a Colonial Capital
2. Spiritual Assimilation: Namsan’s Shinto Shrines and Their Festival Celebrations
3. Material Assimilation: Colonial Expositions on the Kyongbok Palace Grounds
4. Civic Assimilation: Sanitary Life in Neighborhood Keijo
5. Imperial Subjectification: The Collapsing Spaces of a Wartime City

Epilogue. After Empire’s Demise: The Postcolonial Remaking of Seoul’s Public Spaces

Notes
Selected Bibliography
Index

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