Changing Power Relations in Northeast Asia: Implications for Relations between Japan and South Korea, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Changing Power Relations in Northeast Asia

Implications for Relations between Japan and South Korea, 1st Edition

Edited by Marie Soderberg


192 pages | 4 B/W Illus.

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This book analyses the Japanese-South Korean relationship from various angles including politics, security, economics, culture and immigration. In a sense the two countries are natural partners. Both are democratic societies, they are economically strong and are the only two Asian countries that are members of the OECD. Both have security treaties with the USA, they share security concerns when it comes to the North Korean nuclear threat as well as the rise of China, which at the same time has become the largest trading partner for both. Japan and South Korea also share similar values, customs, cultures and languages. All this would make it logical for them to have a strong cooperative bilateral relationship. Yet this is still not the case. The contributors to this book examine how the relationship is affected by the changing power relations in Northeast Asia and find a most complex situation.


Understanding how Japan and Korea interact is central for anyone that wants to understand the politics of East Asia. This volume will be of huge interest to students and scholars of Asian politics, as well as those interested in political science and peace and conflict resolution more generally.

Marie Söderberg is Professor and Director of the European Institute of Japanese Studies, Sweden.


"Marie Soderberg's edited volume is likely to become the standard reference for the study of contemporary Japan - South Korea relations… Soderberg's book is the most up to date and accurate analysis of Japan - South Korea relations in the post-cold war era marked by the rise of China and relative decline of the United States and by regional integration." - Lam Peng Er, National University of Singapore; Journal of Japanese Studies 39.1, 2013.

"…a volume filled with insight and sensitivity to a most complex relationship." - Robert Bedeski, Pacific Affairs: Volume 85, No. 1 - March 2012

Table of Contents

1 Introduction, Marie Söderberg 2 Why the History issue between Japan and South Korea is likely to Persist, Kan Kimura 3 Increasing Cooperation in the Midst of Recurring Frictions, Cheol Hee Park 4 Resurgence of the Hard Liners: Japan and the two Koreas, T.J. Pempel 5 Historical Memory Versus Democratic Reassurance, Paul Midford 6 Substituting Multilateralism, Guiding Trilateralism, Yoichiro Sato 7 Ambivalence and Resistance, Mikyoung Kim 8 Toward a Post-Cold War and Post-industrial Harmony between Japan and Korea, Ingyu Oh 9 The struggle for a decent life in Japan, Marie Söderberg 10 Conclusion, Marie Söderberg

About the Editor

Marie Söderberg is Professor and Director of the European Institute of Japanese Studies, Sweden.

About the Series

European Institute of Japanese Studies East Asian Economics and Business Series

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
POLITICAL SCIENCE / International Relations / General
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / General