Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Similarities between Japan and Korea...

Its interesting to me how some Korean historical events have similar occurrences on the Japanese side. For instance, Japan had their own anti-christian purges focusing more on the Jesuits I believe rather than Catholics, but the consequences were the same with Japanese follwers and their European priests not only forced underground, but, at least publicly, to recant their allegiance to the foreign religion or face humiliation or even death by crucifixion. A good historical novel on the subject is Silence by Shusako Endo. Definitely worth the read.

Additionally, Japan almost had its own General Sherman incident when Commodore Perry sailed up a river to the capitol of Japan to institute foreign relations with the U.S. The Japanese tried to force Perry to leave, but Perry ignored their requests and continued up the river and anchored there until the Japanese let them ashore. Luckily, none were killed.

Just thought both of the these instances, while not entirely comparable, were interestingly similar to say the least.

1 comment:

  1. I thought it was interesting to read your observation of the similarity between Korea and Japan. Especially so, because I had the same thought reoccur time and time again as I served my mission in Seoul. It's just my opinion, but Koreans are more like the Japanese than they will ever admit-not identical, by any means-but certainly much more similar than they will ever let on.