I recently took a day and traveled out to the Academia Sinica in Taiwan, heading to the Joint Library of Humanities and Social Sciences (人文社會科學聯合圖書館) in search for some primary sources related to my research area. While I was there, I happened across some Classical Chinese Primers (漢文讀本, 한문독본) that were compiled and edited by the Japanese to be used in the colonial schools in Korea. I thought I would share some snippets I took from these primers.
I’m really curious how these texts were taught, especially seeing the way Hangul is mixed throughout the text, similar to the way Classical Chinese primers were compiled in Japan at the same time.
Unfortunately, I have yet to find a proper class schedule for the schools to know when and how often these books may have been used, or under what circumstances. I’m also curious if it was also used as a colonial tool to try and attract middle and upper class parents to send their kids to the government opened schools, similar to what happened in Taiwan. Was it a way to continue the education of the traditional schools in Korea? There’s still much to learn about the education system in Korea under the Japanese.
Still, it’s a very interesting part of the overall history of Classical Chinese education in Korea.