Daehan Min-kuk (Republic of Korea)
  • Barry Turner
Part of the The Statesman’s Yearbook book series (SYBK)


Korea was united in a single kingdom under the Silla dynasty from 668. China, which claimed a vague suzerainty over Korea, recognized the latter’s independence in 1895. After the Russo-Japanese war of 1904–05, Korea was virtually a Japanese protectorate. It was formally annexed on 29 Aug. 1910. Following the collapse of Japan in 1945, American and Soviet forces entered Korea dividing the country into portions separated by the 38th parallel of latitude. Negotiations between the Americans and the Russians regarding the future of Korea broke down in May 1946. In 1948 two separate states were proclaimed. In the south, Syngman Rhee, former president of the Korean government in exile, was elected president of the Republic of Korea, while in the north, Kim Il-sung, a major in the Red Army who had marched back into Korea with the Soviet forces, was proclaimed premier of the Democratic Peoples’ Republic of Korea. The US occupation forces withdrew from South Korea in June 1949. Military equipment promised by the USA as part of their aid programme was still on its way to Korea when the North Koreans launched, in June 1950, a full-scale invasion across the 38th parallel. The war, in which North Korea received support from the Chinese army and South Korea from the UN forces and the USA, lasted for three years, killed some 5m. people and destroyed an estimated 43% of Korea’s industrial plant and 33% of her homes.


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Further Reading

  1. National Bureau of Statistics. Korea Statistical Yearbook Google Scholar
  2. Bank of Korea. Economic Statistics Yearbook Google Scholar
  3. Castley, R., Korea’s Economic Miracle. London, 1997CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Cumings, B., Korea’s Place in the Sun: A Modern History. New York, 1997Google Scholar
  5. Das, D. K., Korean Economic Dynamism. London, 1991Google Scholar
  6. Eckert, C. J. et al., Korea Old and New: a History. Harvard Univ. Press, 1991Google Scholar
  7. Gibney, F., Korea’s Quiet Revolution: from Garrison State to Democracy. New York, 1992Google Scholar
  8. Hoare, James E., Korea. [Bibliography] ABC-Clio, Oxford and Santa Barbara (CA), 1997Google Scholar
  9. Kang, M.-H. The Korean Business Conglomerate: Chaebol Then and Now. Univ. of California Press, 1996Google Scholar
  10. Kim, D.-H. and Tat, Y.-K. (eds.) The Korean Peninsula in Transition. London, 1997CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Simons, G., Korea: the Search for Sovereignty. London, 1995CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Song, P.-N., The Rise of the Korean Economy. 2nd ed. OUP, 1994Google Scholar
  13. Tennant, R., A History of Korea. London, 1996Google Scholar
  14. National statistical office: National Bureau of Statistics, Ministry of Finance and Economy, SeoulGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Barry Turner

There are no affiliations available

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