Korean History

Color Footage of Seoul, 1938

According to the YouTube caption, this video was taken by Swedish diplomat Thor Wiestlandt in 1938. The caption also diagnoses Wiestlandt with “orientalism,” whatever the f**k that means … probably some hippie sociologist’s P.C. tag for what others might more sensibly explain as interest and curiosity in a foreign culture that your average 1938-model Swede wouldn’t have experienced. Enjoy:

And if you wonder why I moderate my comments, just have a gawk at the comments on any YouTube thread for conclusive proof that evolution is a two-way street.

5 Comments

  1. So, did Koreans really wear a distinctive national costume in 1938, or did the didplomat with orientalism ask them to dress up for a quaint film?




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  2. Korea looked really oriental back then, without western influence and modernism.
    This video is a precious piece of cultural history.
    The children looked adorable in their innocent playfulness.




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  3. Orientalism means the person making the comment has a college degree and heard some Westerner say something about Korea that Koreans say themselves but doesn’t count because they are Korean…

    Most likely a person who read Edward Said without putting thought into it…




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  4. PS – my gravatar is a picture of 30ish to 40ish Korean taking in 1951 by my step-grandfather and he was wearing the traditional casual white outfit —- (the Korean, not my grandfather – which would have made him an orientalist. As is, he was wearing a green US Army uniform – which just makes him an imperialist…)




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  5. He even got a snippet of ajushi taking a leak on the side of the building (at 1:25). It doesn’t get anymore authentic than that!




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