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Evangelization of the World in this Generation: Korean Students and the American Foreign Mission Movement, 1919-1945

Anne Soon Choi, Luce Post Doctoral Fellow, UCLA/Luce Colloquium Series

Tuesday, April 15, 2008
12:00 PM - 1:30 PM
11377 Bunche Hall
Los Angeles, CA 90095

The history of the American foreign mission movement in Korea has been closely tied to the anticolonial efforts of Korean nationalists during the period of Japanese colonial rule. It is well known that the March First Movement of 1919 was a pivotal moment in the history of Korean nationalism and that the movement brought about nationwide demonstrations largely owning to the influence of and indigenization of Wilson's Fourteen Points and Protestant Christianity to the context of Korea. What is not as well known is that even though the movement failed to bring independence to Korea, the two ideological dynamics that drove it— American Protestant Christianity and Wilsonian democracy---profoundly shaped the nationalist aspirations of Koreans studying overseas, which would proved to be critical since many of those students studying in the United States would go on to emerge as political and religious leaders in post-liberation Korea. In an effort to illuminate the transnational dynamics of Korean nationalism and American Protestant Christianity, this talk explores how Korean students negotiated understandings of  Protestant Christianity particularly its evangelical dynamics and American democracy in the context of  their involvement in the foreign mission movement and how these forces shaped their articulations of nationalism.

Anne Soon Choi earned her Ph.D. in history from the University of Southern California in 2004. She spent two years as an assistant professor in the American Studies Department at the University of Kansas and she is currently the Henry Luce Postdoctoral Fellow in Korean Christianity. Her talk is from her forthcoming book manuscript "For the Sake of the Nation:" Protestant Christianity and the Korean Independence Movement in the United States, 1919-1945"


Open to the Public

Cost : Free


Sponsor(s): Center for Korean Studies

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