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Rationalizing Korea"The Rise of the Modern State, 1894-1945"$
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Kyung Moon Hwang

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780520288317

Published to California Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520288317.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 18 September 2021

State and Religion

State and Religion

Secularization and Pluralism

Chapter:
(p.146) Five State and Religion
Source:
Rationalizing Korea
Author(s):

Kyung Moon Hwang

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520288317.003.0006

In tackling the relationship between state and religion, chapter 5 examines state secularization, which, in Korea, championed religious pluralism as the overarching principle. This chapter argues that state secularization was complicated by the comprehensive influence of Confucianism in the Joseon dynastic state as both a statecraft and a religion. The modernizing state sloughed off Confucianism into the newly conceived sphere of religion, which came under increasing regulatory control through the erection of a firm wall between the realms of the state and religion. The secularizing, civilizing state granted recognition, through classification, to certain religious entities, which gave the appearance of pluralism, while proclaiming less institutionalized religious expressions as socially destabilizing “pseudo-religions.” This state rationalization was eventually overwhelmed by the demands of intensive assimilation during wartime, as the state became increasingly theocratic.

Keywords:   religious history, secularization, pluralism, Confucianism, Korean Christianity, Korean Buddhism, pseudo-religion, church and state relations, theocracy, civic religion

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