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Social Darwinist Pioneers: The Cases Of Yu Kiljun And Yun Ch’iho

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Chapter Summary

The new guiding principle for natural, personal and social life called Social Darwinism was introduced to Korea via Japan and the United States simultaneously. Several of Morse's East Asian disciples later achieved some prominence. One of them was a biologist, Ishikawa Chiyomatsu, who put Morse's lecture notes into one of Japan's first accounts of evolution and became the foremost advocate of evolutionism in the. Another such disciple was a Korean student named Yu Kiljun, who, being much more of a politician and ideologue than a scientist, influenced a whole new generation of Korea's modernist intelligentsia. The second hero of this chapter, Yun Ch'iho , another Korean who learned Social Darwinism directly from its American adepts, also managed to publish little at all on the topic in the turbulent decades of the 1890's-1900's, the main source for the study of his views being his private diary.

Keywords: Japan; Korea; Social Darwinism; UnitedStates; Yu Kiljun; Yun Ch'iho



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