12 Pages


The June Tenth Movement
WithMichael D. Shin

The gap between Yi Gwangsu's political and cultural activities has been the cause for much scholarly attention. Some have seen it as the basis of his future collaboration with the Japanese; others, such as Seo Jungseok, viewed this gap as already indicating an abandonment of the nationalist movement. For minjung historians, it is evidence for their argument that the Culture Movement served the interests of the bourgeois class. Though Christian churches do not seem to have played much of a role, the Cheondogyo religion was involved once again as its local groups helped with preparations for the movement in the provinces. The March First Movement marked the transformation of nationalism from a project of elite intellectuals into a social movement with the rise of the masses as a political force. Yi Gwangsu himself criticized early nationalist movements for their lack of a social base.