Presenting the richness of Korean civilization from early state formation to the jarring transformations resulting in two distinctive trajectories of modern development, this book introduces the country's major historical events, patterns, and debates. Organised both chrologically and thematically, it explores recurring themes such as Korean identity, external influence, and family and gender. This lively narrative assumes prior kwledge, inviting readers to appreciate both the distinctiveness and universality of Korean history, while integrating it into East Asian history more broadly. Fully revised throughout, this second edition explores recent developments in Korean history and places greater emphasis on historiography, with each chapter including extensive discussion of how the events and themes under consideration have been viewed up to the present day.
Kyung Moon Hwang is Professor of History and East Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Southern California, USA. A graduate of Oberlin College and Harvard University, his research covers the modern transformation of Korea, with a focus on state and society in the early 20th century and history disputes in the late 20th century.