May 10-14, 2021 | Remote Online Conference
Please note: This session will be held virtually EST through Zoom. This webinar is free and open to the public, but registration is required. Once you've registered the joining information will be sent to your email.
Register at: https://myumi.ch/R5l2l
The 8th International Conference of NextGen Korean Studies Scholars (NEKST) which will be held virtually across five days from May 10-14. At the NEKST conference, graduate students in Korean studies will have the opportunity to share their research, receive feedback from Korean studies faculty members and other graduate students, as well as contribute toward building a dynamic, multidisciplinary community of future Korean studies scholars.
The five-day conference will feature panel presentations, workshop sessions for dissertation chapters/advanced papers, a roundtable discussion session, a professional development workshop, and an artist talk. We will host prominent Korean studies faculty members from across disciplines and institutions to serve as discussants, as well as mentors.
The 8th NEKST conference is sponsored by the Nam Center for Korean Studies at the University of Michigan with support from the Academy of Korean Studies. The conference organizing committee is composed of graduate students at the University of Michigan.
NEKST Organizing Committee
Youngkyun Choi (Committee Chair; Romance Languages and Literatures)
Yeon-ju Bae (Anthropology)
Cristian Casanova (Public Policy)
Haely Chang (History of Art)
Jieun Chang (Psychology)
Rey Jeong (Stamps School of Art & Design)
Hojung Joo (Political Science)
Sunhong Kim (School of Music, Theatre, and Dance)
Wooseok Kim (Political Science, Statistics)
Hayeon Lee (Anthropology, Social Work)
Samuel Byung-Deuk Lee (Biomechanics)
Won Park (CSE, Computer Science)
Seulgi Son (Urban and Regional Planning)
Cameron White (Asian Languages and Cultures)
Tony Zhang (Electrical and Computer Engineering)
Nojin Kwak (Nam Center, Communication and Media)
Rory Walsh (Nam Center)
Kelsey Langton (Nam Center)
Evan Vowell (Nam Center)
For further information, please contact NEKST2021@umich.edu and check for updates on this page.
Previous NEKST Conferences
Information about previous NEKST conferences can be found through this link.
In the era of globalization, Korea appears to encounter unprecedented challenges in dealing with new forms of difference from migration (e.g., Yemen refugees) to feminist reboot (e.g., #MeToo) to COVID-19. In what ways are Koreans participating in the global world beyond the national border, and in what ways is the Korean society going through fission and fusion? On the other hand, while the recent period is characterized by increased mobility and enhanced diversity, the encounter of difference is never a new social phenomenon. What kind of social, political, and cultural differences and clashes have constituted social dynamics of Korea(s) and Koreans throughout history? In what ways will our attention to encounters and interactions of difference shed new light on the field of Korean Studies? We invite submissions from all disciplines whose work is concerned with Korea (broadly defined) and engage with encountering difference.
Possible topics for the conference may include, but are not limited to:
- Crossing/Creating boundaries and borders
- Ethnic diversity and multiculturalism
- Korean diaspora and cosmopolitanism
- Racism and BIPOC: Antagonism and solidarity
- International politics and Korea
- The North and the South: Korea and the Globe
- Intersectionality and social inequalities
- Social movements and activism
- Gender, feminism, and queer theory
- Religion and politics
- Art, media and difference
- Big data and online space
- Anthropocene and ecological crisis
- Entanglement of materials and technology
- Encountering COVID-19
We welcome submissions from all disciplines as long as the research topic is related to Korea. Current graduate students (MA/PhD) as well as those holding a terminal master’s degree are eligible to apply.
Applicants can choose to participate in one of three formats between Panel presentation, Chapter/Article workshop, and Artist Talk. Roundtable discussion and other professional workshops are optional. To apply, please submit an abstract (250 words) by following the link below. The deadline for submission is February 1, 2021. You should expect to receive the results of your application by March 1, 2021.
1. Panel presentation
The panel presentation format is open to all graduate students. Graduate students who are accepted for this format will be arranged into panels to give a fifteen minute presentation. Participants will receive comments about their paper from an assigned faculty discussant. Abstracts should clearly state the research question, main argument, methodology, results, and conclusions. If accepted, completed papers will be due by April 23, 2021.
2. Chapter/Article workshop
The chapter/article workshop format is open to PhD students who have achieved candidacy. Manuscripts submitted for this format should be a dissertation chapter or a polished pre-submission journal article, no more than 10,000 words. Each forty minute workshop will be dedicated to the discussion of a single manuscript, and an assigned faculty mentor will provide detailed feedback on that manuscript. Manuscripts will be pre-circulated to all faculty and graduate participants of the conference, who will also be invited to provide comments. Please make sure that your abstract focuses on the chapter rather than the entire dissertation. If accepted, completed manuscripts will be due on April 9, 2021.
3. Artist Talk
The Artist Talk is open to all graduate students who are currently pursuing an artistic degree such as MFA, Mdes and DMA/MM. Selected artists will present their artworks (visual arts, film, music, performance or multidisciplinary arts) up to ten minutes. There will be a Q&A session following all presentations. To apply, please submit 1) an abstract (250 words) including a critical introduction of your art project (e.g., artist statement and work statement) and 2) a sample or excerpt of your artwork up to ten slides or one minute. If accepted, please submit your full artwork by April 9, 2021.
4. Roundtable discussion (optional)
The roundtable discussion, titled “Korean Studies at Large: Korean Studies in Korea, the Americas, and beyond,” is open to all participants. Four conference participants will be invited to briefly share their opinions on the current status of Korean studies at the beginning of the roundtable, and the remainder of the roundtable will be devoted to an in-depth discussion on the topic. Please indicate your willingness to be one of the four speakers when submitting your abstract.
All presentations and discussions will be conducted in English. For further information, please contact NEKST2021@umich.edu.
All times listed below are in the Eastern Time Zone (Ann Arbor, Michigan).
Monday, May 10
6:00-6:15pm Welcome Remarks
Nojin Kwak (Director, Nam Center for Korean Studies)
Youngkyun Choi (Chair, NEKST Organizing Committee)
6:15-7:30pm Panel 1: The Korean Diaspora and Imagining "Home" through Arts
Jinaeng Choi (UCLA) Rethinking Migrant Narratives: Hyphenated writers and Los Andes Munhak
Sunhong Kim (University of Michigan) Musical Diversity in Isang Yun's Piece, Piri für Oboe Solo, Focusing on Korean Musical and Western Musical Perspectives
Hannah Park (University of Chicago) ‘Home’ and ‘Hope’ for a Family in Exile: Practicing Everyday Life Through Jesse’s Diary
Moderator: Youngkyun Choi (University of Michigan)
Discussants: Susan Hwang (Indiana University) and Janet Poole (University of Toronto)
7:45-8:30pm Chapter Workshop 1
Yeon-ju Bae (University of Michigan) The Politics of Ethics: Differentiation, Accommodation, and Ambivalence in a Korean Buddhist Return-to-the-Farm Village
Moderator: Jieun Chang (University of Michigan)
Faculty Mentor: Albert L. Park (Claremont McKenna College)
8:30-9:30pm Networking Hour
Tuesday, May 11
6:00-7:15pm Panel 2: Representation, Misfits, and Resistance under Post-War Authoritarian Rule
Ga Eun Cho (Johns Hopkins University) Not Korean Enough: Systemization of Transnational Adoption During Park Chung-hee’s Regime
Amy Kahng (Stony Brook University) Beyond “Global Feminism”: Situating Lee Bul’s Artistic Practice from the 1990s
Max Balhorn (Chung-ang University) The Globalizing Politics of Pollution in South Korea’s First Zombie Flick: An Analysis of A Monstrous Corpse (1980)
Moderator: Wooseok Kim (University of Michigan)
Discussants: Eleana Kim (UC Irvine) and Albert L. Park (Claremont McKenna College)
7:30-8:15pm Chapter Workshop 2
Ji Eun Camille Sung (University of British Columbia) The Fictive, the Humorous, and the Action: The 4th Gang's Anti-establishment Practice in 1970 in South Korea
Moderator: Won Park (University of Michigan)
Faculty Mentor: Janet Poole (University of Toronto)
8:30-9:30pm Professional Development
Hilary V. Finchum-Sung, Ph.D. (Executive Director, Association for Asian Studies)
Wednesday, May 12
6:00-7:15pm Panel 3: Reboot, Struggles, and Paradoxes in Gender Politics
Janice Tapia (Central University of Chile) Feminism Reboot in South Korea: Radical Perspective and Its Activists
Adam Miller (UC Irvine) Failure as Existence in Queer South Korean Literature
Yue Quan (University of Chicago) Universal Skin Salvation: An Investigation into K-beauty’s Rise in the US
Moderator: Hayeon Lee (University of Michigan)
Discussants: Karen Tongson (USC) and Yoon Sun Yang (Boston University)
7:30-8:15pm Chapter Workshop 3
Joohyun Park (UC Berkeley) The Perpetual and Indelible: Injury of Sexual Violence Victims and Sentencing in South Korean Court Decisions
Moderator: Hojung Joo (University of Michigan)
Faculty Mentor: Youngju Ryu (University of Michigan)
Thursday, May 13
6:00-7:15pm Panel 4: (Re)Making Social Relationships in the Visual and Virtual
Jueun Lee (Seoul National University) The Personal Color Makeover: an Alternative Means for the Production of a Better Self
Yoonjung Kim (Seoul National University) "I am Just an Online Caretaker" - An Ethnography of Virtual Animal Lovers in South Korea
Yoonbin Cho (University of Pennsylvania) The Text of Transnational Remakes as an Impetus for Global Encounters: A Case Study of Intimate Strangers, the Korean Remake of the Italian Original Perfetti Sconosciuti
Moderator: Cameron White (University of Michigan)
Discussants: Juhn Ahn (University of Michigan) and Li Zhang (UC Davis)
7:30-8:15pm Chapter Workshop 4
Seungjoo Lee (University of Kansas) On the Threshold: Coming of Age in the Peripheries of a New Republic in La ciénaga, Attenberg, and Take Care of My Cat
Moderator: Rory Walsh (University of Michigan)
Faculty Mentor: Ungsan Kim (University of Michigan)
8:30-9:30pm Artist Talk
Rey Jeong (University of Michigan) Screaming Yellow and Mining Gold
Moderator: Cristian Casanova (University of Michigan)
Faculty Mentor: Joshua Pilzer (University of Toronto)
Friday, May 14
6:00-7:15pm Panel 5: Representations, and Realities Across North Korean Lives
Alexandra Leonzini (University of Cambridge) Spreading the Seeds of Revolution: Public Diplomacy, Transculturalism, and North Korean Revolutionary Opera
Haley Gordon (Stanford University) Nation-Being in North Korea: New Perspectives on Human Rights
Sojung Kim (Johns Hopkins University) COVID-19 and Domestic Life of North Korean Migrant Women in South Korea
Moderator: Cristian Casanova (University of Michigan)
Discussants: Ji Young Kim (Queens College, City University of New York) and June Hee Kwon (Sacramento State)
7:30-8:15pm Chapter Workshop 5
Jeongsu Shin (University of Illinois, UC) Ecologies of Differences: Sensing, Noticing, and Unpacking the Multispecies
Moderator: Yeon-ju Bae (University of Michigan)
Faculty Mentor: Se-Mi Oh (University of Michigan)
8:30-9:30pm Networking Hour