Portal:Korea

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Introduction

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Korea is a region in East Asia; since 1948 it has been divided between two distinct sovereign states: North Korea and South Korea. Located on the Korean Peninsula, Korea is bordered by China to the northwest, Russia to the northeast, and neighbours Japan to the east by the Korea Strait and the Sea of Japan (East Sea).

Korea emerged as a singular political entity in 676 AD, after centuries of conflict among the Three Kingdoms of Korea, which were unified as Unified Silla to the south and Balhae to the north. Unified Silla divided into three separate states during the Later Three Kingdoms period. Goryeo, which had succeeded Goguryeo, defeated the two other states and united the Korean Peninsula. Around the same time, Balhae collapsed and its last crown prince fled south to Goryeo. Goryeo (also spelled as Koryŏ), whose name developed into the modern exonym "Korea", was a highly cultured state that created the world's first metal movable type in 1234. However, multiple invasions by the Mongol Empire during the 13th century greatly weakened the nation, which eventually agreed to become a vassal state after decades of fighting. Following military resistance under King Gongmin which ended Mongol political influence in Goryeo, severe political strife followed, and Goryeo eventually fell to a coup led by General Yi Seong-gye, who established Joseon in 1392.

Selected article

Chong Chul Rhee, one of the twelve original masters of taekwondo, founded Rhee Taekwon-Do in the mid-1960s

Rhee Taekwon-Do is a martial art school in Australia and New Zealand teaching the Korean martial art of taekwondo. Chong Chul Rhee, one of the original masters of taekwondo, founded the school in the mid-1960s. Two of Rhee's brothers, Chong Hyup Rhee and Chong Yoon Rhee, later came to assist him in the 1970s. C. C. Rhee claims the title 'Father of Australian Taekwondo' and Rhee Taekwon-Do is widely publicised as being Australia's first and biggest taekwondo school. It has at least 294 publicly-listed dojang (training halls) in Australia (and at least five such dojang in New Zealand), with perhaps around 1,400 dojang in total at its peak. Several Australian martial art school founders received their foundational taekwondo training in Rhee's school. Rhee Taekwon-Do is an independent martial art organisation. It was once affiliated to the International Taekwon-Do Federation (ITF), but has had no relation to the World Taekwondo Federation (WTF).

Selected image

Taepyeongmu
Credit: Ddol-mang

Taepyeongmu (태평무), a Korean dance wishing a great peace for Korea. Its origin is unknown but the late Han Seungjun (한성준 韓成俊 1875-1941), a known dancer and drummer, rearranged it in the early 20th century. It is assumed to have been a court dance occasionally performed by kings during the Joseon dynasty of Korea. Therefore, the costumes used for dancers are almost similar to a king and queen's gwanbok (관복, official clothing). Taepyeongmu is designated as one of the Important Intangible Cultural Properties of South Korea.

Web resources

General information

  • Official website of South Korea
  • Official website of North Korea
  • CIA World Factbook: South Korea
  • CIA World Factbook: North Korea
  • South Korean Tourism Organization

News in English

  • Asia Today Korea
  • Billboard k-pop news
  • The Chosun Ilbo
  • The Dong-a Ilbo
  • KBS World Radio
  • The Korea Herald
  • Korea Joongang Daily
  • The Korea Times
  • K-Pop Herald
  • Yonhap News Agency

Selected biography

Tessa Ludwick (born October 5, 1988) is a Korean American actress from Apollo Beach, Florida. She began acting at age five, when she held a lead role in Allegra's Window, a Nick Jr. children's television program show taped at Universal Studios in Orlando, Florida. When filming on Allegra's Window ended in May 1996, seven-year-old Ludwick went from Allegra's Window to a lead role in Big Bag, a live action television puppet program for preschoolers on the Cartoon Network. At 8, she landed the role of Kate, an orphan girl in the touring Broadway musical Annie, the 20th Anniversary. For the next eight months, she toured the United States and Canada with the musical, during which time Ludwick gave eight performances per week. In 2003, Ludwick appeared as the character Yumi in thirteen, an autobiographical drama film based on American film actress Nikki Reed's experiences as a 12 and 13-year-old girl. In 2004, Ludwick appeared on Movie Surfers, a Disney Channel mini-show where four teenagers go behind the scenes to report on Walt Disney-related films. Three years later in June 2007, Ludwick began work on Teen Witch the Musical, a stage musical based on the 1989 fantasy-comedy film Teen Witch.

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