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IZO Events

We cordially invite all interested parties to the last hybrid Visiting Talk of the Korean Studies Guest Lecture Series of SoSe 2023 on 14 June 2023 (6 pm - 7.30 pm).

The lecture, titled "Covid Exceptionalism: Debunking Three Myths about South Korean 'Success' During the Covid-19 Pandemic", will take place at Campus Westend (PEG1.G135) as well as online via ZOOM (ZOOM registration link).

Dr. Choon Key Chekar, a Senior Research Associate at Lancaster Medical School, Lancaster University, explores South Korea's public healthpolicy related to COVID. COVID-19 has presented challenges across the globe that led to several shared lessons to be learned. Yet, we have been inundated with accounts that characterise national pandemic responses as inherent and unique to certain countries, which led to COVID-exceptionalism. This lecture challenges myths of South Korea's “successful" responses to the COVID-19 crisis. This lecture discusses what might have been the disadvantages of the cultural exceptionalism rhetoric in public health policy. COVID-exceptionalism may have not only reinforced existing “(East) Asian" and “Western" stereotypes, but also caused other problems such as implicitly granting political impunity to those responsible for coordinating COVID-19 responses.

For further information please contact: Prof. Yonson Ahn, Y.Ahn[at]

IZO Events

We would like to cordially invite you to a lecture by Prof. Michael Lounsbury (Alberta School of Business), one of the most renowned scholars in the field of Management & Entrepreneurship. The lecture, titled "Entrepreneurial Possibilities: Broadening the Scope of Research on Entrepreneurship and Markets" is organised by the IZO in cooperation with the CEDITRAA research project and will take place on 22 May 2023 at Campus Westend.

Professor Lounsbury will present ideas from his recent book with Mary Ann Glynn entitled "Cultural Entrepreneurship: A New Agenda for the Study of Entrepreneurial Processes and Possibilities" (Cambridge University Press, 2019). Cultural Entrepreneurship has been a rapidly growing scholarly conversation that has historically focused a great deal on how new entrepreneurial ventures gain legitimacy via storytelling. The book provides a critique of applied economic approaches to entrepreneurship, and argues for a more profoundly cultural approach that focalizes how field dynamics around future oriented stories constitute the identities of entrepreneurs and entrepreneurial possibilities, prefiguring the emergence of entrepreneurial dynamics. He will leverage the empirical case of nanotechnology to illustrate core arguments, but will also call for more diverse research from around the globe (e.g., Africa and Asia) in order to further flesh out the theory of cultural entrepreneurship.

IZO Events

We would like to cordially invite you to the upcoming "Korea and the Global Society" book talk, which is organised by the department of Koreastudien. 

The book talk will take place on 10 May 2023 (6 pm - 7.30 pm) at Campus Westend (PEG 1.135) as well as online via ZOOM 

(ZOOM Registration Link)

The anthology "Korea and the Global Society" (editor: Yonson Ahn) was published by Routledge in February 2023. It covers various fields and disciplines around the theme of South Korea's engagement and exchange with the global society, with a focus on development cooperation, migration and media. The volume focuses on an analysis of South Korea's engagement and reciprocity in the global society, which has evolved from the country's transformation from a recipient of aid and a sender of migrants to a provider of aid and a recipient of migrants

The following two chapters will be presented at this book talk:

"Ex-Periphery: South Korea's Position vis-à-vis the Global Society" (Irina Lyan, Hebrew University of Jerusalem)

"Negotiating Masculinity: Migrant Husbands and Cross-Border 'Marrying-Up'" (Seonok Lee, University of Groningen)

For further information please contact: Prof. Yonson Ahn,

IZO Events

We would like to cordially invite you to the lecture series "Richard Wilhelm Lecture" with Prof. Dr. Fan-sen Wang (Academia Sinica) entitled "The Birth of Modern China. Politics and History", which is organised by the Sinology Department, the China Institute and the Friends of the University

The lectures will take place on 24 April 2023 and on 26 April 2023 from 6 pm at Campus Westend and are open to all interested parties. Prior registration is not necessary. 

/24 April 2023, 18–20:00 c.t., CAS 1.811/

This lecture seeks to conceptualize a major shift in Chinese utopian   thought with the division of backward-looking and forward-looking utopias. In the wake of the 1898 Reform Movement, a new utopianism that envisioned the destruction of existing social bonds took shape in the /Datongshu/ by Kang Youwei (1858–1927). Inspired by the novel concept of evolution, Kang's utopianism was future-oriented, as he assumed that material and scientific progress could only be achieved by abolishing the Three Bond and Five Relations defined in the Confucian Classics. His idea was a radical break from the traditional Chinese utopian thoughts that were based on ideals to return to ancient morality, as exemplified by stories of “hungry country"—a novelistic utopia where people could withstand poverty and hunger but remain moral—that were popular in the Qing Dynasty. Over the course of just seventy or eighty years, the utopia of morality and poverty found in the hungry country stories gave way to the utopia outlined in the /Datongshu/. With a scientistic belief in human agency, the new utopian thinkers imagined that the social world could be broken down into factors and reassembled in their desired manners. Their future-oriented utopianism exerted enormous influence on modern Chinese reformists and revolutionaries, including Mao Zedong. My categorization not only captures the conceptual transformation from traditional to modern China, but also complements the existing analyses of utopian thoughts, including Zhang Hao's active and passive utopias, and Jay Winter's major and minor utopias.

/26 April 2023, 18–20:00 c.t., IG 1.314/


Amidst the major transition in views of historical evidence in the 1920s, a new model of archaeological research emerged along with the founding of Division of Archaeology at the Institute of History and Philology. Advocates of this new archaeology, represented by Li Chi and Fu Ssu-nien, contended that a modern and scientific approach to   research should be centred upon excavation as a process of comprehensive knowledge, rather than mere collection of ancient texts and artefacts. The new archaeologists were deeply discontent with traditional practices of palaeography and epigraphy, which, according to them, narrowly focused on texts connected to the Confucian classics, paid little attention to material condition of artefacts, and thus failed to achieve a holistic understanding of the past. They also distinguished their project from earlier attempts to reform research on ancient China with Western knowledge, such as Luo Zhenyu and Wang Guowei who employed a method of “twofold evidence" by comparing inscriptions on oracle bones and bronze artefacts with traditional written texts. The new vision of archaeological research was put into practice in the subsequent years after 1928, when the Institute of History and Philology launched the project to excavate the ancient Shang Dynasty capital (Yin Xu) in Anyang, Henan. For modern Chinese researchers, the Yin Xu excavation project defined what could be considered legitimate archaeological evidence, and therefore constituted the canon of modern Chinese archaeology. 

About the Speaker

/PROF. WANG FAN-SEN/ is a historian specializing in the cultural-intellectual history of early modern and modern China (circa 1500 to 1930). He has written broadly on Chinese intellectual history in the last few centuries. His most important works include /Chang T'ai-yen and His World/ (1985), /Fu Ssu-nien: A Life in Chinese History and Politics/ (2000), /The Genealogy of Modern Chinese Thought/ (2003), and /The Historian and the Historiography in Modern China/ (2008), among others. He received his PhD from Princeton University in 1992. He has taught at universities throughout Taiwan, including National Taiwan University and National Tsing Hua University. Prof. Wang has been Academician of Academia Sinica since 2004 and served as its Vice President and Acting President. He is currently serving as the Chancellor of Taiwan Comprehensive University System. Prof. Wang Fan-sen has been the recipient of many distinguished domestic and international awards. In 2005, he was elected as Fellow of the Royal Historical Society of the United Kingdom.

IZO Events

This workshop delves into an under-studied topic of the Korean youth in the South, focusing on the multiple trajectories and complexities of newer-generation Korean im/migrants in the Southern Hemisphere and the Global South. Unlike younger-generation Koreans in the Global North particularly in North America and Europe, who have tended to pursue professional careers and achieved mainstream-oriented mobility, young Korean im/migrants in the Global South have explored different options and followed multiple trajectories beyond the boundaries of their host societies. Hence, this workshop aims to understand how and to what extent these particular circumstances have shaped their lives and experiences of the Korean youth in the South. 

You can register for the Zoom link here.

IZO Events

A workshop with Prof. William Callahan, Professor of International Relations at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE), organised by the IZO Early Career Researcher Network, will take place on 27 January from 9 am to 12 pm. Prof. Callahan will be in Frankfurt the evening before (26 January, 6 pm) to give a lecture at the China Institute,
to which you are also cordially invited.

Under the title "How to understand China, and understand the world: mixed methods approaches", we will then have the opportunity to talk in more detail with one of the most renowned China experts in the field of international relations at the ECRN workshop on Friday morning. Designed specifically for ECRs, the workshop will be highly interactive, with plenty of opportunity to ask questions about research and academic career development. Coffee and snacks will be provided by the IZO during the three-hour event. Participation is only possible after prior registration via email to Please see the attached flyer for further details.

IZO Events

Korean Studies at Goethe University of Frankfurt cordially invites you to the online workshop "Korean and German Encounters and Interactions" on 20 January and 21 January 2023. 

You can register for the zoom link here

The following programme awaits you:

(Panel I) 20 January 2023, 10:15-12:15

Prof. Jin-Wook Shin & Boyeong Jeong (Chung-ang University)

Rival Narratives of Germany and Discursive Struggles in South Korean Public Spheres

Prof. Hannes Mosler (University of Duisburg-Essen)

South Korea's April Revolution Through the Lens of West Germany

Prof. Yvonne Schulz Zinda (University of Hamburg)

The Past, Present and Future of Korean Studies in Germany

(Panel II) 20 January 2023, 13:15-15:15

Prof. Jan Creutzenberg (Ewha Womans University)

Pansori in Germany: Korean Singing-Storytelling, from Invitation to Collaboration

Katharina Süberkrüb (University of Hamburg)

German Trends in Collecting Korean Material Culture Towards the End of the Chosŏn Dynasty

(Panel III) 21 January 2023, 10:00-12:00

Dr. Jihye Kim (University of Central Lancashire)

Hallyu (Korean Wave) and Korean Restaurant Businesses in Frankfurt

Prof. Yonson Ahn (Goethe University of Frankfurt)

Maternal Practices of Korean Healthcare Workers in Germany

Dr. Jaok Kwon-Hein (University of Heidelberg)

Becoming 'Good' Working Mothers: Mothering of Highly Skilled Female Migrants from Korea in Germany

IZO Events

Nov 23 2022

​IZO & Ceditraa guest lecture on 6 December 2022, 18.15, IG 1.314

Prof. Ann Heylen on Digitization of Scholarly Publishing in East Asian Popular Culture Research

On 6 December 2022, Ann Heylen, Professor at the Department of Taiwan Culture, Languages and Literature, National Taiwan Normal University (NTNU), and Executive Director of the International Taiwan Studies Center (ITSC), at the College of Liberal Arts, NTNU, will give a talk in Frankfurt upon joint invitation by the Ceditraa project and the Interdisciplinary Centre for East Asian Studies (IZO).

The talk offers a case study in which the bibliographic references of the articles published in East Asian Journal of Popular Culture (EAJPC) are subjected to an electronic text analysis. It forms part of generating a relational database. The methodology will illustrate traditional corpus linguistic (CL) tools and tendencies in the development of scholarly publishing and patterns in the digitization of culture research. The concept of the 'journal as corpus' is taken as the organizing principle in the selection and editing of networked materials and multimedia to inquire about the role of language acquisition and cultural knowledge transmission. The purpose is to apply this method to a larger corpus of bibliographic references of East Asian popular culture.

Prof. Heylen's talk is organised by Mirjam Tröster, whose Ceditraa research focuses on K-cinema in Taiwan.

IZO Events

The 4th edition of the Korean Popular Culture Workshop will take place on the 16th of November 2022 between 4 and 6 pm CET. The event will be held online on Zoom with prior registration being required (registration link below). The workshop aims to shed light on the new developments in Korean cinema, dramas and music in the digital globalized world. This year the focus of the workshop will be the Korean film industry in the context of globalization and the changes in K-drama content and production generated by the emergence of streaming platforms like Netflix. The guest speakers are Jimmyn Parc, Associate Professor at the University of Malaya, Malaysia and Hyejung Ju, Associate Professor of Mass Communication at Claflin University in South Carolina, USA.

Registration Link


16:00-16:10 CET


16:10 -17:05 CET

The Untold Story of the Korean Film Industry: A Global Business Perspective

Dr. Jimmyn Parc

University of Malaya, Malaysia

17:05-18:00 CET

Korean TV Dramas Meet Netflix: New Tribe of K-Dramas on Streaming Platform

Dr. Hyejung Ju

Claflin University, Orangeburg SC

Online via Zoom

Contact: Casandra Chistinean (

Prof. Dr. Yonson Ahn (

IZO Events

From 1 to 3 September, 2022, IZO co-hosted a major symposium on Japan's position in comparative law. The event at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law, Hamburg, celebrated the 70th birthday of Professor Harald Baum, the preeminent figure in Japanese legal studies in Germany and a long-term member of IZO's academic advisory board.
High-profile speakers from Asia, Europe, the U.S and Australia explored the influence of Japanese law outside Japan. Japan's history and its position as one of the largest economies in Asia suggest a major impact upon its neighbours and beyond and make the country potentially interesting as a source of legal concepts. However, this idea of Japan as an exporter of legal ideas is at odds with the still dominant, hierarchically tinged narrative of Japan as a mere recipient of Western legal ideas.
Within this framework, the talks aimed to assess, from multiple perspectives, the influence of Japanese law upon its neighbours as well as global developments. The participants explored themes such as the fundamental position of Japan in comparative legal studies, the impact of Japanese law upon East and Southeast Asian jurisdictions, as well as Japan's role within global harmonization projects.