Odd Arne Westad joins ChinaTalk to discuss his latest book Empire and Righteous Nation: 600 Years of China-Korea Relations. Westad’s work is a diplomat’s handbook that connects the sweeping currents of history to the geopolitics of today. Co-hosting today is Danny Crichton of TechCrunch. We explore how Korea, past and present, navigates its relationship with the powerful empires on its doorstep.
Korea’s unique Confucianism serves as a launching point into a discussion on empire and nation-state that takes us from the Joseon Dynasty’s navigation of the Ming Dynasty’s collapse all the way up to the present day (with snippets on espionage in Qing China, Korea’s own version of the Taiping Rebellion and Japanese imperialism).
We end on K-drama’s popularity in Zhongnanhai and how the flow of South Korean pop culture into China might complicate Chinese leaders’ decision to intervene on behalf of the DPRK in a conflict on the peninsula.
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Outtro music (which really is fire this time, stick around for three Korean bangers):
Ash Island, Melody https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m8L2OLu6JZo
Sooljalee (술자리) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OJAKYX8A_WM
NO:EL _ 00 (DOUBLE O) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sALhYkA-ij4