UW-CKS congratulates Assistant Professor of American Ethnic Studies, Jang Wook Huh, on his receipt of a 2023 ACLS Fellowship. Professor Huh’s award will support the completion of his project, “Afro-Korean” Encounters: The Literary Intersections of Black Liberation Struggles in the US and Anticolonial Movements in Korea, 1910-1953. Please see the details of Professor Huh’s forthcoming work below.
This book examines the literary and cultural connections between Black liberation struggles in the United States and anticolonial movements in Korea during Japanese colonization from 1910-1945 and U.S. military intervention from 1945-1948 and 1950-1953. This cross-racial history manifested in a variety of contexts, ranging from literary works and jazz songs to state apparatuses such as the U.S. Army and an industrial school that could be considered “Tuskegee in Korea.” This project draws on a wide range of archives, including American missionary documents, declassified government files, and military records, as well as literary and cultural texts. In doing so, it investigates the ways in which African American and Korean writers compared U.S. racial discrimination and Asian colonial subjugation to challenge the Japanese and U.S. Empires. By exploring issues of “racial uplift,” shared notions of dispossession, male friendship and homoerotic desire, and Cold War propaganda, this study aims to highlight a little-known legacy of Black internationalism and the creative roles of Koreans in disseminating Black culture.