Youjoung Kim

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

Johns Hopkins U.

Grant number

Gr. 10521

Approve Date

April 6, 2023

Project Title

Kim, Youjoung (Johns Hopkins U.) "Law and State-Surveillance of Kinship: Bureaucratic Procedures of Jeju 4.3 Incident Special Act in South Korea"

Jeju 4.3 massacres (30,000 deaths) took place on Jeju Island, South Korea from 1947-1954 by the South Korean military and police on grounds that the islanders were communist dissidents. The Jeju 4.3 Incident Special Act (2000), enacted by the South Korean government to make restitutions, recognizes the dead as ‘victims,’ no longer traitors of the state, and allows the victims’ families to publicly reclaim kinship suppressed by y_njwaje, a guilt-by-association system in which close relatives share culpability for an individual’s criminal actions. However, restrictions on who could count as victims render uncertain the status of those families with unrecognized victims and their modes of reclaiming and mourning the dead. In this vein, my research asks: How do the bureaucratic procedures that constitute legal victimhood re-instantiate violence? Through ethnographic and archival research, my research explores 1) how bureaucratic technologies used to establish the legal categories of ‘victim’ and ‘bereaved’ translate into state surveillance of kinship through bureaucratic means and 2) how relatives negotiate this state surveillance within the ritual domain as they seek to sustain relations with the dead. In so doing, it aims to examine how the Jeju 4.3 Incident Special Act (2000) may reanimate state surveillance of kinship