How has Japanese culture influenced Korea?

Department of History and Cultural Studies

Japanese politics in Korea changed on the surface in the early 1920s, but remained essentially geared towards assimilating the Koreans. In particular, the intellectual youth organizations represented the policy of the Japanese government. Educational propaganda and information should convey the positive aspects of new Japanese life. Japan was able to win over important Korean intellectuals who saw the future of the country in Japanese modernization and civilization. In connection with these Japanese assimilation projects, a Japanese-Korean working group began researching Korean history in 1922 and in 1937 published the "History of Korea".

There has also been a milder climate in the area of ​​economic policy since the company law was changed in 1920. A permit from the government was no longer required to set up a company; a formal registration was now sufficient for both Japanese and Koreans. This led to a large increase in investment in the Korean peninsula, with mainly Japanese investors benefiting from the cheap labor in Korea. In 1930, the Japanese share of the capital in Korea was 62.4%, the Korean 6.4% and the jointly owned 30.8%.

Despite everything, a Korean industrial structure was able to develop in the 1920s, which had emerged in the shadow of Japanese colonial interests. The economic development, however, had one major disadvantage: the export of rice to Japan increased enormously. Although new irrigation systems were built and the land available for agriculture was expanded, the price of rice in Korea reached unprecedented highs, so that the Korean population suffered severely. While the scarcity of rice, the staple food, was alleviated in Japan by imports from Korea, many impoverished Korean farmers emigrated to the Chinese Manchuria.

In November 1919, six months after the end of the March 1st Movement, a Korean government-in-exile was founded in Shanghai, which initially wanted to unite the scattered Korean resistance groups under one roof. However, until the mid-1920s the government-in-exile did not find any unity, as there were too great differences of opinion between the various ideological groups, such as Christian conservative, nationalist and communist. However, she saw her task in making the situation in Korea known to the world through diplomatic channels and providing organizational support for the liberation struggles.