Lecture: The Korean Middle Class, 1960-2010

April 6, 4:00pm - 5:30pm
Mānoa Campus, Center for Korean Studies Add to Calendar

Myungji Yang, Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, will deliver a presentation titled “From Miracle to Mirage: The Making and Unmaking of the Korean Middle Class, 1960–2010.”

This talk will examine the puzzle of why the celebrated middle class that was both cause and consequence of Korea’s economic development seems to have declined.

Drawing on primary archival sources and in-depth interviews from a year of field research, Professor Yang will focus on the unpredictable process inherent in the scramble for middle-class status in Korea. Her study shows that many first-generation members of the middle class achieved upward mobility by engaging in speculation and taking advantage of skyrocketing real estate prices.

Previous studies have mostly explained the rise of the Korean middle class as a consequence of a meritocratic order that provided white-collar workers, corporate managers, and engineers in large conglomerates with higher incomes, long-term job security, and consumerist lifestyles.

Event Sponsor
Center for Korean Studies, Mānoa Campus

More Information
Merclyn Labuguen, (808) 956-7041, merclyn@hawaii.edu, http://bit.ly/2mABklQ

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