The initial breakthroughs surrounding the Korean peninsula earlier this year focused disproportionately on the summit meetings between heads of state and, to a lesser extent, consultations among high-level officials. In contrast, this talk will explore the role of social movements in generating conditions favorable to inter-Korean reconciliation while also considering how peace activists have sought to reframe the way diplomatic developments were understood - with varying degrees of success - for the sake of furthering the process of bringing the Korean War to an end after nearly 70 years.
Nan Kim is Associate Professor in the Department of History at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee, where she is director of the Public History Program. She is the author of Memory, Reconciliation, and Reunions in South Korea: Crossing the Divide (2017) and a contributing author to the Routledge Handbook on Memory and Reconciliation in East Asia (2016). Formally trained as a cultural anthropologist, she takes an interdisciplinary approach to contemporary history and ethnographic analysis in her explorations of contested historical memory, dissent movements, peace activism, reconciliation, and notions of temporality and subjectivity. Her research has been supported by a Fulbright grant and fellowships from the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, Seoul National University, and the Center for 21st Century Studies at UW-Milwaukee. She currently serves on the editorial board of the Seoul Journal of Korean Studies and the steering committee of the international peace organization Women Cross DMZ.