Economic Concentration and Disparities: The Political Economy of Class, Region and the Chaebol

  • Dae Hwan Kim
Part of the St Antony’s Series book series


The understanding of Korean development in recent decades has suffered from oversimplification in several respects. The assessment of distribution or equality is a case in point. The South Korean experience is widely characterised by the simple formulation of ‘growth with equity’.1 Aside from its analytical weaknesses,2 this argument is sharply contradicted by the intensifying conflicts over the distribution of income and wealth in Korean society. These conflicts arise partly from the Korean people’s strong historical aspirations for equality,3 but they are also grounded in the reality of the highly unequal distribution of economic power which has accompanied Korea’s rapid aggregate economic growth.


Trade Union Korean Peninsula Presidential Election Political Influence Labour Movement 
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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 1997

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  • Dae Hwan Kim

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