Issues defining contemporary Korea


The Korean section of the Department of Asian Studies at Palacky University Olomouc, Czech Republic, is organizing a lecture series (constituting one “carousel lecture”) for the spring/summer semester of 2019. We envision seven different experts presenting research-based teaching on issues defining contemporary Korea. The disciplines represented shall comprise humanities, cultural studies, cultural anthropology, political science, and social studies.

While the subject area is defined in a very broad way, we narrow down the scope in terms of teaching approach. The teachers are supposed to base their lectures on their own academic research. Introductory knowledge on Korea shall be imparted in a calculated en passant fashion, akin to how a good novel might teach the basics of a historical period’s conflicts just by the way — while the reader is engrossed in a story of love and revenge.

We hope for many interesting proposals by enthusiastic scholars and university teachers who feel attracted by the concept. Deadline for proposals is December 5. Proposals should contain: an abstract of 300 words, a CV, and a publication list. Send your proposal (all attachments in PDF format please) to

The chosen teachers are supposed to deliver, within four weeks after their lecture, an essay (3000 to 4000 words) summarizing main contents. All essays will be published online as an open-access resource on our homepage (for examples see

The lectures and essays shall form a centerpiece of a Seed Program for Korean Studies project, for which Palacky University Olomouc has received a grant from the Korean Studies Promotion Service (Academy of Korean Studies).


Practical matters

Time/Dates: The lectures take place at a fixed time (on Fridays from 9:45 to 13:00; actual teaching time, 180 minutes) every other week of the semester. Dates are: Feb 22, March 8, March 22, April 5, April 19, May 3, May 17.


  1. ) Travel costs: We can cover travel costs (flight or/and train) within our budget, 400 Euros on average. In order to guarantee a fair distribution of reimbursements, based on actual expenses, we will not evenly hand out 400 Euros. Rather, we will agree with the selected participants on (and commit to) paying a certain amount based on the foreseeable expenses. Upon your arrival, we will proceed with a transfer of this money to your account (bank fees are not covered).
  2. ) Accommodation: We will make reservations and cover costs, but for organizational reasons we have to ask our guests to cover these costs themselves initially. They will be reimbursed for this amount, together with the travel costs (see above).
  3. ) Honorarium: The honorarium is 500 Euro. This will be paidafterdelivery of the essay described above, as we rely on a tangible output for our grant donors.

Other details:

The carousel lecture will be fully independent but shall take place alternating with another bi-weekly lecture, held at the same time slot on non-carousel-lecture weeks, so that this specific time window will be filled every week. From an administrative point of view, every lecturer will actually hold two lecture units (90 minutes each, with a break in between), guaranteeing in total the equivalent of one regular lecture (a 90-minute lecture, taking place once a week). Students take an exam at the end. Exams and assessment are done by the project director. The carousel lecture does not require registration and will of course also be open (theoretically) to the general public, in compliance with university laws.


In their essays, the teachers are supposed to outline their main points in an accessible, reader-friendly way, while also offering some observations and maybe daring speculations as work in progress.