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The Conceptual History of Individual and Natural Rights in 1910s Korea: A Nominalistic Turn

  • Journal of Humanities, Seoul National University
  • 2019, 76(2), pp.205-235
  • DOI : 10.17326/jhsnu.76.2.201905.205
  • Publisher : Institute of Humanities, Seoul National University
  • Research Area : Humanities > Other Humanities
  • Received : May 8, 2019
  • Accepted : May 13, 2019
  • Published : May 31, 2019

Yun Sang Hyun 1

1경남대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

While the intellectual group Hakchikang has been recognized as a leading liberal force in previous studies, this article shows that some concepts of the ‘individual’ in 1910s’ Hakchikang lies within the ethnic organism associated with the theory of ‘Nationalism’(國粹論). Unlike the intellectuals of the late Joseon Dynasty, such as Yu Gil-joon and Park Young-hyo, their notion of the ‘individual’ prominently denied ‘Natural Right’ and ‘Du Contrat Social ou Principes du Droit Politiquethe’. Instead of dismantling the stereotypic social organic worldview of the Neo-Confucianism kinship-state network and forming a new world view based on the individual perception of the molecular ‘individual’, it shows that the combination of the existing concept of social organism and the concept of the individual was mainstream. Meanwhile there was a case where the western recognition of nominalism was introduced through the individual premise of social evolution theory. Though only a small number expressed it explicitly, it also became an occasion for the spread of individual awareness.

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