4 Jan 2021
Views 42

Visit Korea -


국립아시아문화전당 -

직지 글로벌 -

코리아나 -

코리아넷 -

Iman Ghasemi
30 Apr 2023
Views 7

Topic: Korea’s first of march movement and Persian constitutional revolution (a step to get rid of colonialism)

 Writers:   Iman Ghasemi Deligani, Aisa Eshaghi, Nilufar Hosseinizadeh

Brief introduction: this article tried to explain similar situation that Iran and Korea had in contemporary history; specifically how they get rid of colonialism.


The Brutal Legacy of Japan's Colonial Rule in Korea and how it started

March 1st Movement 

Korean Independence Day 

The spark of the awakening of Iranians

Constitutional movement

The official occupation of Iran by the Allies (Great Britain, Soviet Union)

The Brutal Legacy of Japan's Colonial Rule in Korea and how it started

In 1905, the Japanese government unilaterally declared that Korea would henceforth become a Japanese protectorate. The colonization was a result of Japan's imperialistic ambitions and its desire to expand its territory and resources. Japan's colonization of Korea was motivated by economic and strategic interests, as Korea was seen as a resource-rich territory that could be exploited to Japan's advantage. Later, in 1910, after years of war and intimidation, Japan formally annexed the country. This status lasted until 1945; it was altered in 1945 when Korea became a formal colony of Japan. This was the first time in Korea's long history that the entire country and its people were subjugated under alien rule. The announcement was made through a document called the Japan-Korea Annexation Treaty, which was signed by representatives of both countries. Still, many Koreans saw the treaty as illegitimate and protested against Japanese rule. The Japanese government retaliated with repression and violence, leading to a long period of oppression and exploitation of the Korean people.

Japan used military force to take control of Korea and ruled Korea through the offices of a governor-general, who were usually military men from the Japanese army or navy. Japan imposed its own culture, language, and laws on the Korean people. To establish control over its new protectorate, Japan waged an all-out war on Korean culture by forbidding Korean schools and universities from teaching their native language and emphasizing manual labour over intellectual pursuits. It also became a crime to teach history from non-approved texts, and authorities burned many Korean historical documents, essentially wiping out the historical memory of Korea.

Japan demolished several historical landmarks in Korea, including palaces, temples, and monuments. They also stole several cultural treasures and returned them to Japan. Japan set about to destroy Korean culture and replace it with Japanese customs. Public places adopted Japanese culture as well; an edict to make films in Japanese soon followed. However, Japan's colonization efforts were not limited to Korea; they also sought to plunder Korean cultural symbols. One of these symbols was the royal palace, Gyeongbokgung (The Eastern Great), built in Seoul in 1395 by the Joseon dynasty. Soon after assuming power, the Japanese colonial government tore down over a third of its historic buildings and turned them into tourist attractions for Japanese visitors. Historian Heejung Kang notes that the imperial government also attempted to preserve Korean art and culture, but then used it to uphold Japan's image of itself as a civilizing and modern force. This view of Korea as backward and primitive compared with Japan made it into textbooks, museums, and even Koreans' perceptions of themselves.

Japan seized control of many of Korea's natural resources and industries, including coal mining, fisheries, and agriculture. They used these resources for personal gain, leaving many Koreans penniless. They forced Koreans to work in mines and factories, nearly 725,000 Korean workers were made to work for Japan and its other colonies in Japan and elsewhere, while hundreds of thousands of Korean women were forced into sexual slavery as "comfort women" in military brothels.

Japan placed stringent restrictions and regulations on Korean people, severely restricting their freedom of expression, assembly, and association. They also crushed any type of political dissent or opposition.

During WWII, Japan forced numerous Koreans, often against their will, to fight in the Japanese army. Many were dispatched to battle in other parts of Asia, where they incurred heavy losses.

Japanese scientists conducted unethical medical experiments on Korean prisoners during the war, some of which involved infecting them with diseases and conducting surgical procedures without anaesthesia.

Historians who condone Japanese policy towards Korea claimed that considerable progress was made in Korea's economic and educational systems during the colonial period. Although it cannot be denied that there was some degree of economic progress between 1910 and 1945, the main beneficiaries were Japanese and a handful of Korean collaborators. The majority of Korean citizens were reduced to a state of impoverishment and illiteracy.

Japan's colonization of Korea ended in 1945 at the end of World War II. Japan was forced to surrender to the Allied Powers, and as part of the surrender agreement, they were required to relinquish control of Korea. This division led to the Korean War in 1950, which further solidified the separation between the two countries. North and South Korea now remain separate nations with their own distinct cultures and political systems.

March 1st Movement 

 The March 1st Movement in 1919 is the beginning of a new era and revolution and a symbol of resistance, participation and justice. Koreans tried to tell the world about the injustice. So, all different sections of the people, regardless of gender, declared solidarity and became one... Including writing a declaration and spreading it and shouting " Hail Independence!” and "Dongnip Manse" the revolution started. Some of them left the country, but others created works. Others followed the Japanese. In 1911, China was the seat of international activity and at that time the centre of the independence movement outside of Shanghai, and for Koreans, Shanghai was the base of operations for various groups, including the Provisional Government of the Republic of Korea and the Patriot Corps. But living in Shanghai for Koreans had challenges such as adapting to the weather and meeting the needs of life. Nevertheless, Koreans established schools to cultivate their skills and participated in the March 1st movement. People clashed over the activities of the Provisional Government in China, and some opposed it as spies and refused to recognize the Provisional Government. In the meantime, disgruntled family members and government assistants had to endure the hardships of exile. Therefore, such events should be recorded in history to present the right view to the people.

Korean Independence Day 

 The National Liberation Day of Korea, also known as the Independence of Korea, is probably one of the most important national holidays in South Korea and it is the final celebration of the dark era of Korean history. In Korea, National Liberation Day is called 광복절, which means "recovering the bright day". When the Japanese occupied the Korean peninsula, during the Japanese oppression, many Koreans resisted the Japanese and many even died. (삼일절) samil Day in early March is a reminder of one of the most important uprisings of this period. On Samil Day, several Korean nationalists declared Korea independent. About 25 years later, after Samil Day, Korea abandoned the Japanese rulers and in 1945 Korea was released, and three years later, on August 15, 1948, the Republic of Korea was officially established. National Freedom Day (August 15) (as opposed to Samil Day (March 1) and National Foundation Day (October 3) are called National Freedom Day (Korea Independence Day). Samil Day, the protest against Japanese rule that led to the liberation of Korea 25 years later, National Foundation Day 개천절 on October 3rd is celebrated around the foundation of Korea and legends about how it was formed. On this day, the government organizes an official ceremony and has an official song. August 15 is one of the few holidays celebrated in both North and South Korea, North Korea also celebrates the end of the Japanese occupation.

The spark of the awakening of Iranians

During the time of the Safavid kings, Iran was one of the most important trade routes and was considered one of the absolute powers of the region. But after years and with the arrival of newly emerging powers that were mostly European countries and used advanced equipment, tools and industry, Iran was gradually marginalized; This expulsion made the Safavid kings weak, and they lost their rule over Iran in a few years, and later the Qajar dynasty began to rule. During the time of Qajar, Iran had become very fragile and during the years of war with the Russians and the British soldiers put pressure on Iran from the side of India, which had become one of their colonies, and separated many lands from Iran. But this spark of liberation came when people like Mirza Taghi Khan Farahani famous to Amir Kabir and others started seeing the system and the way other countries function and progress. They knew that the only way to deal with the domination of foreigners on their land is only through progress and double efforts; Although their efforts were fruitless and they were abandoned one by one by the domination of foreigners, who were the Russians and the British, but they opened a new horizon for the Iranian people to increase their knowledge by going to France and European countries. Due to their weakness and the great power of England and the tsars, the Qajar kings had given them many concessions and imposed exorbitant loans on the country that Iran was unable to repay. The country was getting poorer day by day, and the rule of foreigners awakened the voice of the people, and the 1905 Russian revolution had also become an example for Iranian protestors.

Constitutional movement

On December 12, 1905, Tehran, the ruler of Tehran, to quell the protest of the people due to the increase in the price of sugar and tea, bastinado several merchants of Tehran. As a result, the traders closed the shops, and the bazaars and religious leaders, who had a very strong bond between them, started protesting. The government finally surrendered and accepted the demands of the protestors, but the Shah was not that strong and could not cope with the demands that were made, and the protests were more intense, and Muzaffaruddin Shah(king) issued the constitutional decree on August 5, 1905, and the Supreme parliament was established.

The constitution reduced the power and authority of the king and changed the absolute monarchy to a constitutional monarchy, which increased the power of the common people, which made the Russians unhappy, and on the other hand, the British tried to influence the Supreme Parliament by maintain their power in another way. But a few days after the emperor signed the constitutional decree, his son took power. This change of position caused a fierce conflict between the parliament and the new king, and violence engulfed the entire capital. The first move was the assassination of Prime Minister Mohammad Ali Shah, and then the assassination of the king himself; Mohammad Ali Shah was very angry and shot the Constituent parliament down. And at the same time, in 1908, a treaty called Saint Petersburg was signed, which recognized Russian influence over the northern regions and British influence over the southern regions.

Following these events, a civil war was formed; In these events, the three key cities of Isfahan, Tabriz and Rasht were the centers of armed confrontations. Tabriz in 1909, the constitutional forces completely besieged the city on February 2nd, but with the agreement of England and Russia, the Russians entered Iran to break the siege and broke the siege, but the resistance spread to smaller towns and villages. On the other side, Isfahan and Rasht were captured by the constitutionalists and after some time they rushed to Tehran to end the reign of Mohammad Ali Shah once and for all. Finally, after three days of conflict, Mohammad Ali Shah took refuge in the Russian embassy and was deposed and his son replaced him.

However, there were many differences between the constitutionalists and many changes were going to sweep the world. Later, the Qajar dynasty fell apart and the Pahlavi dynasty began, but the country was still under the control of the Soviet Union from the north and Britain from the south, and finally these two countries under the pretext of the illusion that Iran violated the principle of neutrality in the war by being friends with Nazi Germany, north and the South occupied Iran to provide supplies and send equipment to each other.

The official occupation of Iran by the Allies (Great Britain, Soviet Union)

The Allies, who saw Iran's position as very strategic, could not ignore this country, which supplied them with supplies, the transfer of food and ammunition for war, and most importantly, oil. The people of Iran spent many years being persecuted by the occupying forces and suffering from famine and hunger. The invaders faced a lot of resistance, but finally, in 1942, they occupied two major parts of Iran. Later, Reza Shah Pahlavi was fired and his son replaced him. In 1943, a historic conference was held in Tehran with the presence of Franklin Roosevelt, Stalin and Churchill, and they pointed to the territorial integrity of Iran but still all of them wanted a huge share of Iran's oil. Although Iran was illusory and liberated that day, the oil was still in the hands of the occupiers. Finally, the domination of the occupiers over Iran's oil was also cut off; It was nationalized in 1951 by Mohammad Mosadegh, and this was the end of several years of foreign domination over different parts of Iran.



●How Japan Took Control of Korea (


●The Iranian Constitutional Revolution Evolution 1906-1911 by Janet Afari

●Pordeli, Mohammad Reza (Winter 2016). "Investigating the Causes of Famine in Iran During World War I" 

●Suri, Narges; Shariati Mazinani, Sara (summer 2017). "Investigating the Intended and Unintended Consequences of the Constitutional Amendment Legitimacy Project in the First Constitution"

Iman Ghasemi
28 Mar 2023
Views 15

Topic: Korea’s Traditional paintings 

Name:   Iman Ghasemi Deligani, Aisa Eshaghi, Nilufar Hosseinizadeh

Brief introduction: this article tried to explain and open a door to Korean traditional paintings and help people to learn about the history of paintings and genres of Korea.


Korean’s traditional paintings brief history 

Korea’s Traditional paintings 

Korean paintings genres :

Landscape painting 

Folk painting 


Korean’s traditional paintings brief History

from the Three Kingdoms period (1st century BC-AD 7th century) to modern times, Korean paintings and art went throw many transformations. Art in the nearby countries was mutually influenced by each other, so the roots of the arts cannot be separated from each other. The first proper paintings were painted around the fourth century, during the Three Kingdoms. Each of the ancient nations of Korea developed its own style, at this time the mutual influence with China happened, and despite strong influences from China and close cultural exchange amongst themselves, Korea managed to develop its own unique art and focus on that and also their painting styles and tradition was transmitted to Japan and contributed to the development of Japanese art. 

During the Goryeo period, the nature of art had slightly changed and artists began to paint for spiritual sakes even many paintings were painted by whom painting was not an occupation but a hobby. Another important development in this period was drawing landscape paintings based on actual sketches. During the Goryeo period, many types of portraits became popular, from kings’ portraits to officials and monks. Portraits of Buddhist painting were especially common and popular in this era and also these types of Goryeo Buddhist paintings are some of the most seen paintings in Japan’s art. The Buddhist paintings of the Goryeo period were known as masterpieces due to their brilliant colors, forms, brilliant brushwork, and religious symbolism.

The Joseon era which was the golden age of Korean art made a mark on Korea’s art history. Art academies were established and capable artists were trained. Korea’s art developed and Korean painters were able to showcase their own styles. Also, at this time Korean artists had a great part in the development of ink painting in Japan. During the Joseon era landscape paintings also developed into a more advanced art by using more vivid colors and also focusing on Korea’s own landscape and showing more awareness compared to previous eras which painters used to follow the steps of the Goryeo painters and Chinese-influenced arts from Ming and Song dynasties paintings got more popular by showcasing the cultures through more colorful paintings. Folk painting, on the other hand, became more and more popular in the last years of the Joseon era, because people could connect and understand them way easier, and understanding folk paintings didn’t need the artistic sense which other types of paintings needed. During the final years of Joseon, the paintings were marked by strong individuality and became the basis for modern Korean painting.

Korea’s Traditional painting

Human beings have always paid attention to art and its beauty. The simple painting on the walls of the cave and the engraving on the woods, stones, and other tools is a proof of that. During ancient times painting used to be a consisting of simple drawings with black color usually showing simple events of group dancing and hunting. As time goes, arts and paintings got more advanced and are located in different parts of the world making them more distinguished.

As for Korea, this nation has always been into art, having different areas of interest such as calligraphy, Minhwa(folk painting), Korean porcelain, poetry, and literature. Paintings in particular are probably the most famous ones. The traditional Korean painting is known for its eye-catching work of colors, but it has something much more than pretty pictures. Also, painting was a very common way to record events in the past, making paintings and drawings one of the most important elements of history. Paintings are able to show the progress of culture over time. By looking at the paintings we can realize what the world of Koreans was like in past and what they wished to be, which continues to influence the way Koreans think and believe about this even now. 

Korean artists expressed a unique Korean view of the world.  The art of painting also went on different transformations in different periods of the country’s history, got influenced by other nations, and also influenced some others. All these show the importance of art. Even though traditional paintings have less variety compared to paintings and art at the moment, but still have interesting topics to enjoy. Over the centuries, Korean artists have produced an array of works and through the various forms of Korean painting, they showed the life and mind of people. Korean painting shows a connection with nature and it is always evident in their paintings and they have a deep respect for it. In Korean paintings instead of details, the artist often shows a bigger view of nature, and also beautiful natural shapes and colors can be seen in the paintings. Korean painting contains several forms and genres; Sansuhwa ("Mountain and Water Painting") which are the most famous ones, folk paintings, portraits, and others.

Korean paintings genre

Landscape painting

Korean landscape painting has always been known for displaying the beauty of nature, by using Indian ink and Asian tools, painters who were fascinated by nature, usually showcased the landscapes of other countries and in the late Joseon era, they started to focus more and more on Korea’s own lands. Landscape painting was considered one of the highest forms of art, especially in the Joseon era. These landscape paintings were not focused on the details of nature but tried to show the bigger point of view of the landscapes using basic colors. The most famous landscape painting is probably Inwang Jesaekdo (1751) by Jeong Seon (1676 – 1759).

Folk paintings

Another form of painting is minhwa or Folk painting. Folk painting’s popularity rose from the 17th to 19th centuries, and interest in them remained high until the end of the Joseon era. Folk paintings reflect the common beliefs and hopes of the Joseon people. These paintings focus on the lives of ordinary people and show their cultures and traditions, using more colors. Many of these folk paintings were painted by unknown commoners, by people who haven’t had professional training. while landscape paintings were usually painted by more famous ones. Even though some of the painters of these high-level arts were professionals, they painted ordinary elders and even ordinary people to show their inner states and part of their lives. For this reason, it makes Korean painting very accessible.


Portraits were another type of painting, usually painted for kings, high-class families, officials, and aristocrats, or the subject could be kings, Buddhist monks, elderly officials, women, and literati (sadaebu). The Buddhist paintings of the Goryeo period were known as masterpieces due to their forms, brushwork, and religious symbolism. Portraits of respected priests were produced and kept in temples all over the country. Fortunately, many of these Buddhist paintings survived until today. Especially noteworthy among Goryeo's portraits of high priests that still exist today are Bojo's portrait (1158-1210) and Jingak’s portrait (1178-1234). The Goryeo court had a pavilion in which the portraits of its kings were enshrined in there, but unfortunately, only two of the many royal portraits are available now; one of them is a painting of the Goryeo founder Taejo (r. 918-943), and one the other one is a painting of King Gongmin (r. 1351-1374) and his wife.


Traditional Painting Window on the Korean Mind (Rober Koehler et al.)
25 Oct 2022
Views 31

Topic:   Iran and Korea's contemporary wars 

Name:   Iman Ghasemi Deligani, Zahra Rezvani, Nilufar Hosseinizadeh

Brief introduction: this article has been started with the Iranian wars and some same period when Iran was in the same situation as Korea. Also, we discussed the events that happened after the second world war in Korea.

Iran crisis of 1946, Azerbaijan Crisis 

 Azerbaijan uprising, the most important crisis in the Middle East region, was carried out by the Soviets and the British in August 1941 with the occupation of Iran under the pretext of supplying Soviet food supplies from the north and south.  The Allies were afraid that the Shah of Iran would join Hitler, and the Soviet Union, which was struggling hard to get rid of the pressure from Nazi Germany, saw Iran as the only solution for providing supplies and ammunition.  In August 1941, Iran was occupied and Reza Shah was quickly removed and exiled and replaced by his son Mohammad Reza.  At the end of World War II, Britain and the Soviet Union pledged to leave Iran, but the Soviet Union refused to do so from the north and northwest and they started to establish an autonomous government in the northwest of Iran.  The names of these two were the National Government of Azerbaijan and the Republic of Mahabad;  According to the obtained documents, these two governments were directly ordered by Stalin and allocated 1 million rubles and appointed Jafar Pishevari as the leader of these two territories. These groups dominated this region from December 1945 to December 1946, and in the meantime, a large number of people in the region migrated to other cities, especially Tehran, and according to the available documents, the people did not want Stalin's communist government and they preferred Iran to be their home. Finally, with the pressure of the Prime Minister of Iran at the time, with the support of the United States and the promise of handing over the northern oil to the Russians, he was able to expel the Soviet Union army;  As soon as the Soviet Union army left, the imperial army of Iran entered the northwestern regions, and two republics, National Azerbaijan and Mahabad fell and once again joined the arms of their homeland.  But unlike Iran, in Korea at the same time when the Second World War ends in 1945 and Japan is defeated after 35 years of domination, Korea cannot keep itself united and as a result, the US supports the South and the North Soviet Union, the Korean peninsula is finally divided into two poles in pressure of two foreign countries. 

The war between the Qajar kingdom (Iran) and the Ottoman kingdom (Treaties of Erzurum)

The war between the two countries lasted from 1821 to 1823. Iran, which during the reign of the Qajar kings had seen nothing but defeat during 10 years of numerous wars with Russia and had led to the loss of many areas of the country with shameful treaties, now has a fearless crown prince named Abbas Mirza. Abbas Mirza tried to restore Iran's glory by modernizing the army and inviting British advisers to help train the soldiers. Abbas Mirza was looking for an excuse to show Iran's defeat to the Ottomans. The Ottomans invaded Iran in 1821 under the pretext of suppressing the rebels, and this was the excuse that the Crown Prince of Iran needed. The crown prince went near Baghdad with an army and was able to capture a lot of lands; The Ottomans prepared an army to respond to the attacks of the crown prince of Iran. The Ottoman army suffered many defeats in previous wars and lost a large part of its thitsrtillery. But these victories did not last long because cholera swept the army of Iran and both sides of the war who had suffered a lot of losses signed a treaty called Erzurum in 1823.

Several years later, when Iran was involved in the separation of Herat province by England and the East India Company, Alireza Pasha one of the Ottoman governors was accused of the crime of capturing Khorramshahr and damaged. The governments of the two countries continued until the start of the war, but with the mediation of Russia and England, the two countries and the representative of the two mediating countries talked together in meetings near the border, and in May 1847, the Erzurum II agreement was reached. Although Iran and Ottomans never reached peace with each other in a peaceful way and they always sought to threaten each other. We also should mention that the Ottoman and Iran issues came back to the Safavid dynasty.

Iran - Iraq war

The Iran-Iraq war has an older history in the Pahlavi Kingdom of Iran, where Saddam came to power and created fierce competition between the two countries. The fall of the Pahlavi regime and the revolution, which had destroyed most of the important centers and shot most of the army generals, allowed Iraq to seize several Iranian cities with a lightning strike. Saddam Hussein, the president of Iraq at the time, promised to conquer Tehran in less than a week, but he was surprised by Basig mobilization and advanced American and British equipment, which was left over from the time of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. First of all, Khorramshahr was free, and in the following years, it was Iran that advanced in Iraq until the conquest of Basra, one of Iraq's major cities, was not far from expected. Saddam Hussein now turned to cruel measures, targeted Iraqi Kurdish cities that had been captured by Iranians with chemical weapons, and many Iranians and Iraqis lost their lives, and also attacked the war zones with chemical weapons; He also started air raids on residential houses in Tehran, Isfahan, Khuzestan, etc. After 7 years and several months, both countries could not continue the war with a high number of casualties and wounded and many prisoners. Also, foreign countries were afraid that these two oil and gas-rich countries would break the balance of the energy markets, so they tried so that none of these two countries would win this war. Finally, the second long classical war of the 20th century ended with resolution 598 of the UN Security Council, and the country of Iraq was recognized as the aggressor and the initiator of the war, and the UN special group in 1992, after investigations, estimated the direct war damage of Iraq to Iran at 99 billion dollars and Indirect damage was announced at 150 billion dollars. Although Iran has announced the amount of damage caused by 1000 billion dollars. But still, after many years, Iraq has not paid any payment to Iran. According to limited information from the two countries, the Iran-Iraq war has left nearly one million dead and wounded.

Korea under Japanese rules

When Japan, in face of her repeated pledges, annexed Korea, her statesmen adopted an avowed policy of assimilation. They attempted to turn the people of Korea into Japanese—an inferior brand of Japanese, a serf race, speaking the language and following the customs of their overlords, and serving them.

To accomplish this better, the Koreans were isolated, not allowed to mix freely with the outer world, and deprived of liberty of speech, person, and press. The Japanese brought certain material reforms. They forgot to supply one thing; justice. Men of progressive ideas were seized and imprisoned in such numbers that a new series of prisons had to be built. In six years, the total of prisoners convicted or awaiting trial doubled. 

Division of Korea

Japan annexed Korea in 1910 and ruled the country until the end of World War II. Unlike the Soviet Union, in 1945 the United States attached little strategic importance to Korea. At the Potsdam Conference, Soviet authorities told American representatives that the Soviets would attack Korea after declaring war on Japan, but the collapse of Japan in August 1945 made a major assault unnecessary. As a line to divide Korea into Soviet and American areas for accepting Japanese surrender, the U.S. War Department selected the 38th Parallel, roughly splitting the country in half. The Soviets agreed to operate in the north, and the American forces would operate in the south. 

By 1949 both the United States and the Soviet Union had withdrawn the majority of their troops from the Korean Peninsula. Failure to agree on a plan for Korean unification then resulted in two states forming: The democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea) and the Republic of Korea (South Korea). Neither government recognized the parallel as a permanent legitimate boundary. The thirty-eighth parallel was fortified, and border incidents began breaking out.

Korean War

North Korea likely decided on a conventional war after South Korea severely reduced the guerrilla threat in the winter of 1949-50; this decision was made possible by the return of the Korean Volunteer Army from China – a force that had trained under the Chinese communists and had participated in the Chinese Civil War. China probably offered more support than the USSR for going to war. 

As early as 1947 the North Korean Communists employed propaganda and even armed violence to instigate the overthrow of the South Korean government. On 3 May 1949, the North Koreans launched their first open attack across the 38th Parallel in the vicinity of Kaesong, but ROK units repulsed them. Hundreds of small-scale assaults occurred across the parallel during the first half of 1950; however, some encounters inflicted heavy casualties on both sides. A series of guerrilla uprisings on the island of Cheju-do spread to the mainland by late 1948, but by June 1950 the ROK Army had virtually eliminated them, claiming to have killed about 5,000 insurgents. 

On June 25, 1950, North Korea launched its invasion of South Korea. The South Korean army was overwhelmed and resistance collapsed. Within a month, the South Korean army, along with four US Army divisions, were forced southward down the Korean Peninsula to a small area – a territory 140 kilometers long and 90 kilometers wide – around Pusan, on the southeastern tip of the peninsula. North Korean forces failed to break through to Pusan and American reinforcements rapidly poured into the Korean foothold.

Meanwhile, the United Nations Security Council met in an emergency session and passed a resolution calling for the assistance of all UN members in halting the North Korean invasion. In sum, fifteen UN member states contributed to armed forces and support units to assist South Korea. An American general, Douglas MacArthur, was given overall command of the United Nations forces in Korea.

38th Parallel North

The course of the war changed abruptly on September 15th when UN forces launched an amphibious assault at Inchon – about 160 km below the 38th parallel and on a line with Seoul – effectively cutting off the North Korean army massed around Pusan. The North Korean army was then totally shattered by the convergence of UN forces from north and south, and more than 125,000 prisoners were captured. As UN forces advanced northward back to the 38th parallel, the Chinese warned that the presence of UN forces in North Korea would be unacceptable and would force the Chinese to intervene; the warnings were ignored and UN forces advanced into North Korea with the expressed intention of unifying the country. From at least October 27, 1950, Chinese armed forces were beginning to engage in fighting.

By mid-November, UN forces were nearing the Yalu River, the border between North Korea and China. On November 24th MacArthur announced his planned "Home by Christmas" offensive, in which UN forces would advance to the Yalu River. The next day approximately 180,000 Chinese troops launched a counter-offensive, and by December 15th, after bitter winter fighting and a harrowing retreat, UN forces were driven southward back to the 38th parallel. On December 31st, the North Koreans, now with Chinese military support, began their second invasion of South Korea but the attack faltered and the front lines eventually stabilized along the 38th parallel

After a brief renewal of hostilities in June 1953, an armistice was concluded on July 27, 1953, and the front line was accepted as the de facto boundary between North and South Korea.


•     George Lenczowski, Russia and the West in Iran (1949)

•    Sepehr Zabih. The Communist Movement in Iran, Berkeley, 1966

•    Rajaee, Farhang (1997). Iranian Perspectives on the Iran–Iraq War

•    Masters, Bruce (1991). "The Treaties of Erzurum (1823 and 1848) and the Changing Status of Iranians in the Ottoman Empire"

•    The Korean War: The Outbreak _ William J.Webb

Iman Ghasemi
20 Sep 2022
Views 28

Topic:   Top four Korean fairytales

Name:   Iman Ghasemi Deligani, Zahra Rezvani, Nilufar Hosseinizadeh

Brief introduction: it's about the top 4 Korean fairytales which are very popular in Korean literature and also gives some information about international fairytales around the world 


Today, fairy tales are known for elements such as elves, goblins, dragons, dwarves, giants, magic, and wizards. Fairy tales are short stories in the folklore genre that try to tell a story with different elements that may be true or generally unreal or true. At some point, epic stories are mixed with fairy tales, but it should be known that these two are completely different from each other.

Jātakas stories that show the Buddha's teachings are created from the combination of local stories and legends, and the Buddha appears in his previous births in the form of animals and humans. These Jātakas stories are one of the most important literary books of India, and one of its stories have been left in the Sogdian language, which is one of the Iranian languages.

Now, many words have been said about how fairy tales and other stories are distinguished from each other. Stat Thompson points out that talking animals and magic appear to be more present in the fairy tale than the fairies themselves. However, the mere presence of talking animals does not make a story a fairy tale, especially when the animal is a human mask, as in fairy tales.

And Steven Swan Jones identified the presence of magic as a feature by which fairy tales can be distinguished from other types of folktales. Davidson and Chaudry identify "metamorphosis" as a key feature of the genre, and Italo Calvino refers to fairy tales as speed in literature because of the aesthetic brevity of fairy tales.

And finally, considering that there are two types of oral and written fairytales, and in the oral part, especially in the 17th century, there was a possibility and even happening that these fairytales were transferred to other cultures and other places and even underwent changes. After years, in the 18th century, many folklorists tried to recover these fairytales, which were very pure and were even older than the written versions.

Chilseok 칠석


No bird is more common in Korea than the magpie. They are numbered by millions. Every day in the year, except the seventh day of the seventh month, the air is full of them. On that date, They are all expected to be away from streets and houses, for every well-bred magpie is then far up in the sky building a bridge across the River of Stars, called the Milky Way.

Boys and girls are usually very kind to the magpies, but if a single one is found about the houses, on the roofs, or in the streets on the seventh of August, woe betide it! Every dirty-faced brat throws sticks or stones at the poor creature, for not being about its business of bridge-building across the Starry River. By evening time, the magpies return to their usual places, for they are then supposed to have attended to their tasks and built the bridge. With their wings for the cables, and their heads to form the floor of the bridge, they make a pathway for lovers on either side of the Silver Stream.

Now, this is the story that Korean mothers tell their children of the Bridge of Birds.

Long, long ago, in the Kingdom of the Stars, a king reigned who had a lovely daughter. Besides being the most beautiful to behold, she was a skillful weaver. There was no good thing to be done in the palace, but she could do it. She was not only highly accomplished but of a sweet temper and very willing. Being a model of all diligence, she was very greatly beloved by her parents and her influence over her father was very great. He would do almost anything to please his darling daughter.

In due time a young and very handsome prince, who lived in Star Land, came to her father’s court and fell in love with the pretty princess. Her parents consented, and the wedding was celebrated with great splendor.

Now that she was a wife and had a home of her own to care for, she became all the more a model of lovely womanhood and an example to all the maidens of Korea forever. Besides showing diligence in the care of clothes and food and in setting her servants a good example of thrift, she thought much of their happiness. Her service to her husband was unremitting. Her chief ambition was to make his life one of constant joy. But the prince, instead of following his bride’s good example, and appreciating what his beautiful and unselfish bride was doing for his happiness, gave himself up to waste and extravagance. He became lazy and dissipated. Neglecting his duties, he wasted his fortune and his wife’s dowry. He sold all his oxen and calves to get money only to lose it in gambling. He borrowed many long ropes of the coin from anyone who would lend him the brass and iron money. Finally, he was so scandalously poor, being on his last string of cash, that he was in danger of being degraded from his rank as a prince, and of having his name spoken with contempt.

The King of the Stars, having seen his son-in-law on the downward way, had more than once threatened to disinherit, or banish him, especially after the prince had parted with his cattle. Yet when his daughter, the young wife, interceded and begged pardon for her husband, the king relented, paid his son-in-law’s debts, and gave him another chance to do better. When, however, the worthless fellow fell back into his old ways, and grew worse and worse, the king resolved to separate the pair, one from the other. He banished the prince, far, far away, six months’ distance from the north side of the River of Heaven, and exiled the princess a half year’s measure of space from the south side of the Starry Stream.

Although the king in his wrath had hardened his heart, even against his beloved child, and had driven her from court and palace, because of her worthless husband, as a signal proof of his compassion, he ordained that on one night of the year, on the seventh night of the seventh moon, they might meet for a few hours.

The young people parted and took their sad journey to the edge of the starry heavens, but they loved each other so dearly that, as soon as they arrived at their place of banishment, they turned round to meet each other on August 7th.

So, when the day came, after six months of weary journeying, they had reached the edge of the Starry River, and there they stood, catching glimpses and waving their hands, but unable to get closer to each other. There one may see them on summer nights shining on opposite sides of the broad Stream of Stars, loving each other but unable to cross.

Feeling that the great gulf of space could not be spanned, the loving couple burst into tears. The flood from their eyes, making the river overflow, deluged the earth below, threatening to float everything, houses, people, and animals away. 

The four-footed creatures, fish and fowls, held a convention, but it was agreed that only those birds with strong wings and able to fly high could do anything. So, the magpies, with many flattering speeches, were commended to the enterprise.

When these noisy and chattering creatures, that are nevertheless so kind and friendly to the sparrows, heard of the lover’s troubles aloft, they resolved to help the sorrowing pair over the River of Stars. Out of their big, ugly nests, they flew gladly to the convention that voted to build the bridge. Sending out the word all over the world, millions of magpies assembled in the air. Under the direction of their wisest chiefs, they began their work of making, with a mass of wings, a flying bridge that would reach from shore to shore of the Starry Stream.

First, they put their heads together to furnish a floor, and, so closely, that the bridge looked as if it were paved with white granite. Then with their opinions, they held up the great arch and highway, over

which the prince crossed to his bride with all his baggage and train of followers. The tables were soon spread and the two royal lovers enjoyed a feast, with many tender words and caresses.

Every year, for ages past, on the seventh day of the seventh month, the magpies have done this. Indeed, although the star lovers meet only once a year, as they live on forever the wife has her husband and the husband his wife much longer than mortal couples who live on earth. It is law in the magpie kingdom that no bird can shirk this work.

Any magpie that tries to get out of the task and that is too bad or lazy to do its part in bridge building, is chased away by the Korean children, who want no such truant around. 

On August 7th, If it is wet weather on the morning of this day of the Weaver Maiden and the Cattle Prince, the raindrops are the tears of joy shed by the lovers at their first meeting. If showers fall in the afternoon, they are the tears of sadness at saying farewell, when the prince and princess leave each other. If any thunder is heard, every boy and girl know that this comes from the rumble of the wagons which carry the baggage of the prince and princess, as they move away, each from the other, homeward.


Tokgabi is the most mischievous sprite in all Korean fairylands. He does not like the sunshine or outdoors, and no one ever saw him on the streets. He lives in the sooty flues that run under the floors along the whole length of the house, from the kitchen at one end of it to the chimney hole in the ground at the other end. He delights in the smoke and smut and does not mind fire or flame, for he likes to be where it is warm. He has no lungs, and his skin and eyes are both fire-proof. He is as black as night and loves nothing that has white in it. He is always afraid of a bit of silver, even if it is only a hairpin.

Tokgabi likes most to play at night in the little loft over the fireplace. To run along the rafters and knock down the dust and cobwebs is his delight. His favorite game is to make the iron rice-pot lid dance up and down so that it tumbles inside the rice kettle and cannot easily be got out again. Oh, how many times the cook burns, scalds, or steams her fingers in attempting to fish out that pot lid when Tokgabi has pushed it in! 

But Tokgabi is not always mischievous, and most of his capers hurt nobody. He is such a merry fellow that he keeps continually busy, whether people cry or laugh. He does not mean to give anyone trouble, but he must have fun every minute, especially at night. When the fire is out, how he does chase the mice up and down the flues under the floor, and up in the garret over the rafters! When the mouses lie dead on their backs, with their toes turned upward, the street boys take them outdoors and throw them up in the air. Before the mice fall to the ground, the hawks swoop down and eat them up.

Although Tokgabi plays so many pranks, he is kind to the kitchen maids. When after a hard day’s work, one is so tired out that she falls asleep, he helps her to do her hard tasks. Tokgabi washes their dishes and cleans their tables for good servants; so, when they wake up the girls find their work done for them. Many a fairy tale is told about this jolly sprite’s doings—how he gives good things to the nice people and makes the bad ones mad by spitefully using them. They do say that the king of all the Tokgabis has a museum of curiosities and a storehouse full of gold and gems and fine clothes, and everything sweet to eat for good boys and girls and for old people that are kind to the birds and dumb animals. For bad folks, he has all sorts of things that are ugly and troublesome. He punishes stingy people by making them poor and miserable.

The Tokgabi king has also a menagerie of animals. These he sends to do his errands rewarding the good and punishing naughty folks. Every year the little almanac with red and green covers tells in what quarter of the skies the Tokgabi king lives for that year so that the farmers and country people will keep out of his way and not provoke him. In his menagerie, the kind creatures that help human beings are the dragon, bear, tortoise, frog, dog, and rabbit. These are all man’s friends. The cruel and treacherous creatures in Tokgabi’s menagerie are the tiger, wild boar, leopard, serpent, toad, and cat. These are the messengers of the Tokgabi king to do his bidding when he punishes naughty folks. The common, everyday Tokgabi plays fewer tricks on the men and boys and enjoys himself more by bothering the girls and women. This, I suppose, is because they spend more time in the house than their fathers or brothers. In the Land of Rat-tat-tat, where the sound of beating the washed clothes never ceases, Tokgabi loves to get hold of the women’s laundry sticks which are used for pounding and polishing the starched clothes. He hides them so that they cannot be found. Then Daddy makes a fuss because his long white coat has to go without its usual gloss, but it is all Tokgabi’s fault. If Daddy should get his topknot caught in a rat hole, or his head should slip off his wooden pillow at night and he bumps his nose, it is all Tokgabi’s fault. When anything happens to a boy’s long braid of hair, that hangs down his back and makes him look so much like a girl, Tokgabi is blamed for it. It is even said that naughty men make compacts with Tokgabi to do bad things, but the imp only helps the man for the fun of it. Tokgabi cares nothing about what mortal men call right or wrong. He is only after fun and is up to mischief all the time, so one must watch out for him.

Tokgabi does not like starch because it is white. He loves to dance on Daddy’s big black hat case that hangs on the wall. Sometimes he wiggles the fetich or household idol, that is suspended from the rafters. But, most of all, he enjoys dancing a jig among the dishes in the closet over the fireplace, making them rattle and often tumble down with a crash.

The kitchen maids and the men think they know how to circumvent Tokgabi and spoil his tricks. Knowing that the imp does not like red, a young man when betrothed wears clothes of this bright color. Tokgabi is afraid of shining silver, too, so the men fasten their topknots together, and the girls keep their chignons in shape, with silver hairpins. The magistrates and government officers have little storks made of solid silver in their hats, or else these birds are embroidered with silver thread on their dresses. Everyone who can afford them uses white metal dishes and dresses in snowy garments. Tokgabi likes nothing white and that is the reason why every Korean like to put on clothes that are as dazzling as hoar frost. Tons and mountains of starch are consumed in blanching and stiffening coats and skirts, sleeves, and stockings. On festival days the people look as if they were dipped in starch and their garments encrusted in rock candy. In this manner, they protect themselves from the pranks of Tokgabi.

The Unmannerly Tiger 

This story is a symbol of selfish, ungrateful people who think that they can bully and win everywhere.

Korean families tell this story to teach their children not to be selfish and ungrateful.

A tiger lived in the highland of Kang Wen in a province that from its cliffs overlooked the Sea of Japan, and the villagers gave him the nickname of the mountain uncle. He was very proud among the tigers and boasted of himself and often when the hunters attacked him he was never injured. He was aware of all traps and knew the tools of humans. He lived on high hills in the summer. And when he would go to the village and prowl the stables to hunt a calf or a pig or a donkey, he would often succeed and the people around him would be very afraid of him. 

One autumn day, when he went to the village and was very hungry, he was very careful about hunters and traps, and he didn't think they were close to him. Coming around a big rock, he saw a tiger like himself, and he waved his tail and prepared to fight, and for sure it would be a terrible fight, and he expected to win, and with a jump in the air, he landed in a pit, and a heavy lid fell on him and the pit was closed. And it got dark.

Mountain uncle had often beheld his face and body in water when he stooped to drink but this time not seeing any water he was deceived into thinking a real tiger wanted to fight him.

The hunter had hidden the hole with sticks and leaves. A Buddhist priest arrived who believed in being kind to all living creatures, and hearing the animal moaning, he opened the trap and saw mountain uncle, whose paw was bruised and he said: please Mr. man let me get out I'm hurt badly 

the priest helped him and the tiger went up and grateful the priest and said, I am very grateful to you for helping me, but I am very hungry and I must eat you up

The priest was surprised and angry and protested his ingratitude and said that this behavior is against the law of the mountain he asked the spirit of the tree and he answered him that the man should be freed, but the uncle of the mountain was still not satisfied, the spirit of the rock told the uncle of the mountain that if this priest If you eat it, you will be punished, and if you are so ungrateful as to eat the man who saved you from death, and this behavior is very bad. The tiger was ashamed, but he was very hungry. The priest appointed the toad as a judge to be sure. The toad was wise and said that I should go and see the trap to make a decision. They all went to the trap while the toad and the tiger were investigating. The priest ran away from the gate. The monastery saved itself. And finally, the speckled back investigated the issue and concluded in favor of the man

And the tiger is a cruel and ungrateful animal, and the mountain's uncle went crazy with hunger and anger, and his cunning turned into stupidity. His anger was increasing, he was losing his mind, his nose was rubbed in the crack and he was rubbed on uneven stones and he bled and died. The hunter came and was very surprised and became rich by selling a tiger's fur, bones, and claws; in Korea, nothing sells so well as a tiger.

The toad also told several of his generations about the deception of his mountain uncle.

Light And The Bridge Of Fishes (jomung) 주몽

A little background on the story the original is samguk sagi which gives a full account of jomung's parents Jomung is the Korean name for East Light and he is a founder of the Goguryeo kingdom

He's father Hema sue he came to earth from heaven his mother you ha is the daughter of the river god 

You ha and Hema sue got together she was touched by the beam of sunlight.

A long time ago, a kingdom lived in an area beyond the White Mountains in North Korea. that a handsome young female servant was waiting for him. Every day, he looked at him from the south side, where the dragon pool is inside the lofty peak, raising his white head to the sky. When he was tired of his daily work, he thought about the river from which the dragon pond flows. He hoped to have a son who would rule over a country with a rich river. One day, when he was watching the peak of the mountain, he saw a bright vapor floating like a white cloud from the east, it was getting closer and it hit his clothes. And very soon he had a son. His son was the most beautiful child, but the king was jealous and angry.

And he did not like that boy. He took the child and threw it into the pigsty, thinking that it was his last child, a boy, but no... The roosters breathed into the baby's nostrils and kept him alive. When the king's servants heard the child howl, they went out to see what Something happened. There they saw a happy baby who didn't care about his crib. They wanted to feed him, but the angry king didn't allow him and ordered him to put him in the stable. 

The servants took the boy and put him among the horses in the hope that he would be under the feet of the animals, and the adult female horses were kind and warmed the boy with their breath and gave him their milk. When the king heard the wonderful behavior of the pigs and horses, he bowed his head towards heaven. It seemed that the great will in heaven is that the boy should live and become a man. So he listened to his mother's prayer and allowed him to enter the palace. He grew up there and was raised like a king's son. He was a powerful young man skilled in shooting and very skilled in horse riding. He was very kind to animals and punished anyone who wronged a horse in the palace. Anyone who kills female horses intending to kill them will be killed. And that man was always kind to his animals 

And the king called him East Light. And he made him the master of the royal stable. East Light became very popular, he was called the son of the sun and the grandson of the Yellow River. One day, when he went to the mountains to hunt deer, the king asked him to show his shooting skills. East Light drew the bow and showed his skill and no one can match him and be like him. He shot the arrow behind his head at the target, and both moving deer and flying birds came down. Then everyone encouraged him, but the king was very jealous of him because of the fear that he might take over his government. The young boy could not do anything to make the king happy and he fled to a big and deep river in the south for fear of losing his life. He did not know how to cross there because there was no boat and he did not have time to build a boat because his enemies were chasing him behind him. He shouted: "Ah, can't I pass through here, son of the sun, grandson of the Yellow River?" As if the sun had whispered to him what to do 

He drew his bow and shot many arrows around and into the river until his quiver was almost empty. For a few moments, nothing happened until the water became turbulent and the fish swam towards the East Light and stuck their noses out of the water as if to him. They said to sit on your back we will save you a dense mass appeared behind them and it looked like a bridge and the men could stand on it. East Light shouted let's run quickly, see the king's horsemen coming down the hill following us. The four men ran behind the fish and reached the shore. The king's soldiers shot their arrows in vain to kill East Light and his three companions. The arrows fell short and The river was very deep and wide and the horses could not swim on it. The four men escaped unhurt, and seeing the procession a few miles away, they met three strange persons who seemed to be waiting for him. They welcomed him warmly and asked him to become king and rule. The first with seaweed, the second with hemp clothes, and the third with embroidered clothes

These men represented three classes of society. The first were fishermen and hunters. And the king's sugarcane was happily welcomed by the subjects. The men were tall, brave, and polite.

In addition to being good archers, they were also skilled riders. They ate in wooden bowls and used round dishes for occasions. They used to wear big pearl jewelry and cut red jade jewelry. The Fuyu people gave the most beautiful virgin to this king to be the bride of the king of East Light. She was a very kind queen and loved by her subjects and gave birth to many children. East Light reigned long and happily. Under his reign, the people of Fuyo became civilized and very prosperous. He taught correct governing relationships and marriage rules along with better cooking and home-building practices. He also showed them how to dress their hair. He introduced the wearing of the knot. 

For thousands of years, top knots were fashionable in Fuyu and Korea. Hundreds of years after the death of the East of Light, all the tribes and states in the peninsula south of the Eternal White Mountains wanted to become one nation and one kingdom, they called their country the East of Light, but in a more poetic form, - Cho-sen which means morning glow or land of the morning calm.


1.    Korean Fairy Tales by William Elliot Griffis

2.    Jataka Tales - by Ellen C. Babbitt 1912

3.    Thompson, Stith. Funk & Wagnalls Standard Dictionary of Folklore, Mythology & Legend, 1972 s.v. "Fairy Tale"
23 Apr 2022
Views 41

Topic: Korean family structure changes from 1950

Writers: Iman Ghasemi Deligani, zahra Rezvani, Ghazaleh Bagheri 

Short explanation: a brief explanation about changes that happened in different parts of families in Korea from 1950


The ideological Aspect 

The small family 

Historical Change Of Household Size

Family structure, rules 


The Ideological Aspect

The family was significantly influenced and transformed by Confucian moral teachings and ethics during Joseon society because the family was the alpha and omega of Korean Confucianism. In other words, among the virtues of Confucianism, the hyo (filial piety to parents) which symbolises patriarchal family structure, was regarded as the most sacred items in the Joseon belief system. Only Joseon society has ever made hyo the core of its social symbolic system. In Confucianism society was seen as woven with samgang i.e. three cardinal relationships; between the monarch and retainer, between parents and children, and between husbands and wives. In (benevolence) was regarded as the highest idea which stabilises and smoothes the society, and ye (courtesy, ritual) the social realisation and objective manifestation of in. To achieve ye, required the practice of o-ryun (five ethical norms). These were the norms of justice and righteousness between the ruler and his vassals: cordiality and closeness between parents and children: distinction between husbands and wives: order between elders and juniors: and trust between friends. Among them, Joseon literati interpreted hyo as the most absolute value which following the original idea of Neo-Confucianism emphasised moral and ethical principles in human relationships. To conclude, the ruling class made hyo the ethics of familial solidarity, stressing cordial devotion among consanguine relations, and made them the principles of harmonious cohesion for society and politics as a whole.

Hyo, largely speaking, had three characteristics in Joseon context; formality, absoluteness, and closedness. The uniqueness of hyo lay in its demand for formalised patterns of behaviour. It was not enough to feel respect only. Children were asked to show their thoughts and feelings in their behaviour and attitude. For example, they were expected neither to comb their hair nor to play a musical instrument when their parents are sick, but to wear only a worried look on their faces. They were asked to hang down their heads when they sat at the same table with their parents. Again they were not expected to turn their backs when they came out of their parents' room etc. In a word, there was a formalised pattern of behaviour from which the degree of hyo could be judged, and which was diffused everywhere deep into family life. Thus the hyo to parents was as seriously formal as the ceremony in relation to a foreign sovereign. The formality of Confucian morals was accelerated from 17th century and was most fully set out in The Handbook of Family Ritual (Sa-ryae-pyeonram) of Yi Jae in 1844. Korean family structure particularly affected by the Handbook, in marriage, inheritance, kinship, and rituals etc. Next, the hyo was, unlike the Eros or Philanthropy, regarded as an unconditional, one-way, and absolute obedience to parents, like Philos in the Bible. The essence of hyo was to make parents feel comfortable mentally and physically. There were two extreme cases during Joseon period, which showed the absoluteness of hyo to parents. A poor farmer was deeply devoted to his parents but was too poor to serve every member of his family. As a result he used to give the first priority to parents. One day, his beloved only son who were aged three was going to eat the food served to the peasant's parents. The peasant, however, thought that he could have as many children as he wanted after he got rich but his parents were the parents he would ever have and moreover would not live till he became rich. At length he decided secretly to bury his infant son alive, so as to support his parents more effectively. Going a step further, the absoluteness of hyo was extended even to the dead parents. For example, a son whose parents passed away, was expected to keep mourning for three years to show his hyo to the dead. In practice he ate crude gruel and water only with no sweet or savoury food like vegetables, meat, liquor, or fruit. He slept, without taking off his mourning dress, under a piece of straw mat instead of a bedquilt and laid his head on a lump of earth instead of a pillow. Furthermore he was expected to leave public life at least for three years and to ill-treat himself as a sinner. He was regarded as a sinner by himself and by his neighbours.

Lastly, hyo, in spite of its humanistic voice, was closed against some groups of people. In other word, the more the hyo idea was deepened and formalised, the mare some were severely alienated and dehumanised by Confucian familism. First of all it was closed against children and juniors. As mentioned above, the essence of hyo was not simply to take care of parents but to respect and follow their opinions unquestioningly. This was widely applied to juniors or subordinates. Hence any creative thoughts or any deviant behaviour from those prescribed in the formal Confucian doctrines were firmly suppressed and sometimes regarded even as a crime. They were asked only to follow ideas of their parents and seniors. This was one of the reasons why Confucianism was fossilised in the later half of Joseon dynasty.

Lastly it was closed against other families, other clans, and the wider society. As mentioned above, hyo to parents was not a rational love but a blind subordination. As a result, Hyo required a man to avenge his parents against their enemies and to welcome persons with whom his parents were pleased, in any case regardless of his father's rightness and wrongness. And it was defined as amoral to respect or love others instead of his own parents. Every kind of behaviour in life, even a success in life was not aimed for himself but to please his parents. It is quite natural that unconditional inclination to hyo shaped a family egoism exclusively against other families, other clans.

In conclusion, Korean familism can be described as a pattern of social organisation to which every kind of values is connected and formulated for the maintenance, continuance, and function of the family group composed of blood relations. Individuals can not be independent from the family, and primary importance is given to the family as a whole rather than each members themselves. 

Furthermore, it is the familial pattern of behaviour, social relation, and value system that was applied to every social area beyond the boundary of the family.


There are various factors that influenced the size of the Korean family. These can be summarised as socio-economic variables, cultural tradition, environmental variables, demographic conditions, etc.

Each of them has a significant influence in its own way on the size of the family. Among them, change in demographic elements has been the most direct and prompt one that influenced the size of the family. This has certainly been the case in Korea for the past more than half a century.

 the demographic transition of Korean families is divided into three stages: the early transitional period, the transitional period, and the post-transitional stage.

 The first stage is distinguished by high rates of both infertility and mortality, which are shown in underdeveloped countries.

 The second stage is marked by a decrease in both rates and the final stage is reached when the low level of both rates results in instability.

the early transitional stage was from the early 1910s to the early 1960s. this period is consist of many historical events like Japanese colonization, the second World War, Independence, the partition of the peninsula, and Civil War, etc. Each of them made a significant impact on demographic change in Korea. For example, the introduction of modern hygiene and medicine, the many deaths during the war, and the huge migration during the colonization were all these factors mingled to influence the demographic condition of the period. During this period the crude death rate (CDR) dropped from 35-40 per 1,000 persons to 25 from 1910-to 1930. 

the transitional stage(from the early 1960s to the early 1980s) was the most rapid decline in the fertility rate in the world and the total fertility rate(TFR) decreased from 6.0 to 2.7 persons.

The most critical reason for the rapid decline in the fertility rate was the success of the Family Planning Programme on the other hand. It was delivered as a part of the Economic Development Five-Year Plan. The second reason for the decline was the marriage age rising.

the post-transitional stage which commenced in 1983 has been characterized by an accelerated decline in the fertility level and the total fertility rate (TFR) decreased to 1.7. As a result, the population growth rate has decreased to below 1 percent.

Historical Change Of Household Size

The reason for the trend of a small families can be traced back to two facts. The first element was an increase in the average age at marriage. Together with an extension of education duration and an increase in women's participation rate in the labor market, both women and men felt no need to hurry up marriage. Self-development was preferred to the reproduction of the next generation. The second reason was the successful execution of the Family Planning program. This had more to do with a strong consensus on the small family norm. The population policies in Korea began to appear as a part of economic development planning. by having new political leadership in 1961, development planners realized that a high rate of population growth interfered with the most important national goal which was to raise income and eliminate poverty in the country. 

Therefore, family planning policies were very decisive, which included improving the social status of women and expanding contraceptive measures nationwide.

to a small family norm and fertility rates as surveyed by KIPH (Korea Institute for Population and Health Affairs) during the last three decades, women like to have no more than two children and no longer have the son-preference idea. The norm of 'three boys and two girls in the early 60s shifted to 'two boys and a girl during the 1970s, and again to a boy and a girl by the middle of the 80s. Responding to the value change, the fertility rate which is a crucial indicator of family size has drastically decreased to even below two children. To sum up, it is not difficult to conclude that present-day Korea has achieved a small family by casting off the son-preference idea.

Family structure, rules 

In attention to korean society in past it can be find very traditional, so we can consider that there are many differences within the family structure, and these differences in the role of individuals in playing their role in the family structure due to age and gender of individuals more or less intense. One of these differences occurs in housekeeping, which is ironically a very important and vital issue for any girl who is going to get married, because cooking and preparing some important foods that were used throughout the year was an important task. It is to the extent that the mother-in-law first tested the girl's cooking to seal the approval of the marriage. Another issue in housekeeping was that the mother-in-law had all the authority for herself and the bride and the other women were not allowed to interfere or comment on household matters and had to be completely obedient to the mother-in-law. Even the elders of the family could not put an end to this tyrannical behavior, and only with the death of the mother-in-law, the bride could have an opinion on the affairs of the house. However, modernity has changed this pattern and made even small differences. Of course, regarding the family structure in housekeeping, it should be noted that rural men were more involved in household chores due to more difficult conditions and manual labor, while urban men were more involved in working in government institutions and offices. Having enough time to join the family to participate in household chores has been a bit difficult. Due to the employment of men and women in urban areas, there has been a need for someone to do the housework for them. In the past, this was the responsibility of slaves, and now it is the responsibility of daily or annual servants, but there is a difference. There is, and that is, the percentage of servants has been very low since time immemorial.

Leaving aside homework, we come to the duties of parents towards their children. Parents have had responsibilities such as academic guidance, out-of-pocket money, home education, and so on. In the Republic of Korea today, due to the introduction of modernity in the country, each parent has his own role, but in the past it was the father who played over 70% of the educational role and the mother in the role of comforter. Traditionally, in the past, it was the boys who were allowed to study and the girls who were not allowed to study, were only allowed to learn housekeeping techniques and delicate female works.

Nowadays, in Korea, fathers have lost their maximum role and have a much smaller role than in the past, to the extent that fathers are providing more for themselves and even have very little contact with family members. The reason is that Korean fathers work hard to build a better life for their families.

Leaving aside the duties of a father, and let check the duties outside the home, which has been a symbol of the important duties of fathers. The fathers (men) covered all external activities and the wife or any other woman was not allowed to interfere or comment even after the death of the husband of the first son who continued the path of the father. Samjong's principle about women was highly praised and became one of the most important principles that introduced the man as the main leader of the family. But with the advent of modernity, the mechanism of society changed, now girls and women were allowed to cooperate in external and internal activities of the family, and their job status had also improved, but the relationship between the two sexes is still a bit abnormal and not constructive. In rural areas, work can also be seen being divided by gender.

Iman Ghasemi
25 Feb 2022
Views 40

Topic : Similarity between first full moon in korea and new year's bonfire night in Iran

Writers : Iman Ghasemi Deligani, Zahra Rezvani, Ghazaleh Bagheri

Brief explanation: our article is about two customs that really similar together in different parts and in soul!


Daeboreum 대보름

Bridge Crossing 다리밟기

Daljip taeugi _달집태우기 

Game Jwibul-nori (Fire Rat)

Sell Your Heat (Deowi-palgi_더위팔기)

Iran new year's Bonfire night

Belief in the derivation of the bonfire night from the Sadeh festival  

Costumes that happen in bonfire night 

Similarities between first full moon and bonfire night 

Jeongwol Daeboreum 정월대보름 

Daeboreum(대보름); is the fifteenth day of the first lunar month.  For Koreans, the moon symbolizes femininity and affluence. In the past, when the lunar calendar was used more widely, every fifteen days with a full moon was meaningful.  Of these "fifteenth" days, the fifteenth day of the first month after the new year begins has been seen as an important holiday no less important than soalnal(설날) itself, and everyone gives throughout the day various foods and customs. 

The celebration of the daeboreum(대보름) festival is commemorated as gratitude to the creator for having been given a good harvest and also given a long life.  The activities carried out during the cultural festival of Daeboreum(대보름) have a lot of meaning. 

In the past at the night of Daeboreum(대보름), especially women and children will light torches and head to the top of a hill or other high place to await the appearance of the moon. It is said that the first person to see the moon rising above the horizon will be awarded more of their place in the coming year than any other.  the moon rises higher in the sky, everyone will invoke the moon for good health, good luck and other personal wishes in the coming year. 

On the morning of Daeboreum(대보름), a few hard nut shells are thrown into the yard. People believe that this habit of consuming so-called Bureom(부럼) makes their teeth stronger. For breakfast, they eat nine kinds of old herbs, so-called mug-eun namul(묵은 나물). They also eat rice made of 5 different grains, which symbolizes a pile of grains, which symbolizes the progress of their prosperity.    

In ancient times, people made ogokbap (오곡밥) rice with five grains, a meal they rarely enjoyed in those times and which included rice, millet, sorghum, red beans and beans. They were hoping for a good harvest and for their well-being over the year ahead. The rice is usually served with an assortment of fried seasoned vegetables, known as jinchae (진채) or mug-eun namul(묵은 나물), which were gathered and dried after the harvest. People believed that eating this food would help them suffer less from the heat in the summer.

Farmers also play their musical instruments, to offer prayers to the gods who protect the village, step on the spirit of the earth, and go from house-to-house begging for grain. A traveling troupe of entertainers enters the villager's house, they are given rice or money, the people hope to be spared from disaster or disease.

The other hand, people protect their health by breaking and eating bureom (부럼), special seasonal beans, and drinking a cup of cold wine in the daeboreum (정월 대보름) morning.  People believe that they can boil any time if they want to eat bureom (부럼).  Cold wine is called kibalkisul (귀밝이술) , "The wine that quickens the ear, People in times past believed that if they drunk this alcohol, it would bring sharp and healthy ears and give the blessing of hearing a lot of good news all year around.

They also ate yaksik (약식) made by boiling glutinous rice with dates, chestnuts and ginkgo nuts, mixing them with honey and soy sauce. Meaning “food that is medicinal,” the dish can make up for any nutrients that they were lacking.

Apart from food seasonal, at daebroeum (정월 대보름) people have enjoyed many activities; from morning, walking back and forth on the bridge, burning the fields, etc. 

Besides Boreom (보름) there is also something called jwibultori.  Jwibullori refers to burning grass and weeds on the edge of dry field on the 14th day of the first lunar month. On that day, boys prepare firewood first.  They started with twos and threes to burn wood along the riverbank at night when the moon was rising in the sky.  

Bridge Crossing 다리밟기(Dari-bapgi)

On the way to welcome the moon, it is common to cross at least one bridge to get across the river, which causes the custom of dari-bapgi_다리밟기 (bridge crossing). It is believed that if you cross  12 bridges on the night of the Deaboreum (정월 대보름), you will be able to avoid misfortune for 12 months of the year Over the centuries, bridge crossings have become popular with young and old, men and women, as well as commoners and royalty.  

Daljip taeugi _달집태우기 

Burning of (Moon Shelter or house)

While waiting to "welcome the moon," youths will build a cone in the shape of a branch of green pine or bamboo with an opening facing East, the direction from which the moon rises.  A moon-shaped figure was hung inside and when the moon appeared, the moon shelter was set on fire.  Groups of peasant folk were often there to play live music and dance around the fire.

Koreans traditionally burned "daljip (달집)," or a pile of sheaves and wood chunks, to drive away bad luck and to wish good fortune.

 Game Jwibul-nori (Fire Rat)

 On these days, the edges of fields and paddy fields are burned to clear rats and pests in an effort to reduce crop losses. Similarly, children play related fire games such as burning the "moon shelter" and going around burning branches or torches in a circle. On the night the boys threaded wires into food cans with holes punched in them.  filled with smoldering coals of fiery embers. They then twirled these cans to produce large circles in the darkness. The boy who could determine the biggest fiery circle, round.  and most frankly he was the winner.  This tradition is still going on around Daeboreum (대보름).

Sell Your Heat (Deowi-palgi_더위팔기)

This entertainment practice takes place in the morning of Daeboreum(대보름).  People would walk around the area and call out names of friends and neighbors they would meet.  If they recognize the caller normally, the caller can say: "Sell your heat." In this way, the caller can "sell" or pass on to someone else the heat that callers usually have to endure in the summer.  On the other hand, if the person on call responds with "selling your heat," the caller must take the heat from this individual and then find someone else to pass it on today, the children may appear to be involved in this 

Iran new year's Bonfire night( چهارشنبه سوری)

A special celebration before the Iranian new year called Nowruz, the last Wednesday of the year that all Iranian all over the country celebrate it with some additional customs. There are many stories behind of this old cultural event and Some historians believe that this ancient and evolved festival is a celebration with an older history called the century (Sadeh, سده ); This festival is celebrated by 5 countries and several regions in the world and its original customs are still observed.

Belief in the derivation of the bonfire night from the Sadeh festival

Ibrahim Pourdawood believes that the celebration that is being held today is a modified form of the celebration of the Sadeh; Sedeh means dawn in Avesta and also means 50 nights and 50 days until spring equinox. One of the stories about this celebration is that when Fereydoun, with the help of Kaveh Ahangar, defeats the wicked Zahak and imprisons him on Damavand Mountain, he orders the people to set fire to the roofs of their houses and the Iranians liked the event and continued it.

In other words, it is said that the people gathered in the middle of Bahman and made a big fire, and rejoiced with joy and enthusiasm, as well as dialogue and consensus, so that this bitter cold of Bahman and Esfand would be safe. (According to the ancient Iranians, in February and March, the demonic forces gained a lot of power and they tried to confront them with prayer and celebration.)

The celebration of Sadeh lasted until the time of the Arab caliphs and the Khwarezmshahs, but was forgotten during the Mongol invasion and then its name was mentioned twice, one during the reign of king Mardavij in Isfahan and the other during the reign of king Amir Mahmud Ghaznavi.

Costoms that happen in bonfire night 

- Jumping over the fire

- Spoon-banging

- Smashing the pot

- Fortune telling (fal)

- Burning rue (Esfand)

- eating nuts 

Perhaps the most important part of this celebration is the tradition of jumping over the fire and reciting a poem that says, "My hardships and pains for you and your redness (the heat of the fire) for me."

This is the most attractive and popular part of bonfire night, along with gathering and spending the night with loved ones and eating different nuts and sweets and New Year fruits that bring happiness to our homes before the New Year; In fact, on this day, Iranians wish each other goodness, happiness and a happy future.

The tradition of spoon-feeding can be said to be the same as the ritual in which boys and girls go to neighbors' houses during Halloween and receive chocolates, nuts and snacks from them, with the difference that in the Iranian religion, they seek fortune and happiness. 

Breaking the Earthenware pots has many stories behind it, one of them was that the ancient Iranians thought that evils and iodine were concentrated in the pots and by breaking the pots, they would destroy the evils and in Another story that was common among Iranians in terms of medicine and health was that old and used pots were destroyed due to health issues to prevent possible illness and the spread of diseases, and this was cleaning action.

Similarities between first full moon and bonfire night 

Although bonfire night occurs before the Iranian New Year and Daeboreum occurs after the Lunar New Year, they both have one theme, and that is to wish happiness, health and good luck. The first cultural commonalities between the two festivals are the lighting of fire, which is seen in both festivals and is a testament to warmth and cheerfulness; Another common denominator is eating nuts and various foods, which is one of the enduring customs in two festivals.

In general, although there are different ceremonies in both that do not exist in the other, they have unique themes and similarities that show that the people of Asia have a similar thoughts that is celebrated every year with a celebration separate from the New Year and seek happiness and good fortune.


National Folk Museum of Korea

Korean Education Center in Washington D.C.(KECDC) Heritage Administration-,00030000,11&pageNo__=5_1_1_0&pageNo=1_1_2_0

Purdawood, Ibrahim (2007).  "Fireworks Wednesday".  Anahita: Purdavood's Iranian Studies Articles.  By the efforts of Morteza Gorji.  Tehran: Book World

Nafisi, Saeed (April 1313).  "Chaharshanbe Suri (Part 1)".

Iman Ghasemi
22 Oct 2021
Views 35

Topic : Iranian and Korean rites 

Writer : Iman Ghasemi 

Short Explanation: it's a brief comparison between Iranian and Korean rites and also similarities that could be found. 





Iranians are more sensitive compare to Koreans 

Korea kept the ancestors rites but it's fade in Iran

Iran has also Arabic culture and ancestors rites 

Gut (ritual), mysterious one

Similar to Gut but it is very different inside 

Charye, the one that exist in another way in Iran 




To compare Korean and Iranian rites together we can find some elements that are similar to each other but there are so many differences between the two cultures that are going to be  addressed.

Iranians are more sensitive compare to Koreans 

     Since it takes much time for a Persian to conceal their pain of losing a person, Persians usually have wide and long progress of funerals. As mentioned above, funerals are more important than rites.


    There are lots of grief  and sadness at the funeral and this progress is so long and there are many costumes in one month after losing a person. It means that Persians have day one, day two and seventh day and at last 1 month after the person's death that they mourn in those days for they lost and people who knows that man they came to the funeral to show their respect and Grief of losing that dear man or woman.

     In the funeral, The Iranian people mourn for that person, and in nights, after the lamentation, they serve dinner for mourners. Iran has annual lamentation just like Korea. The point is, however, that the length of grieving periods of the Iranian funerals are way longer than the mourning periods of the Korean rites.  

     In Iran's society, when a member of family dies, they don't usually work for seven days or even  two weeks but the Korean people have less than Iranian. This is why Persians are more sensible than Koreans.

Korea kept the ancestors rites but it's fade in Iran

     Annual ceremonies for ancestors in Korea are in various forms like kije, charye, sije but in Iran, they just got some annual rites for the people who was killed in war or soldiers who died while they defending from the borders.

     So Korean really respect their ancestors. These valuable ceremonies and activities provide younger generations in Korea with the chance to learn how to respect people who lived before us. 

Iran has also Arabic culture and ancestors rites 

    As mentioned above, Iranians these days don’t have special ceremonies. However, in the Islamic side of iran, they have Ashura Tasua that belongs to Arabic culture. Tasua and Ashura occur on the ninth and tenth days of Muharram, the first month of the Muslim year. The word 'Tasua' means ninth, and 'Ashura' means tenth in Arabic. 

     Tasua and Ashura commemorate the murder of Imam Husayn and certain members of his family in the year 680AD in Karbala. It has been so popular in Iran for 450 years among Iranians became Shia that many people every year also attend an event related to Ashura Tasua called Arbaʽeen.

     Arbaʽein, Chehellom is a Shiite religious observance that occurs forty days after the Day of Ashura. It commemorates the martyrdom of Al-Husayn ibn Ali, the grandson of Muhammad, who was martyred on the 10th day of the month of Muharram.

Gut (ritual), mysterious one 

     Gut is a shamanic ritual in Korea that is associated with spirits, music, and dance. The Korean shamans wear big and colourful clothes when they go into the trance to get help from God and wish one’s welfare. There are several types of Gut below:

1. Naerim-gut (내림굿)

2. Dodang-gut (도당굿)

3. Ssitgim-gut (씻김굿)

4. Jaesu-gut (재수굿)

5. Cheondoje'ui (천도제의)

Similar to Gut but it is very different inside 

     In Iran, there are some people who called Sufiy ( صُوفِيّ‎, ṣūfīy) contrary to Gut this one is individual and it's not for money or fortune. In other words, Sufism is a method of esoteric behavior. 

     In the definition of Sufism, different views are expressed; But its principles are based on the way in which knowing the Creator of the universe, discovering the truths of creation and the connection between man and truth is possible through mystical and esoteric path and not through rational reasoning. Its subject is the negation of self-centeredness and self-annihilation and joining the Creator of the universe. 

     Sufiy usually do Sama and it's like shaman do but they are different in the context mentioned above. a is a type of Sufi dance that involves rotating the body in a trance for spiritual purposes. Sama has an ancient historical background and after Islam, it has found supporters and opponents in this religion, or in other words, Sama is influenced by the movement of the group of lovers under the sounds of daf, reed, tambourine, and melodic poems.

Charye, the one that exist in another way in Iran 

     Charye is an ancestral rite that it involves peoples to prepare traditional foods to generations of ancestors at a family shrine. Like all jesa rituals, charye is customarily only performed by the eldest male heir of a family at the altar of the oldest living male. 

     The food is set on a table before an altar to the family’s ancestors. Each item on the table has a specific place determined by family, city, and tradition. The setting of the table is carefully cared for by the family. The specific food a family may serve during charye varies from one region to another. 

     But in Iran, there are many shrines but they are belonged to religious and important people. They are big and designed by gold everywhere and in special days they have some ceremonies and they give the poor people food, drink and maybe money or clothes; the people that buried in the shrines usually they are sacred or they are a big General or emperor.




1.    Hoseini-e Jalali, Mohammad-Reza (1382). Jehad al-Imam al-Sajjad (in Persian). Translated by Musa Danesh. Iran, Mashhad: Razavi, Printing & Publishing Institute. pp. 214–17.

2.    The Naqshbandi Sufi Tradition Guidebook of Daily Practices and Devotions, p. 83, Muhammad Hisham Kabbani, Shaykh Muhammad Hisham Kabbani, 2004

3.    Ghazzālī, and Claud Field. The Alchemy of Happiness. Armonk, N.Y.: M.E. Sharpe, 1991.

4.    The intellectual and political life of the Shiite Imams (as). (Rasoul Jafarian, 2008)

5.    Park, Chang-Won (10 June 2010). Cultural Blending in Korean Death Rites


7.    Lee, Jung Young (1981). Korean Shamanistic Rituals. Mouton De Gruyter.