The 11th Perspectives on Contemporary Korea, Reclaiming the City, took place on November 12-13, 2021. This event was co-organized by Se-Mi Oh, Assistant Professor of Modern Korean History at Asian Languages and Cultures, University of Michigan, and Francisco Sanin, Professor of Architecture at Syracuse University, and was hosted by the Nam Center for Korean Studies and co-sponsored by the Taubman School of Architecture.
The conference asked fundamental questions about the right to the city, which was heightened during the pandemic, and explored various modes of practices with the focus on social and spatial justice. It provided a space for multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary dialogue by bringing together artists, curators, architects, activists, collectives, and communities as well as multi-generations of scholars in disciplines and fields such as anthropology, architectural history, architecture, art, art history, film, gender studies, geography, history, literature, sociology, theater and performance studies, and urban planning. It highlighted how creative and critical endeavors merge to make a new political and conceptual space, also interconnected with the visual, the imaginary, and the digital.
The conference utilized different formats of presentation both online and offline, including mini-podcast series, film screening, panel discussion, roundtable, artist talk, and performative gathering. This was also the first hybrid conference that the Nam Center hosted. On the webinar, 237 individuals registered for the conference with participants joining from 16 different countries including: US, Korea, Australia, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, New Zealand, Romania, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, UK, and Vietnam.