2023 KORE Conference: Korean Capitalism and Marxism

2023 KORE Conference: Korean Capitalism and Marxism

January 28, 2023

Event Description: 

The conference aims to offer Marxist perspectives on studying Korean capitalism, while exploring its contribution to the debates on Marxist theories. Leading Marxist scholars in Korea will comprehend the characteristics of Korean capitalism in terms of its industrial and financial forms, the commodification of labour power, social formation, state politics, and the debate on periodization among others. Each of their research illuminates why the Marxist perspectives are vital to understanding thorny and enduring debates on Korean society and history and in what ways these studies of Korean capitalism contribute decisively to advancing Marxist theories. Taking a new approach to Korean studies, this conference matches presenters with discussants who conduct research on places outside Korea but share theoretical interests to facilitate discussions across area studies and disciplines.


Saturday Evening, January 28 at 6:00 PM – 10:40 PM EST

(Sunday Morning, January 29 at 8:00 AM – 12:40 PM KST)

Opening Remarks: 6:00 PM – 6:10 PM EST

Hyun Ok Park (Sociology, York University)

Dongjin Seo (Intermedia Art, Kaywon University of Art and Design)


Session 1: Neoliberal Capitalism, Death, and the State: 6:10 PM – 8:20 PM EST

Moderator: Laam Hae (Politics, York University)

6:10 PM – 7:10 PM EST

Nae-hui Kang (English, Chung-Ang University)

“Vertical Urbanization in Seoul since the 2000s as a Neoliberal Production of Space”

Discussant: Kanishka Goonewardena (Geography & Planning, University of Toronto)

7:20 PM – 8:20 PM EST

Dae-oup Chang (Global Korean Studies, Sogang University)

The Sinking of the M. V. Sewol and the Rise of Authoritarian Neoliberalism in South Korea”

Discussant: Greg Albo (Politics, York University)


Session 2: Finance Capital, Assets, and Bodies: 8:30 PM – 10:40 PM EST

Moderator: Gavin Smith (Anthropology, University of Toronto)

8:30 PM – 9:30 PM EST

Joohee Kim (Duksung Women’s University)

“Financialization and the Fluidized Women's Bodies”

Discussant: Hae Yeon Choo (Sociology, University of Toronto)

9:40 PM – 10:40 PM EST

Seung Cheol Lee (Anthropology, Seoul National University)

“‘Assetize Everything!’: Microassets, Tokenization, and the New Asset Logics”

Discussant: John Simoulidis (Social Science, York University)


Sunday, January 29 at 7:30 AM – 10:40 AM EST

(Sunday, January 29 at 9:30 PM – Monday, January 30 at 12:40 AM KST)

Session 3: Marxism and the Social: 7:30 AM – 9:40 AM EST

Moderator: Carlota McAllister (Anthropology, York University)

7:30 AM – 8:30 AM EST

Seung-Wook Baek (Sociology, Chung-Ang University)

“The Absence of Liberal Thought and the Predicament of Marxism in Korea”

Discussant: Ken Kawashima (East Asian Studies, University of Toronto)

8:40 AM – 9:40 AM EST

Dongjin Seo (Intermedia, Kaywon University of Art and Design)

“So-Called the Primitive Accumulation, Or So-Called the National Question: Theorizing (De)Colonial Capitalist Development in South Korea”

Discussant: Asad Haider (Politics, York University)


Discussion: 9:50 AM – 10:40 AM EST

Chair: Hyun Ok Park and Dongjin Seo

9:50 AM – 10: 20 AM EST

Jinkyung Yi (Sociology, Seoul National University of Science and Technology)

“Social Movement in the Age of Post-Labour: From Organization to Plantization”

10:20 AM – 10: 40 AM EST

David Fasenfest (Editor of Critical Sociology; Sociology, Wayne State University)

This virtual conference is organized Hyun Ok Park (Sociology, York University) and Dongjin Seo (Intermedia Art, Kaywon University of Art and Design).

This virtual event is presented by the Korean Office for Research and Education (KORE) at York University, which is funded by the Academy of Korean Studies (AKS).


For more information: kore@yorku.ca || https://kore.info.yorku.ca/