Director's Message

Founded in 2016 with a grant from the Academy of Korean Studies, the Center for Critical Korean Studies (CCKS) has become an important hub at UCI for research, scholarly exchange, and community outreach. In spring 2019, we were proud to have hosted a conference, “War and Women’s Human Rights: Testimonies of the Comfort Women,” which was organized by Professor Chungmoo Choi and featured a screening of Min Kyu-dong’s film "HERSTORY" (2018) followed by a director talk. Then in fall 2019, we hosted a conference organized by CCKS founding director, Kyung Hyun Kim, entitled “Korean Hip-Hop and New Explorations of Afro-Asian Identity.” The highlight of the conference was a performance by Korean hip hop legends, Tiger JK, Yoonmirae, and Bizzy  plus Kurtis Blow at the Irvine Barclay Theatre. In 2019-2020, we will also be hosting our fourth postdoctoral fellow, Hye-kyoung Kwon, who comes to us with a Ph.D. in Theater and Performance Studies from the School of Theater, Film, and Television at UCLA.
As we enter our fourth year, CCKS will strive toward our goal of being the most active and cutting-edge Korean studies center in the United States. We will continue to support our top-notch faculty, provide forums for student development, and secure the future of the center by strengthening our ties with our community partners. As part of these efforts, we will host frequent events throughout the year, all of which are open to everyone in the UCI community and to the broader public in general. We hope you will join us at one of these events soon!

Joseph Jonghyun Jeon
Professor of English
Faculty Director of CCKS