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Capitalist Welfare Regime in US Military Government, 1945-1948

YOON HONGSIK 1

1인하대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

The study found that the origins of modern Korean welfare regime are closely related to the political and economic order of the U.S. military rule between 1945 and 1948. The creation of developmental state in 1960s and 1970s can not be imagined from the standpoint of the U.S. military rule. The U.S. military government dismantled the labor movement and the farmers’ movement, and dealt a devastating blow to leftist political forces. Through this process, the U.S. military government turned the political landscape of the Republic of Korea, which was dominated by left-wing political forces in August 1945, completely transformed into the political landscape dominated by right-wing political forces. Moreover, it would not have been possible without the physical force of the US military government to transplant American capitalism instead of the social (democratic) state that the majority of the Korean people wanted. Through farmland reform, the traditional landowning classes were broken down, the revolutionary farmers turned into conservative peasants, and the distribution of factories owned by the Japanese led to the birth of a new capitalist class that was subordinated to the state. From the viewpoint of the welfare regime, the most significant meaning of the US military government is that it laid the foundations for the developmental state in the 1960s and 1970s in Korea.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.