James B. Palais's Confucian Statecraft and Korean Institutions: Yu Hyongwon PDF

By James B. Palais

Seventeenth-century Korea was once a rustic in crisis―successive invasions by way of Hideyoshi and the Manchus had rocked the Chosòn dynasty (1392-1910), which already used to be weakened through maladministration, internecine bureaucratic factionalism, unfair taxation, focus of wealth, army difficulties, and different ills. Yu Hyòngwòn (1622–1673, pen identify, Pan’gye), a recluse student, spoke back to this time of chaos and uncertainty via writing his modestly titled Pan’gye surok (The Jottings of Pan’gye), a digital encyclopedia of Confucian statecraft, designed to aid his plan for a revived and reformed Korean process of government.

Although Yu was once neglected in his personal time by way of all yet a number of admirers and disciples, his principles turned famous by means of the mid-eighteenth century as discussions have been underway to unravel difficulties in taxation, army provider, and advertisement job. Yu has been considered through Korean and jap students as a forerunner of modernization, yet in Confucian Statecraft and Korean Institutions James B. Palais demanding situations this view, demonstrating that Yu was once as an alternative a very good instance of the premodern tradition.

Palais makes use of Yu Hyòngwòn’s titanic, pivotal textual content to envision the improvement and form of the foremost associations of Chosòn dynasty Korea. He has incorporated a radical therapy of the various chinese language classical and ancient texts that Yu used in addition to the to be had Korean fundamental resources and Korean and eastern secondary scholarship. Palais strains the background of every of Yu’s topics from the start of the dynasty and pursues advancements during the eighteenth and 19th centuries. He stresses either the classical and historic roots of Yu’s reform rules and analyzes the character and measure of proto-capitalistic adjustments, equivalent to using steel forex, the advent of salary hard work into the agrarian financial system, the advance of unregulated advertisement task, and the looks of industries with extra differentiation of labor.

Because it includes a lot comparative fabric, Confucian Statecraft and Korean Institutions can be of curiosity to students of China and Japan, in addition to to Korea experts. It additionally has a lot to assert to students of agrarian society, slavery, landholding platforms, paperwork, and constructing economies.

Winner of the toilet Whitney corridor ebook Prize, backed via the organization for Asian reviews

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In Cholla Province, the towns of Chonju and Namwon, known for papermaking, only had twenty-three paperworkers each. Even the largest towns like Kyongju, Sangju, Andong, and Chinju only had one or two blacksmiths or metallurgists. The yamen of provincial governors and military commanders had the most artisans, about a dozen each. 6 Most local industry at the beginning of the dynasty was in textiles - hemp, ramie, and cotton. 7 Cotton textile production began in the mid-I 290S in China, and cotton seeds were first brought to Korea around 1364, but cotton cloth did not become a major source of clothing until the 1460s.

44 This act did not mean either that the king confiscated the privately owned lands or estates of the yangban elite, or abolished the system of prebendal grants altogether, only that the taxes granted from prebends to individuals was transferred to the central government or its district magistrates and the land so affected was immediately con- 42 EARLY CHOSON DYNASTY verted into ordinary taxable land. The taxpayer, who was the legal owner of his land, referred to most frequently as "people's land" (minjon), was now liberated from the claims of the holders of sajon prebends.

He argued that three of the nonyangban men who passed the examinations were private slaves of important members of royalty and high officials who had support from their masters, that the seven commoners he mentioned might have included some declasse yangban, that the cases were too small in number to prove a trend, and that some of them dated from the mid rather than early Choson period. That they were cited at all in the Veritable Records (Sillak) probably indicated that they were exceptions to the rule.

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