Contemporary Korean cinema

Culture, identity and politics

By Hyangjin Lee

Contemporary Korean cinema

Book Information

  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 978-0-7190-6008-3
  • Pages: 256
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £15.99
  • Published Date: March 2001
  • BIC Category: The arts / Film theory & criticism, PERFORMING ARTS / Film & Video / General, Film history, theory & criticism, Film and Media


The first in-depth, comprehensive study of Korean cinema offering original insight into the relationships between ideology and the art of cinema from East Asian perspectives. Combines issues of contemporary Korean culture and cinematic representation of the society and people in both North and South Korea. Covers the introduction of motion pictures in 1903, Korean cinema during the Japanese colonial period (1910-45) and the development of North and South Korean cinema up to the 1990s. Introduces the works of Korea's major directors, and analyses the Korean film industry in terms of film production, distribution and reception. Based on this historical analysis, the study investigates ideological constructs in seventeen films, eight from North Korea and nine from South Korea.


Part one: The creation of national identity: a history of cinema
1. Korean film during the Japanese colonial period
2. The development of North Korean film
3. The development of South Korean film
Part two: Gender and cinematic adaptations of Ch'unhyangjon
4. The origin of Ch'unhyangjon
5. The significance of Ch'unhyangjon in Korean film history
6. The images of Ch'unhyangjon in South Korean films
7. The images of Ch'unhyangjon in North Korean films
8. Ch'unhyangjon and patriarchal gender realtions in Korean society
Part three: Nationhood and the cinematic representation of history
9. Anti-imperialism in three North Korean films
10. Anti-commmunism in three South Korean films
11. Familyhood and nationhood
Part four: Class and cultural identities in contemporary Korea
12. Class conflicts in three North Korean films
13. Class dynamics in three South Korean films
14. Class experience and the cultural tradition


Hyangjin Lee is a Senior Teaching Fellow in the School of East Asian Studies at the University of Sheffield

Newsletter Sign Up

Manchester University Press

Your cart is empty.

Select your shipping destination to estimate postage costs

(Based on standard shipping costs)

Final cost calculated on checkout
Promotional codes can be added on Checkout