February 9, 2023 The 13th Critical Issues Forum on Korean Studies: The Trajectories and Roles of the 386 Generation in Contemporary Korea

13th Critical Issues Forum Flyer Final Final

The Center for Korean Studies presents:

"The 13th Critical Issues Forum on Korean Studies: The Trajectories and Roles of the 386 Generation in Contemporary Korea." on February 9, 2023.

When: February 9, 2023 ‧ 3:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Where: Center for Korean Studies Auditorium


Former student activists of prodemocracy movements in the 1980s, the so-called 386 Generation, entered mainstream politics in the 1990s, and since then, they have become a major political force in government agencies, political parties, and civic organizations. Public perception of the 386  Generation has since changed from the agents of sociopolitical reforms to a status-quo privileged group that takes advantage of the existing order and exacerbates social inequality.

The Critical Issue Forum aims to highlight the relationship between the 386 Generation, democracy, and social inequality in South Korean society. Two panelists—Professors Yoonkyung Lee and Jin-Wook Shin—will lead a deep conversation about whether or not the popular and media narratives about the 386 Generation are accurate, how we can make sense of the roles of this generation in the process of Korean democracy, and how we reconcile generation gaps.


-- Yoonkyung Lee: “Three Roads to Democratic Representation: The Democracy Generation's Contributions and Limitations”

Dr. Lee is a professor in the Department of Sociology at the University of Toronto. She specializes in labor protest, social movements, inequality, neoliberalism, and contentious politics with a regional focus on East Asia.

-- Jin-Wook Shin: “Inequality, Democracy, and the 'Problem of Generations' in South Korea”

Dr. Shin is a professor in the Department of Sociology at Chung Ang University. He has published books and articles in the research areas of democratic theory, party politics, social movements, social inequalities, and the welfare state.

[Moderator and Discussant]

-- Moderator: Young-A Park

Dr. Park is a professor and Graduate Chair of the Asian Studies Department at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. Her areas of research include film industry, social movements, and migration in South Korea.

-- Discussant: Myungji Yang

Dr. Yang is a professor in the Department of sociology at the University of Hawai'i, Mānoa. Her research interests include political sociology, sociology of development, social inequality, social movements, and East Asia.

In addition, a Workshop with Graduate Students will be held on February 10, 2023 ‧ 10:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m at the Center for Korean Studies Conference Room.

Center for Korean Studies events are free and open to all. For further information, including information regarding disability access, telephone the Center for Korean Studies at 808-956-7041. This event is supported by the Doo Wook and Helen Nahm Choy Fund. The University of Hawai‘i is an equal opportunity/affirmative action institution.

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