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Exegetical Resistance: The Bible and Protestant Critical Insiders in South Korea

Independent Scholar, Kwang Ju, Kyong Gi, Korea
Religions 2018, 9(10), 301;
Received: 13 September 2018 / Revised: 1 October 2018 / Accepted: 3 October 2018 / Published: 7 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Religiosity, Secularity and Pluralism in the Global East)
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South Korean Protestantism has attracted scholars for a number of reasons including its almost unrivaled numeric growth and vibrancy in East Asia. Recent observations, however, have also noticed its negative perceptions among the general public in Korea, including those who profess to be Protestants. This study focuses on movements by Protestant “critical insiders,” namely, those who are committed to their Protestant faiths yet are highly critical of the ways in which the Protestant religion is taught, believed, and practiced in South Korea. Such emphasis on resistance fits well the scholarly agenda of cultural studies. The subjects of observation in this study, however, can take the cultural studies orthodoxy and flip it on its head. In cultural studies, it has been asserted that unintended-creative readings of cultural—and religious—texts on the part of the readers indicate their resistive agency rather than subjugation. Korean Protestant critical insiders’ various activities pertaining to the Bible, however, entail reversing such observations about interpreting cultural texts and empowerment. Instead of turning the signs upside down, as typically celebrated in cultural studies, what they aspire to do is follow more radically the intended meanings/readings of the text. Rescuing the text, so to speak, is paramount for religiously loyal resistance. View Full-Text
Keywords: Korea; Protestantism; cultural studies Korea; Protestantism; cultural studies
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Hong, S.M. Exegetical Resistance: The Bible and Protestant Critical Insiders in South Korea. Religions 2018, 9, 301.

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