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Korea: The Impossible Country: South Korea's Amazing Rise from the Ashes: The Inside Story of an Economic, Political and Cultural Phenomenon

Daniel Tudor

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Tuttle
01 November 2018
Development studies; History; Social & cultural history; Cultural studies; Central government policies; Development economics
In just fifty years, South Korea has transformed itself from a failed state, ruined and partitioned by war and decades of colonial rule, into an economic powerhouse and a democracy that serves as a model for other countries.

How was it able to achieve this with no natural resources and a tradition of authoritarian rule? Who are the Koreans and how did they accomplish this second Asian miracle? Through a comprehensive exploration of Korean history, culture and society, and interviews with dozens of experts, celebrated journalist Daniel Tudor seeks answers to these and many other fascinating questions. In Korea: The Impossible Country, Tudor touches on topics as diverse as shamanism, clan-ism, the dilemma posed by North Korea, and the growing international appeal of South Korean pop culture.

This new edition has been updated with additional materials on recent events, including the impeachment of Park Geun-hye and the sinking of the Sewol Ferry. Although South Korea has long been overshadowed by Japan and China, Korea: The Impossible Country illuminates how this small country is one of the great success stories of the postwar period.

'Daniel Tudor covers all the important issues, yet does not simply tell the more familiar stories, but looks deeper and wider to give the full story of Korea today.' - Martin Uden, Former British Ambassador to South Korea
By:   Daniel Tudor
Imprint:   Tuttle
Country of Publication:   United States
Dimensions:   Height: 203mm,  Width: 130mm, 
Weight:   368g
ISBN:   9780804846394
ISBN 10:   0804846391
Pages:   336
Publication Date:   01 November 2018
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Daniel Tudor is from Manchester, England, and graduated with a BA in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from Oxford University. He has lived in Seoul for a many years and served as Korea Correspondent for The Economist from 2010-2013. The first edition of Korea: The Impossible Country received high praise and has been translated into Korean, Chinese, Polish, and Thai. His subsequent book, North Korea Confidential (with James Pearson), was selected by The Economist as one of the best books of 2015. He is also co-founder of Seoul-based The Booth Brewing Company.

Reviews for Korea: The Impossible Country: South Korea's Amazing Rise from the Ashes: The Inside Story of an Economic, Political and Cultural Phenomenon

Daniel Tudor covers all the important issues, yet does not simply tell the more familiar stories but looks deeper and wider to give the full story of Korea today. -Martin Uden, Former British Ambassador to South Korea Tudor's Korea: The Impossible Country is a fascinating overview of daily life in Korea. Tudor's in-depth analysis is the one of an insider who has never lost sight of the view from the outside. His book helps you feel comfortable right from your first visit to Korea. -David Syz, Swiss Secretary of State for Economic Affairs Written with affection and deep knowledge, Daniel Tudor's book fills a huge gap in our understanding of one of Asia's least known countries. His engaging narrative overturns the stereotypes by depicting a society which, though full of stresses, strains and contradictions, has overcome poverty and dictatorship to become a prosperous democracy. South Korea's transformation into a vibrant, modern state is, as he says, a story that deserves to be better known. Tudor has done the impossible country a service by opening its secrets to the world. -David Pilling, Asia Editor, Financial Times Recommended for expats and any readers who are keen to learn more about Asian cultures, Korea: The Impossible Country is a well-researched and authoritative window into a country and its people. -The Expat Magazine With a new generation every five years, it's hard to keep up with Korea. This book is long overdue, but Daniel Tudor has done a magnificent job filling the gap. Not only has he captured the new Korea, but he does so in an effortless style that leaves the reader wanting more. -Michael Breen, author of The Koreans Mr. Tudor pushes into new social and economic territory with his book, including the rising role of immigrants, multicultural families and even gay people in South Korea. He lays out some of the contradictory behavior one finds in South Korea, such as the unending desire for new and trendy gadgets and fashion and yet the tunnel-like view of what constitutes a successful life. -Wall Street Journal Sixty years ago, South Korea was an economic wasteland. Today, it is not only the world's 11th largest economy but also a vibrant democracy and an emerging cultural force. This transformation is the subject of a new book, Korea: The Impossible Country, by Daniel Tudor, Korea correspondent for The Economist.' -Time Magazine Tudor, Seoul correspondent for The Economist, provides a fairly perfunctory account of the 'miracle on the Han River,' which saw South Korea transformed from postwar ruin to prosperous democracy within four decades. The book's real value comes in its exploration of the cultural forces behind the country's zeal for self-improvement. -Financial Times


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