One thing you hear and read in the papers a lot in Korea is about national development and the rising position of the country due to globalization. It is something my students speak of as well as professors, an awareness that this is a dynamic nation and that continued growth and prosperity require commitment and focus. Also, a part of is a strong nationalism that is expressed often but does not seem to me to be exclusionist in the way of European nationalism. The energy and focus is very much on the new rise to prosperity and importance of Korea. It has indeed been a rather stunning rise from poor, third world divided nation to technologically advanced major economy (if still divided). So it is interesting to read this kind of essay in the newspaper looking approvingly at the dynamic small countries in Europe that have unexpectedly and rapidly used technology and brains to become prosperous, such as Ireland or Estonia ("cool countries" according to Der Speigel). An article by a Seoul National University prof in today's JoongAng Daily concludes "This shows that a small country can become a strong one in the age of globalization when it is equipped with knowledge, creativity and openness."


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