Cross–Cultural Korea

Asian Studies in Serbia, Croatia, and Slovenia: Strategies for the Development of Korean Studies at the University of Split

Kim Sang Hun

Research Article
Accepted: Jan 10, 2020

Unlike Poland, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania, and Bulgaria—which became satellite countries of the Soviet Union after the Second World War—Yugoslavia maintained its own communist economic and social system as it neither belonged to the United States nor to the Soviet Union. Unlike the earlier introduction of “North Korean Studies” by the other communist countries, Yugoslavia opened departments of “Indology,” “Sinology,” and “Japanology,” recognizing them as representatives of Asian Studies rather than “North Korean Studies.” Asian Studies in Yugoslavia, which disbanded into six countries after the 1990s, was distinct in each of the republics. In the Republic of Serbia, for example, “Sinology” was representative of Asian Studies, while in the Republic of Croatia it was “Indology,” and in the Republic of Slovenia it was “Japanology.” The present study examines the characteristics and backgrounds of “Sinology” at the University of Belgrade in Serbia, “Indology” at the University of Zagreb in Croatia, and “Japanology” and the newly-formed “Korean Studies” (in 2015) at the University of Ljubljana in Slovenia. Moreover, it describes the role of Korean government agencies and local universities and scholars in establishing Korean Studies in foreign universities. This study asserts that in order to establish Korean Studies in a foreign university, that university and its scholars must be actively involved, essentially leading the process, while Korean and local government agencies should assume the role of facilitator. This paper has been developed on the basis of “The Current Status of Korean Studies in Slovenia” which was published in the 2016 issue of the Journal of Contemporary Korean Studies. However, because of its importance in relation to the establishment of a Korean Studies program in Split, it is being reprinted here with a new focus on “Asian Studies in Serbia, Croatia, and Slovenia: Strategies for the Development of Korean Studies at the University of Split.”

Asian Studies in Former Yugoslavia, Japanology and Korean Studies in Slovenia, Korean Studies in Ljubljana University, Indology in Croatia, Sinology in Serbia, Korean Studies in Split