Brief History of the Korean Studies Program at Columbia
The history of Korean Studies at Columbia begins as early as 1931, when Korean students in the New York area donated a number of Korean books to Columbia and established a Korean Library and Culture Center. In 1934, Dr. Eungpal Yun, Minister of the Korean Methodist Church, taught the first Korean language course at Columbia. A formal Korean Studies program began in 1962, when a position of Professor of Korean was established. The first scholar to hold the position was Dr. William E. Skillend, a specialist in Korean literature. Dr. Skillend returned to his native England in 1964, at which time he was replaced by Dr. Gari Ledyard, who taught Korean history at Columbia until his retirement in 2000. Also in 1962, the Korean Collection was established within the East Asian Library (now the C.V. Starr East Asian Library), bringing together all books relating to Korea, which until then had been kept in other collections, cataloguing them according to the classification system of the National Central Library in Seoul. Korean-language and Korea-related books and periodicals form a major part of the East Asian Library, overseen by a full time librarian responsible for Korean materials.
Columbia’s Commitment to Korean Studies
In addition to the courses in EALAC, there are Korea-related courses taught regularly in the departments of political science, anthropology, and economics, and in the law and business schools. Besides the Center for Korean Research of the East Asian Institute and the Korean Studies program at EALAC, Columbia also houses the only Center for Korean Legal Studies in the United States. For thirty years, Columbia has been committed to the expansion and improvement of Korean Studies in the United States, and the University will remain intellectually and financially supportive of Korean Studies, as an integral part of its research and curriculum, into the future.
The following Korea-related classes are taught regularly:
Introduction to East Asian Civilizations: Korea, Korean Literature & Film
Korean Politics, South Korean Legal System In Global Economy,
Studies in Literature,
Photography and Video in Asia,
Women Visionaries - Tibet/East Asia
For more information, please click here.
Korean Language Classes
Elementary Korean & Intermediate Korean each maintain three sections; True beginners (with absolutely no background in Korean language), False beginners (with some background in Korean language), Korean heritage.
Advanced Korean & Fourth-Year Korean offer one section each. Additional individual help is offered to accommodate different linguistic levels and to meet students' different needs and goals in studying Korea.
Fifth-Year Korean offers readings of advanced modern literary, historical, political and journalistic texts, and a wide range of materials.
Further information on the Korean language program is available here.
For detailed Korean language course listings, please see the Department of East Asian Language and Cultures or the Directory of Classes.
Korean Studies Group at Columbia
Korean Student Association ay Columbia
Weatherhead East Asian Institute
Korean Studies in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures
Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures
Korean Language Program at Columbia University
Korea Collection at C.V. Starr Library
Search Columbia University Course Bulletin
The Center for Korean Legal Studies