The May 2017 session of the “Seoul Colloquium in Korean Studies,” organized jointly by the Seoul Center of the ÉFEO and RAS Korea, will be held on Thursday May 18 in the Grand Conference Room (Room number 310), of the Asiatic Research Institute, Korea University, beginning at 6:00 pm. Everyone interested in Korean Studies is welcome, please share this information. No registration is needed.
“Constructing National Food: North and South Korean Cookbooks and the Standardization of National Cuisine” by Benjamin Joinau
In the context of national constructs, recipe books define an ideal corpus of national cuisine. The need for standardized recipe books started in Korea during the 20th century, when Korea was facing rapid modernization in the Japanese colonial context. Partition later opened a new dilemma: if Korean culture is one, so should be Korean cuisine – but in the context of the long partition and of the Cold War regime of opposition, the two States tend to require increased differentiation. These competing identities are well expressed in the different recipe books which have been published on both sides on an official or semi-official level. This study will be based on the detailed statistical analysis of the North Korean “Bible” of its own cuisine: Chosŏn ryori chŏnchip (Encyclopedia of Chosŏn Cuisine, 1994-2014, Pyongyang). We will proceed to a categorization of the types of dishes, as well as methods of cooking and main ingredients used in recipes. In order to have a synchronic comparison, recent data from South Korea will be included in the comparative analysis. We will analyze Hanguk ŭmsik kich’o chori (Basic Cooking of South Korean Dishes, Yoon Sook-ja, 2008, Seoul), because the author had her book translated in several languages, insisting on the fact that the recognition of Korean gastronomy on the international stage relies on the standardization of recipes. Through these thorough analysis, we will be able to proceed to an in-depth comparison of the way North and South Korea construct their national cuisine through such recipe books.
Benjamin Joinau holds a doctorate in cultural anthropology specialized in Korean Studies. He is a researcher of the Center of Korean Studies (CRC) at EHESS, Paris, and assistant professor at Hongik University, Seoul. He has been living and working in South Korea since 1994. His Ph.D. thesis analyzed the regimes of otherness in Korean cinema. Beside cinema, he works on different materials like food culture and cityscape in both North and South Koreas. He anchors his methodological frame in Gilbert Durand’s « mythodology » in order to delineate the structures of the Korean modern imaginary. He has published several articles and books in French, English and Korean. He is also the director of the publishing house Atelier des Cahiers (www.atelierdescahiers.com).
From Korea University station (line 6), take exit 1, go to the right, up the sloping walkway to the campus. Walk past the building with the Ilmin Museum (the first building you'll see almost in front of you, a little to the left), and continue walking straight up the hill until you reach the Asiatic Research Institute on the right. We will go somewhere for supper at the end of the colloquium. After 6 pm the front door of the Institute will be locked, so please try to arrive a little earlier. If the door is locked, please either wait for somone to come out or phone to Brother Anthony (010-8979-8301) so that we can let you into the building.
[SEMU-YÉOL LECTURE] 2017 May
Food Heritage in Korea: How to Preserve and Develop Food Culture
Lecturer: Benjamin Joinau
Assistant professor, Hongik University
It is an evidence to say that food is both substance and symbol, providing physical nourishment and a key mode of communication that carries one's group culture. In a world of constant cultural contact and exchange, the change of diets seems to have accelerated, but the boundaries that separate cultures have not disappeared. Food is, in this context, more than ever maybe, essential to perform, express and maintain one's collective identity. Moreover, it has become a key factor in promoting one's culture as a soft power and it has also become a leading industry to foster. It is in such a context of both globalization and national branding focusing on local specificity, that the issue of food heritage in Korea came to exist. This lecture will present the different aspects of this quest for defining and preserving Korean food culture since the end of the 20th century: the role of cookbooks in writing a national cuisine, the rediscovery of royal court food culture, the long process of geographical indications recognition, the "kimchi war" and the registration of gimjang on the UNESCO intangible heritage list, the arrival of the Michelin guide... All these themes will help us to understand the different policies and strategies used to preserve and develop Korean food culture, both on institutional and private levels, locally and internationally.
Benjamin Joinau is a doctor in cultural anthropology specialized in Korean Studies. He is a researcher of the Center of Korean Studies (CRC) at EHESS, Paris, and assistant professor at Hongik University, Seoul. He has been living and working in South Korea since 1994. His Ph.D. thesis has analyzed the regimes of otherness in Korean cinema. Beside cinema, he works on different materials like food culture and cityscape in both North and South Koreas. He was the host of the Arirang's TV show: "Tasty Trail with Benjamin" about Korean food culture. He anchors his methodological frame in Gilbert Durand’s « mythodology » in order to delineate the structures of Korean modern imaginary. He has published several articles and books in French, English and Korea. He is also the director of the publishing house Atelier des Cahiers (www.atelierdescahiers.com). Personal Website : www.benjaminjoinau.com.
Education room (1st floor), Seoul Museum of History
55 Saemunan-ro, Jongno-gu, Seoul
Date and Time
May 15th, 2017 (Mon)
11:30 A.M. to 13:00 P.M
No Admission Fee.
Contact (Registration required)
Retrouvez sur notre chaîne Youtube la conférence "Hong Jong-u, aux sources de la francophonie coréenne" à l'Alliance française de Séoul, dans le cadre de la Semaine de la Francophonie, le 28 mars 2017. Cette conférence était organisée à l'occasion de la publication par l'Atelier du "Printemps parfumé suivi du Bois sec refleuri".
A Lot on Korea’s Plate: Food and Collective Identity in the Korean World
I organized a panel about food culture and collective identity in the Korean world at the last AAS conference in Toronto (March 16-19). The panel was chaired and discussed by Prof. Walraven (Sungkyunkwan University) and the panelists were:
Food and Social Categorization in Migrant Situation: The Case of the Korean Diaspora of Central Asia in South Korea
Eunsil Yim, EHESS
Constructing National Food: North and South Korean Cookbooks and the Standardization of National Cuisine
Benjamin Joinau, EHESS/Hongik University
The Significance of the Apple-Pear to Korean-Chinese Cultural Identity
Aihua Li, Leiden University
Sauerkraut-Kimchi-Jjigae: A Perfect German-Korean Match
Sun-ju Choi, University of Tuebingen
The French publishing company specialized in books about Korea and East Asia that I co-founded and co-lead with Yves Millet, is the winner of the 2016 Asia Literary Award (Prix littéraire de l'Asie). Usually, this prize is given to a single author, but exceptionnally it was decided to give it this year to a publisher. We are honoured and thrilled !
I presented a lecture on "Hong Jong-u (1850-1913) and the origins of Korean francophonie" at the Alliance française in Seoul Tuesday 28th March 2017. The lecture was organised during the Francophonie festival week and at the occasion of the publication by Atelier des Cahiers of two of the texts printed in France in 1892 and 1895, probably the first literary Korean texts ever published in a Western language: "Le Printemps parfumé, suivi du Bois sec refleuri". I edited that book, which include an introduction by Brother Anthony of Taizé (RASK President), and articles published at that time in France about Hong and his books.
Texts - Articles - Books - Presentations - Lectures - etc.