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Hyun Ok Park

Department of Sociology

Associate Professor
 
Office: Vari Hall, 2096
Phone: (416) 736-2100 Ext: 77986
Emailhopark@yorku.ca
 
  • Overview
  • Publications
  • Teaching
  • Full Profile

My work as a sociologist encompasses interdisciplinary engagement with the philosophy of history, the crisis of capitalism, and the epistemological issues associated with comparative studies. My archival and ethnographic research concerns Korean transnational labor migration to and from northeast China, a border area known as Manchuria and the Balkans of Asia, at two historical moments--the first half of the twenty century and the current post-cold war period. I compare political cultures and social practices of community, sovereignty, and rights in the contexts of the nation-state system, the advent of global capitalism, and geopolitics. My research compares different periods not as discrete moments but as interdependent units formed through historical memories and the concept of history. Asia and diaspora as the site of my work leads me to explore the comparability of modernity of places, center and margin, and west and rest. My forthcoming book, "The Capitalist Unconscious: From Korean Unification to Transnational Korea" (Columbia University Press, 2015) brings the variant nexus of national, human, ethnic, and labor rights into dialogue with the politics of neoliberal democracy and history. It explores the historical change of sovereignty not as axiomatic postmodernity but rather as a product of the politics of crisis and history. My earlier work includes "Two Dreams in One Bed: Empire, Social Life, and the Origins of the North Korean Revolution in Manchuria" (Duke University Press, 2005). Before joining the department in 2007, I had taught at the University of Michigan as a visiting assistant professor and at New York University as an assistant professor. My research has been supported by the John. D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation fellowship, American Council of Learned Societies fellowship, Academy of Korean Studies grant, and the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton where I have been member and visitor.

   Area of Specialization

global capitalism, critical theory, historical sociology, nationalism and citizenship, post/colonialism, transnational and diasporic migration, Korea



Degrees

Ph.D., Department of Sociology, University of California at Berkeley

Professional Leadership

MEMBERSHIP OF EDITORIAL BOARD
2006 ‐ Present Journal of Northeast Asia History
2007 ‐ Present Korea Journal
2007 ‐ Present Economy and Society (Seoul, Korea)
1998 ‐ 2005 Economy and Society (Seoul, Korea)

MANUSCRIPT REVIEWS
1999 – 2011 - Book manuscript reviews for Duke University Press and Cornell University Press.
1997 2011 Article reviews for the journals, Contemporary Sociology, American Journal of Sociology, Comparative Studies in Society and History, Social Problems, Journal of International Migration, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, Political Studies, and Journal of Korean Studies.
Fellowship application review for the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

MEMBERSHIP IN PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATIONS
Canadian Sociological Association
American Sociological Association
Association for Asian Studies
Social Science History Association


Community Contributions

COMMUNITY SERVICE
2005 - 2008 Senior researcher, Korea Policy Institute, Washington D.C. ;
2002 – 2006 Lectures and consultations at the Korean Chinese Welfare Mission Center


Research Interests

Transnational migration,  market utopia and finance capital,  neoliberal democracy

All Publications

Books

The Capitalist Unconscious: From Korean Unification to Transnational Korea. New York: Columbia University Press, 2015.

Two Dreams in One Bed: Empire, Social Life, and the Origins of the North Korean Revolution in Manchuria. Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press,2005 xix, 314 pp.

Monographs

Problems of Comparability/Possibilities for Comparative Studies. Issue of Boundary 2: An International Journal of Literature and Culture, co-edited with Harry Harootunian. Volume 32, Number 2, Summer 2005. Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 258 pp

Book Chapters

"For the Rights of Colonial Returnees: Korean Chinese, Decolonization, Neoliberal Democracy in South Korea” in Jesook Song (ed.), Millennial South Korea: Neoliberalism, Routledge Press.

"The Politics of Korean Unification and Neoliberal Democracy,” in Sonia Ryang (ed.), North Korea: Towards a Better Understanding. Lexington Books/Rowman and Littlefield Press, 31 pp.

“Democracy as the Transcendence of History: Decolonization, Violence of the Past, and the Korean Chinese in South Korea,” in Dong-Hoon Seol and Jungmin Seo (eds.), The Korean Nation and Its “Others” in the Age of Globalization and Democratization. The Center for Korean Studies, University of Hawaii at Manoa.

“Desires for North Korea,” in Andrew Ross and Kristin Ross (eds.), Anti-Americanism, New York University Press, pp. 221-234.

“Enlightenment and Nationalism,” “Anti-Communism and Nationalism,” “Korean Nationalism,” “Park Chung Hee’s Nationalism,” “Kim Il Sung’s Nationalism.” Encyclopedia of Nationalism, edited by Alexander J. Motyl. San Diego: Harcourt Academic Press.

"Ideals of Liberation," in Elain Kim and Chungmoo Choi (eds.), Dangerous Women: Korean Nationalism and Women. New York, Routledge Press, pp.229-248.

Journal Articles

"Repetition, Comparability, and Indeterminable Nation: Korean Migrants in the 1920s and 1990s,” in Harry Harootunian and Hyun Ok Park (eds.), Problems of Comparability/Possibilities for Comparative Studies. Boundary 2: An International Journal of Literature and Culture 32 (2): 227-251.

"Anti-Americanism and Realignment in the Two Koreas.” Radical Philosophy 119 (May/June), pp. 2-5.

"Korean Manchuria: The Racial Politics of the Territorial Osmosis.” South Atlantic Quarterly, 99: 1 (Winter 2000), pp. 193-215.

Book Reviews

Namhee Lee, The Making of Minjung: Democracy and the Politics of Representation in South Korea (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2007). Contemporary Sociology.

Nancy Abelmann, Echoes of the Past, Epics of Dissent: A South Korean Social Movement (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1996). American Journal of Sociology. Volume 104 (1): 1092-1093.

Gi-Wook Shin, Peasant Protest and Social Change in Colonial Korea (Seattle: University of Washington Press. 1996). Contemporary Sociology 27 (4): 410-411.

Current Courses

TermCourse NumberSectionTitleType 
Fall 2014 AP/SOCI4360 6.0  Migration Experiences: Theory and Practice SEMR Course Website 

Upcoming Courses

TermCourse NumberSectionTitleType 
Winter 2015 AP/SOCI3430 6.0  Ethnicity, Power and Identity LECT Course Website 


My work as a sociologist encompasses interdisciplinary engagement with the philosophy of history, the crisis of capitalism, and the epistemological issues associated with comparative studies. My archival and ethnographic research concerns Korean transnational labor migration to and from northeast China, a border area known as Manchuria and the Balkans of Asia, at two historical moments--the first half of the twenty century and the current post-cold war period. I compare political cultures and social practices of community, sovereignty, and rights in the contexts of the nation-state system, the advent of global capitalism, and geopolitics. My research compares different periods not as discrete moments but as interdependent units formed through historical memories and the concept of history. Asia and diaspora as the site of my work leads me to explore the comparability of modernity of places, center and margin, and west and rest. My forthcoming book, "The Capitalist Unconscious: From Korean Unification to Transnational Korea" (Columbia University Press, 2015) brings the variant nexus of national, human, ethnic, and labor rights into dialogue with the politics of neoliberal democracy and history. It explores the historical change of sovereignty not as axiomatic postmodernity but rather as a product of the politics of crisis and history. My earlier work includes "Two Dreams in One Bed: Empire, Social Life, and the Origins of the North Korean Revolution in Manchuria" (Duke University Press, 2005). Before joining the department in 2007, I had taught at the University of Michigan as a visiting assistant professor and at New York University as an assistant professor. My research has been supported by the John. D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation fellowship, American Council of Learned Societies fellowship, Academy of Korean Studies grant, and the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton where I have been member and visitor.

Area of Specialization

global capitalism, critical theory, historical sociology, nationalism and citizenship, post/colonialism, transnational and diasporic migration, Korea


Degrees

Ph.D., Department of Sociology, University of California at Berkeley

Professional Leadership

MEMBERSHIP OF EDITORIAL BOARD
2006 ‐ Present Journal of Northeast Asia History
2007 ‐ Present Korea Journal
2007 ‐ Present Economy and Society (Seoul, Korea)
1998 ‐ 2005 Economy and Society (Seoul, Korea)

MANUSCRIPT REVIEWS
1999 – 2011 - Book manuscript reviews for Duke University Press and Cornell University Press.
1997 2011 Article reviews for the journals, Contemporary Sociology, American Journal of Sociology, Comparative Studies in Society and History, Social Problems, Journal of International Migration, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, Political Studies, and Journal of Korean Studies.
Fellowship application review for the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

MEMBERSHIP IN PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATIONS
Canadian Sociological Association
American Sociological Association
Association for Asian Studies
Social Science History Association


Community Contributions

COMMUNITY SERVICE
2005 - 2008 Senior researcher, Korea Policy Institute, Washington D.C. ;
2002 – 2006 Lectures and consultations at the Korean Chinese Welfare Mission Center


Research Interests:

Transnational migration,  market utopia and finance capital,  neoliberal democracy

All Publications

Books

The Capitalist Unconscious: From Korean Unification to Transnational Korea. New York: Columbia University Press, 2015.

Two Dreams in One Bed: Empire, Social Life, and the Origins of the North Korean Revolution in Manchuria. Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press,2005 xix, 314 pp.

Monographs

Problems of Comparability/Possibilities for Comparative Studies. Issue of Boundary 2: An International Journal of Literature and Culture, co-edited with Harry Harootunian. Volume 32, Number 2, Summer 2005. Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 258 pp

Book Chapters

"For the Rights of Colonial Returnees: Korean Chinese, Decolonization, Neoliberal Democracy in South Korea” in Jesook Song (ed.), Millennial South Korea: Neoliberalism, Routledge Press.

"The Politics of Korean Unification and Neoliberal Democracy,” in Sonia Ryang (ed.), North Korea: Towards a Better Understanding. Lexington Books/Rowman and Littlefield Press, 31 pp.

“Democracy as the Transcendence of History: Decolonization, Violence of the Past, and the Korean Chinese in South Korea,” in Dong-Hoon Seol and Jungmin Seo (eds.), The Korean Nation and Its “Others” in the Age of Globalization and Democratization. The Center for Korean Studies, University of Hawaii at Manoa.

“Desires for North Korea,” in Andrew Ross and Kristin Ross (eds.), Anti-Americanism, New York University Press, pp. 221-234.

“Enlightenment and Nationalism,” “Anti-Communism and Nationalism,” “Korean Nationalism,” “Park Chung Hee’s Nationalism,” “Kim Il Sung’s Nationalism.” Encyclopedia of Nationalism, edited by Alexander J. Motyl. San Diego: Harcourt Academic Press.

"Ideals of Liberation," in Elain Kim and Chungmoo Choi (eds.), Dangerous Women: Korean Nationalism and Women. New York, Routledge Press, pp.229-248.

Journal Articles

"Repetition, Comparability, and Indeterminable Nation: Korean Migrants in the 1920s and 1990s,” in Harry Harootunian and Hyun Ok Park (eds.), Problems of Comparability/Possibilities for Comparative Studies. Boundary 2: An International Journal of Literature and Culture 32 (2): 227-251.

"Anti-Americanism and Realignment in the Two Koreas.” Radical Philosophy 119 (May/June), pp. 2-5.

"Korean Manchuria: The Racial Politics of the Territorial Osmosis.” South Atlantic Quarterly, 99: 1 (Winter 2000), pp. 193-215.

Book Reviews

Namhee Lee, The Making of Minjung: Democracy and the Politics of Representation in South Korea (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2007). Contemporary Sociology.

Nancy Abelmann, Echoes of the Past, Epics of Dissent: A South Korean Social Movement (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1996). American Journal of Sociology. Volume 104 (1): 1092-1093.

Gi-Wook Shin, Peasant Protest and Social Change in Colonial Korea (Seattle: University of Washington Press. 1996). Contemporary Sociology 27 (4): 410-411.


Teaching:

Current Courses

TermCourse NumberSectionTitleType 
Fall 2014 AP/SOCI4360 6.0  Migration Experiences: Theory and Practice SEMR Course Website 

Upcoming Courses

TermCourse NumberSectionTitleType 
Winter 2015 AP/SOCI3430 6.0  Ethnicity, Power and Identity LECT Course Website