Duc, sequere, aut de via decede!

Update: My school will not be rehiring me.

December 30th, 2006 . by Gerry-Bevers

For those who are interested, I was informed by E-mail on December 23rd that my university, where I have worked for the past six years, would not be rehiring me as an English instructor. I may have more to say about his later, but for now I will just post the letter that I received from my department head:

게리 선생님께

어제 교무처장에게 다시 전화해서 선생님과의 계약문제를 빨리 결정해달라고 재촉했습니다.  오늘 아침 총장, 처장들이 참석하는 회의에서 선생님과의 계약문제를 의논한 결과   다시 계약하지 않는 것으로 결정을 냈다고 합니다. 제가  교무처장으로부터 연락을 받은 것이 오전 11시 쯤인데, 그때 제가 학회참석 때문에 대전행 기차안에 있어서 바로 연락 못드렸습니다. 조금 전에야 집에 도착해서 연락드립니다. 제 생각에는 아무래도 독도 문제로 인해 학교에서 이런 결정을 내린 것 같습니다.  이런 소식 전하게 되어서 저도 마음이 좋지 않습니다.

Teacher Gerry,

Yesterday, I called again to the Dean of Academic Affairs and urged him to quickly make a decision on your contract problem. This morning, at a meeting attended by the president and the deans of the school, your contract problem was discussed, and it was decided that your contract would not be renewed. I was informed by the Dean of Academic Affairs at about 11 a.m. At the time I was on a train to Daejeon to attend an academic meeting, so I could not contact you right away. I am contacting you now after having arrived home just a little while ago. I think there is little doubt that the school made this decision because of the Dokdo problem. It also hurts me to have to relay this news.

I added the red text for emphasis.

45 Responses to “Update: My school will not be rehiring me.”

  1. comment number 1 by: MarkA


  2. comment number 2 by: pacifist


    It is obvious from this letter that they did this because of Dokdo problem. I can’t understand why Dokdo is a problem to a Korean university. This may prove that Korean universities are under strict control of Korean government and tthat here is no freedom of thought and freedom of speech in the educationl system in Korea.

    There are many anti-governmant scholars in western universities including Japanese ones, and they won’t be fired because of what they write or what they say.

    Gerry, I think it’s a great waste of talent. There should be a good place for you, and Japan should be one of options (I’m serious). Anyway, I hope you will be fine.

  3. comment number 3 by: Slick Willy

    Gee how predictable. Can we make this an international story? How do we educate the world about the “real” Korea!? It will soon be impossible to attract any foreign talent into Korea. Amazing.

  4. comment number 4 by: ponta

    I think there is little doubt that the school made this decision because of the Dokdo

    It is obvious for the third party.
    But I know how they gonna handle it. They will
    1) make no comment or
    2) deny it and/or
    3) will cites other reasons and/or will find faults with Gerry for not renewing the contract.

    So we’ve got to be careful here.

    But why did this guy mention the Dokdo?
    Did he just want to let Gerry know the reason?
    Did he warn him not to report the truth of Dokdo on the Internet if he wanted to live in Korea?…….

    Anyway how did Korean netizen know the university Gerry used to work? and how can I know it? I am curious.

  5. comment number 5 by: myCoree

    The labor market in Korea is not ‘flowing’. Half-frozen !
    Cheer up.

    pacifist Said:
    December 30, 2006 at 9:20 am

    I can’t understand why Dokdo is a problem to a Korean university. This may prove that Korean universities are under strict control of Korean government and that here is no freedom of thought and freedom of speech in the educational system in Korea.

    The idea that Dokdo belongs to Korea is generalized everywhere in Korea. So, they might conclude the decision within themselves. But, there might be some pressures from outside or upside.

    There should be a good place for you, and Japan should be one of options (I’m serious).

    Regarded that he contributed so much energy to Korea and he gained the vast historical and linguistic results, he’d better stay within Korea or return to Korea after some out-stay.

    ponta Said:

    They will
    3) will cites other reasons and/or will find faults with Gerry for not renewing the contract.

    This is the most possible. Or, they may say boldly that they dismissed him because he spread some improper claims about Dokdo and Korea which made them lose their dignity..

    Anyway how did Korean netizen know the university Gerry used to work? and how can I know it? I am curious.

    In my case, I found his university and photo through internet by myself. Not so easy, not so difficult. I usually use the Naver. Type his ‘real name’ !

  6. comment number 6 by: jonnyh

    Pacifist noted

    There are many anti-governmant scholars in western universities including Japanese ones, and they won’t be fired because of what they write or what they say.

    There is a big difference.
    Foreigners are outsiders here, in some ways by Korean law, and definitely by practice. It’s something we need to get used to if we want to get along here. There are also many advantages to being a foreigner here which don’t need to be explained to anyone living in Korea.
    Except in rare cases, foreigners don’t get tenure at Korean universities, and if they do, it’s, in most cases, only a word. Any difficulties will be resolved like Gerry’s were. Differences of opinion are not that highly valued here. Duh.
    And really, it’s not all that different in other parts of the world, no matter what the rules say. Academic freedom is only for those who are not replaceable. And for those who can be independent of others’ opinions.
    There are lots of other jobs, and better ways to make money than jobs too.
    Good luck.

  7. […] In K-blog news, one K-blogger has lost his job after blogging about Dokdo, while another found out he doesn’t live in the blast zone, and another discovered that a Korean wine tunnel is not all it was cracked up to be.  One of the most prominent K-bloggers is pondering giving up blogging all together.  Additionally, after reading some of the Marmot’s Stupid Foreigner Tricks, I really think someone should create the Korea version of the Darwin Award.  I would have to think that this guy would be one of this year’s finalists. […]

  8. comment number 8 by: mattrosencrance

    I don’t know Gerry’s nationality, but someone with his language skills would do well as a Foreign Service Officer for the US Government or his country’s equivalent. Needless to say, that talent has been going to waste on ingrates.

    Let’s face it people: they’re going to continue the cult of Dokdo, the demonization of a benign Japan and their best friend in history, the US; to ignore that the North Koreans have killed, starved, tortured and prostituted more Koreans than the Japs ever did, to insist that electrical fans can kill you in your sleep, to plug kimchi like a 19th century elixir salesman and to do whatever zany, procrastinating-on-civility-and/or-maturity gimick that they can think up.

    We won’t change them through rational example. Go over there, get paid, if you meet one you like, marry her/him and get her/him the hell out of wackyland and into a country that’s interested in transparency and meritocracy, instead of nepotism and self-aggrandizing delusions.

  9. comment number 9 by: ponta

    Thanks. You are being fair.
    If there are more people like you, I think Korea will change for the better a

    You know, it is perfectly okay to believe Dokdo as Korean territory, but holding belief that Dokdo belongs to Korea is one thing; protecting free speech is another. I think that is what Korean people should understand.

    Of course in Japan too, there are idiot ultra-nationalists who pressure a professor to be fired because of what he/she said. But fortunately academy will not listen to the idiots, not because the university think the idiots are wrong, the professor is right, but because academic freedom, freedom of speech is essential for the democracy, free society, the development of the country. Japan has a bitter experience of expelling a professor in an militaristic period before and during the war.

    There are Japanese professors who hold Dokdo belongs to Korea. I don’t agree with them, but I shudder at the thought that they would have to quite job because of their belief.

    As a strategy for the debate for dokdo, I think it is detrimental for Korea.
    I know Korean argument because I have an access to Korean argument.
    So, I know the weak points of Korean side and Japanese side. I know how to defend Japanese claim.
    Koreans have no access to Japanese argument. Korea does not know the weak points of Korean side, and therefore, she does not know how to defend it. People all over the world will know Korean weak points in the argument for dokdo,they might think Koreans are just shouting, singing, dancing for Dokdo without basis.

    It is very unfortunate even the Korean intellectuals could not understand the meaning of this incident. I hope Korean media will pick up this incident and make it an opportunity to do a soul-searching.

    I am gonna send e mail to several media to inform this incident. I for one suggest people to do the same. Let’s see how Korean media respond, let’s see if Korea is self-corrective society.


    (But if it bring Gerry demerits, I’ll stop it. let me know if someone has an

    Checking his former university is not easy for non native speaker.

    Gachon Medical School?

  10. […] I guess many of us saw this coming.  Gerry Bevers at Occidentalism has been fired: For those who are interested, I was informed by E-mail on December 23rd that my university, where I have worked for the past six years, would not be rehiring me as an English instructor. […]

  11. comment number 11 by: achoi02

    i just came to say happy new yrs but…

    it pains me see such happen to someone who’s put so much dedication in exposing the truth amongst a mountain of resistance.. 힘내세요 개리씨..

  12. comment number 12 by: Sonagi

    I don’t know Gerry’s nationality, but someone with his language skills would do well as a Foreign Service Officer for the US Government or his country’s equivalent.

    There is an upper age limit of 35 years old for entrance to the US Foreign Service. Moreover, officers get moved around every three years to new assignments. A friend who fluent in Korean entered the Foreign Service a few years ago. She started in Mumbai and is now in Kuala Lumpur. The Foreign Service awards bonus pay to officers who obtain certain proficiency levels in the language of the host country, yet it does not seem to take prior language skills into account when assigning posts.

    I was interested in the Foreign Service at one time until I found out that I could be posted just about anywhere and would get moved around a lot. As a teacher, I can pick my own destination, and teacher salaries are comparable to the salaries of FSOs and CIA/FBI linguist analysts, and teachers get more vacation time.

  13. comment number 13 by: tarion

    Gerry your expression of ideas are, most of the times, humorously and offensively cynical (Im a Korean). Your posts are often very harsh and one-sided, and no doubt they are so by design. Im sad to see immature intolerance barring Korea from being a more global and broad-minded society. Above all I am sorry for your unfair treatment at your former job, and thank you for voicing out critiques that nobody wants to hear in a foreign land. I hope the coming new year of pigs will grant you prosperity and rectification. Happy New Year~

  14. comment number 14 by: mattrosencrance


    I understand what you’re saying. I’m not a cheerleader for them, but if you enter as and FSO with an MA, then you start at $55,000. I’ve seen this pay beaten by ESL positions only in a few Arabic gulf states.

    Moreover, I have to say that I’ve only taught in Korea, but I don’t see the folks in those Arabic gulf states treating Westerners much better than the Koreans. A friend of mine who’s still an ESL professional got fed up with the lack of respect, standards, curricula and sanity in Korea so he went to Oman. Luckily he brought his wife with him – it’d suck to be single there. Sure he clears $90,000 a year, but he’s living under sharia law.

    I think that if I could find a market where I wasn’t reduced to a dancing albino monkey and I could stack serious cash, I might consider doing it again, but probably not.

  15. comment number 15 by: Sonagi

    Secure long-term job prospects, higher pay, and better benefits were the reasons I switched from tertiary to K-12 teaching, and it is K-12 expatriate school teacher salaries that I was comparing to GS salaries. In most countries, adult ESL does not pay anything close to a Western salary.

  16. comment number 16 by: Errol

    Email instead of texting a dismissal? Non-confrontational method saves face. ㅋㅋ

    I’ve been reading the posts on Marmot’s Hole and they’re pretty much on the money.

    A Korean professor or a student snitched on you for not following the dictum set out by kpmsprtd’s wife: “foreigners must know their place and act accordingly.”

    If you were a monkey like Holly, Breen, Daussi, that German bloke or that oranghutan bignoser the Korean professor are able to retain their mythical superiority.

    But having a reputation for academic integrity (and the pretty girls talking about you in the cafeteria instead of the Korean boys) means the sharks were circling with no alumni to threaten payback behind doors.

    To stay and fight it will possibly make more enemies and not necessarily add to knowledge on Korean cultural norms. Every textbook on management culture already has Korean tagged as high context.
    See questions 35, 36 and 40.

    35. Members of which co-culture are MOST likely to show deference to persons of authority, higher status, or greater age?

    A. Asian Americans
    B. African Americans
    C. Euroamericans
    D. men
    E. women

    We can expect the need to show deference to authority and age in China and Japan but in Korea the distortion of Confucianism has led to certain individuals believing that they are genetically intellectually superior this belief is then bolstered by being hagwonned into attendance at a famous institution with some serious money and time from mommy.

    It’s also led to a distortion of real estate prices in Kangnam and wages for the Kangnam hagwons.

  17. […] Gerry-Bevers from Occidentalism was informed by the university for ending his contract because of his active blogging about Dokdo’s history and Korea and Japan territorial debate. The letter said: “I think there is little doubt that the school made this decision because of the Dokdo problem.” Oiwan Lam […]

  18. comment number 18 by: myCoree

    Hi, ponta
    Happy New Year!
    In Japan, they celebrate the ‘solar’ new year. I guess that’s why there are not so many comments.
    It’s 8:40 here in Korea. You’re in the same time zone, aren’t you? I guess that you are an official or researcher of Japan government because I remember you showed me a statistical data accessible only to them.
    I am a little puffed up with your praise. I think it’s you who deserves praise for being fair, objective or sincere. I’m afraid I’m not so good a debater as you are.
    C U.

  19. comment number 19 by: myCoree

    (This is for ponta, not for Gerry)

    1.Dokdo is visible from Uleung Island.




    Old record (Sorry. I can’t gain the original sentence written in Chinese)
    1694 邊例集要 蔚陵島事蹟.
    Jang Han-sang(장한상, Samchok county head) wrote : “There is an island very far in south-eastern direction of Uleung, which is a third of Uleung and not farther than 300 ri(about 120 km?).
    1714 Jo Sok-myong(조석명, Kangwon provincial head) worte in his report : “To the east is a series of islands which comes to contact with Japanese border.”

    2.It is regarded as an Chosun territory.
    1808 : 萬機要覽>軍政編四>海防>東海

    輿地志云 鬱陵于山皆于山國地 于山則倭所謂松島也 (small letters of right side)
    Yeojiji(not remained) says ‘Uleung(do) and Woosan(do) both belong to Woosan county. Woosan(do) means the island which is called in Japan as Matsushima.
    In my opinion, this is the clue how Korea government came to go back to Shilla dynasty and claimed all the island called “Woosan(do)” in Korean old maps are indicating Dok-do. I think their claims are wrong. But, I don’t think they are telling lies.

    增補文獻備考 輿地考
    「輿地志云 鬱陵于山皆于山國地 于山則倭所謂松島也」「松島卽芋山島 爾不聞芋山亦我境乎」
    Yeojiji(not remained) says ‘Uleung(do) and Woosan(do) both belong to Woosan county. Woosan(do) means the island which is called in Japan as Matsushima. The fact that Matsuhima means Woosando is nothing but that Woosan is within our territory.

    This dispute already began in 1906 when Japan informed Korea one year after Simane county included the islet into Japanese territory.

    3.The Taijoukan(太政官) concluded that the islet doesn’t belong to Japan.

    Gerry skipped it though he knew that Dokdo was one of the two because it was an obstacle to his intended conclusion.
    And somebody introduces an argument that it was not the Dokdo(松島). If you see the whole context, you will know that the two island includes Dokdo.
    And the Japanese government says “No comment for the time being”. Can Japanese government keep the no-comment stance until they find the ‘proof’ that it wasn’t Dokdo?

    4.In 1900, Taehan Empire announced that it belongs to Uleung county.
    Taehan Empire announced in her official gazette that that ‘Sok-do’ is under the Uleung county. There are many claims about ‘Sok-do’. Mainly, there are two.
    a.It indicates the Kwaneum-do. (most Japanese claims) It’s because it is a rock island and the second biggest island near Uleung county.
    =>It’s so near to Uleung and it is not regarded as an island and there was not such a name in Lee Kyu-won’s map where
    Gerry tried to find Sok-do but failed and https://www.occidentalism.org/?cat=4
    tell the same claim(Sokouto?) with Japan.
    b.It indicates the Dok-do.
    I agree with this but you will know enough about this claim, so will not write anymore about this. (though I know about some facts of that time contradictory to this claim such as false longitude description, and so on)

    I am not a good debater but a nameless office worker. I may not respond for a long time for my works are getting busier. But, it’s a small manner to say what I think. That’s why I did this.
    Have a good day and a good year.

    ponta, you’ve finally found his university. It’s one of the two.

  20. comment number 20 by: Errol

    For six years the university president made promises. For six years you worked during your vacations. For six years you were in love with the idea that your university was special and different from other universities in Korea.

    Love had blinded you from the domineering behaviour of Korean professors. If these professors were like Robert Laughlinaccording to Confucian norms they would be valued for their age, authority and status.

    Also you Gerry would be valued for your age, authority and status.

    But no.

    As a foreign monkey, even as a gyopo monkey you are as low on the totem pole as a Korean woman. A good slap across the face is is all your reward for six years of service.

  21. comment number 21 by: randomcow

    Gerry – I’m interested in what you have to say about this issue. You might want to jump in sooner rather than later, because the k-blogosphere is having a feeding frenzy at the moment with this news.

    I’m going through a bit of an employment crisis myself at the moment too over here in Japan. Having said that, if you’re looking for options of “what do I do now?” or just someone to talk to about things then feel free to bounce a few ideas off me. If you are considering joining the ratrace here in Japan then I can give you some decent insight and maybe some contacts. For starters, one of the people who helped me study Japanese was Matt himself.

    For everyone else –

    Two points to be noted from the letter. Gerry wasn’t fired – technically his contract was not renewed. There’s a difference. Secondly, the ultimate responsibility seems to lie with the Dean of Academic Affairs or the University President as they were both involved. It’s probably true to say that Gerry was stabbed in the back by his peers and superiors all the way to the guillotine, but there’s no proof at this stage. It may have been a one-man decision for all we know.


  22. comment number 22 by: randomcow

    Ok – I just read the debate over on Marmot’s Hole.


  23. comment number 23 by: chinalawblog

    Unbelievable. Unbelievable. Except, of course, to those who know Korea.

    What a shame.

    I wish you all the best.

  24. comment number 24 by: myCoree

    html test :

    I should have used instead of . I’m bewildered by “strike”. My mistake.

  25. comment number 25 by: Errol

    Gerry, I read on Marmot that after 30 years of loving Korea you’ve had enough. No doubt your kids are grown up so you don’t need to keep your head down to put food on the table.

    Truly the most precious thing in Korea is family. Unfortunately, it often ends in tears.

  26. comment number 26 by: Errol

    Going to the Korean Labour Office may work for Korean employees who aren’t going anywhere in Korea and the Labour Office know that the disgruntled Korean ex-employees will be there tomorrow with a red bandana and possibly a rent-a-crowd and some choice expletives.

    For a foreigner, if they stall long enough your visa expires.

    It’s a financial calculation. Cost of staying in Korea (plus possible to-and-from airfare) vs opportunity cost of alternative sources of income elsewhere.

    In Korea, the university has no duty of care to inform you of your entitlements and neither does the Labour Office.

    Of course, this English Law rather than U.S. Law but the Law in Korea is more akin to the chorus of Steely Dan’s Showbiz Kids.

  27. comment number 27 by: ponta

    Hi mycoree
    A Happy new year!
    I am not government officer , your guess was wrong.
    In Japan in principle any document is accessible to anyone.
    The statistics I show you was based on the article in the Japanese magazine, which in turn based on the statistics at the time which is accessible to anyone.

    Gerry didn’t skip the the part you mentioned, He hasn’t finished writing about Dokdo. Korean society forced him to stop writing about Dokdo.

    I happened to discuss your point at Flyinf Yangbang and Gerry’s blogblog

    1 Ahn first mentioned “Matsuhima” but “Matsushima” he refered to is not Dokdo.
    The later reference to “Matushima”in Korean document came after Ahn’s incident and followed the formula Usan=Matsuhima. It is most likely that “Matsuhima” they referred to is not Dokdo.

    2 As for Dajoukan document, I also argued here and other blogs.
    (Gerry confirmed it here on this blog in a comment section.)
    .BBS #15/20/16
    In a nutshell, “another land” referred to either Dokdo or Gwanundo or Ullenungdo. Japan was confused about the island at this period.
    But as of 1883 Japan confirmed that “Matsushima” “takeshima”Ullenungdo” is not

    3 There is absolutely no Korean document that mentions Dokdo until 1906. And even in 1906 Korean local government didn’t know the exact location of Dokdo. Even after the WWⅡ, Korean geographer located Dokdo outside of Korean territory.

    Korean government asked USA to give Tsushima, Japanese territory,
    and Prangdo, non-existent island, and Dokdo. USA rejected it and suggested to send the issue to ICJ. Korea instead took over Dokdo by force.

    And it is essential
    that Korea show Korea was cognizant of Dokdo. Unfortunately Korea has failed to show it. Instead she banned the site that argue for Japanese claims, and Gerry, who discussed the truth about Dokdo.

    Dokdo is a symbol o Korean ultra-nationalism and Gerry is the victim.

  28. comment number 28 by: ponta

    As for the photos

    However, recent photos that have appeared on the internet were taken with telephoto lenses and were digitally enhanced to give the impression that Tokdo is much closer to Ullungdo than it actually is — misleading Koreans to believe that it can be seen “on a clear day.”link

    Besides, when the debate about Ullenungdo took place between Korea and Japan, Korea claimed that Ulleungdo belonged to Korea because it could be seen from the land/the peninsula. 東国輿地勝覧link

    I really think Korean people should be given the right to know, instead of government banning pro-Japanese side and university expelling dissident expats.

  29. comment number 29 by: Errol

    An interesting link provided by cm over at Marmot’s Hole.

    Pertinent quotes:

    When it came time for her to leave, the village director, identified as Lee Chan-won, refused to pay her final salary. She contacted the police officer, and together with an interpreter, they went to the local Labor Board office. In the car, the officer quizzed her about the school and the activities of her boss.

    The Labor Department was sympathetic but said unfortunately there was nothing they could do to force the director to pay her, at least not before her flight left later in the day.

    Stall, make promises, enlist the aid of government officials at the Labour Office, Police Department and Immigration Office.

    Lee Chan-won waves his hand in that well known downward gesture beloved of the insecure in Korean restaurants and government officials come a runnin’ like waitresses desperately trying to service their big important customer.

    I wonder how Lee Chan-won managed to persuade officials (who are on a government payroll) to do his bidding.

    If the Labour Office officials are as compliant with your employer as Lee Chan-won’s government officials Gerry, you may as well book your flight now.

  30. comment number 30 by: Errol

    Gerry’s story has started an interesting discussion of moral relativity over at Marmot’s Hole. When in Korea, “Foreigners must know their place and act accordingly.”

    Contrasted with the moral absolutism of some commenters at Lost Nomad on the Lee Chan upholds the Dignity of Korean Man story. “Whatever sympathy card the actress may or may not be playing, under no circumstance should that guy have hit her.”

    Is the argument “Foreigners know your place and don’t complain about Korean women being bashed”?

    As covered by Matt in August 2005. “The harsh Australian justice system does not take into account Korean sentiments or culture”.

  31. comment number 31 by: empraptor

    That sucks even more, being fired (or dismissed?) for something outside your work. Time to sue?

  32. comment number 32 by: Errol

    The Korean cultural issue of “keeping things quiet” aka “saving face” to avoid any unplesant consequences such as Gerry’s contract termination non-renewal is mirrored in the case of Lee Chan.

    As Gerry is high profile his case has been heard. So it is with high profile TV stars. Their case is being heard. But for ordinary women in Korea their case is not heard.

    The Korea Herald even going so far as to state, “The incident is rekindling debate on domestic violence which is believed to be rampant in Korea.”

    The Korea Times stating, Many Internet users and experts say that this incident is representative of domestic violence in Korean society.

    Actress Lee told reporters that every time Lee beat her before their marriage, Lee Chan would come back begging her to forgive him. This led her to give in to him and endure other assaults in “the name of love.”

    Cho Yong-beom, a human rights activist, said that Lee’s passive response to physical violence can be interpreted as “Battered Women Syndrome (BWS).”

    “Women with BWS often do not call for help from others despite continued violence, believing that her husband will change. This passive attitude only causes domestic violence to continue. When domestic violence occurs, both partners should seek mental consultation and try to find a solution at an early stage,” said Cho.

    In the name of love? How much misbehaviour in Korea is condoned “in the name of love”?

    There are no consequences for Korean men who lose control. I wonder how much this is linked to Korea’s legal system which didn’t enter the 20th C (let alone the 21st) when OTOH Japan was forced to adopt many western legal concepts and their underlying philosophical concepts such as individual responsibility.

    I’m afraid that there will be more Lee Chans in the future. More Bart Simpson excuses of “I didn’t do it, nobody saw me do it, there’s no way you can prove anything!”

  33. comment number 33 by: Errol

    In case any one considers my previous post to be off-topic the purpose was to provide an additional example of the lack of legal remedies in Korean culture for Korean women and their fellow emasculates the ESL teachers at the bottom (pun intended) of the Korean system.

    They have no power.

    Korean men and pseudo-high status foreigners in Korea are at the top of the totem pole.

    That Korean men support the present hierachical system is understandable after all that’s what their mommies and their seonbae have taught them.

    For the pseudo-high status foreigners what is their excuse? It’s like emigrating to South Africa at the height of apartheid to enjoy a comfortable life. All that can be said of the pseudo high-status foreingers in Korea is that if they’ve read Dostoevsky they sure didn’t understand him.

    Generations of Korean women and ESL teachers and all the others at the bottom of the Korean totem pole will continue to suffer while the pseudo high-status foreigners continue to enjoy the good life of the Korean caste system.

    They stand idly by while Korea’s reputation for academic integrity and respect for women’s rights burns.

    My apologies for misspelling unpleasant above.

  34. comment number 34 by: Errol

    Just read Brendon Carr’s post at Marmot’s Hole. I sympathise with him as he originally came to Korea as a navy man. Once he married a Korean woman there was pressure to return. The same applies to Marmot and his links to North-east Asia.

    For single foreigners there must be other pressures that outweigh the negatives of the STFUingkeeping quiet about academic dishonesty, wife-bashing and female foeticide.

    OTOH As the linked report notes,
    “Lately, not only the numbers of them (transgenders) are increasing but also they are influencing our society increasingly.” Ha Ri-su, LadyB, Lee Joon-gi and at least 1400 others are doing their best to ensure that Korea remains a Paradise for Men, or at least the men without the chop.

  35. comment number 35 by: changer07

    Hello, Gerry.

    I am Park Chung-a, a reporter from The Korea Times. I’ve just read your post above and I am quite shocked to know that this Korean Univeristy fired you due to your view on Dokdo. It looks as if the University does not uphold freedom of expression, which I find to be unacceptable.
    I really would like to know more about this incident in detail and interview you. Please e-mail me as soon as possible.

    [email protected]

    I will wait for your reply. Thanks.

  36. comment number 36 by: changer07

    Dear Gerry

    Hello, I am Park Chung-a , a reporter from The Korea Times.
    I have just read your post above and I am so shocked to know that the Korean university fired you due to your view on Dokdo. It seems that the school does not uphold freedom of expression, which I find to be unacceptable. I would like to know more about this and interview you.
    I have tried to find your e-mail address but can’t find one. So I leave my e-mail address here. Please e-mail me as soon as possible. I will wait for your reply. Thanks.

    [email protected]

  37. comment number 37 by: ponta

    It seems that the school does not uphold freedom of expression, which I find to be unacceptable.

    Korea seems self-corrective!!

  38. comment number 38 by: HanComplex

    Hi Park Chung-a,

    I’m glad to hear of your concern for Gerry. It’s indeed an unfair treatment he received from the university. That’s a good sign someone from the Korean media seems to be interested in this incident.

    Incidentally is your English name Chris? Just judging from your email address. I was wondering since one of the articles a Korea Times columnist by your name wrote lists her work email as Michelle at the end.


  39. comment number 39 by: lirelou

    Gerry, been where you have and did that once. Ouch, it hurt! Only in my case it was a very well paying part-time job. At that time, I was attending law school on the GI bill, and had a wife and child to support. I took up some of the slack in my loss of revenues by teaching ESL at Berlitz at nights, which dropped my GPA a bit.

    Anyway, were I a professional teacher, as you are, I would look at Taiwan or Vietnam. In Taiwan, I am told that a year’s contract is better, as the taxes for a six month stint are higher. It is certainly a very interesting country. Vietnam might not pay as well, but I believe that you would find it comfortable. Easier, because you understand the ground rules going in. Never state an opinion on Vietnam that runs counter to the government (read Party) position. (You cannot open any internet sites that publish anything that counters the official history.)

    Yet, English teaching is going gangbusters in Vietnam, and the real attraction is Vietnam is the Vietnamese themselves. Hanoi would probably be more to your liking (cool in winter, and relatively close to China), Danang has a lot of Korean investment (Mrs. Bevers might be able to teach Korean), and Saigon is the economic powerhouse of the country no matter how hard the Party tries to castrate it. (and yes, the majority of Vietnamese now refer to it as Saigon, unless some Party busybody is around to correct them.) Nha Trang is great, but probably too small, although they do have a Technical University there that would welcome a legitimate English teacher.

    Just food for thought. Look forward to seeing where you go from here. I wish you the very best of luck.

  40. comment number 40 by: claire

    aww poor teacher gerry.
    at least now you have a public excuse to be blantantly bitter. Like everyone else, I strongly propose you move to Japan where I’m sure you won’t face any kind of discrimination.

  41. comment number 41 by: Errol

    Gerry has survived Korea for thirty years and seen presidents come and go. At the end of this year we’ll see the end of the egregious Noh. After Noh’s ridiculous reign free speech will once again return to the ROK.

    Korean War casualties

    ROK 415 000 Killed 105 785 Wounded

    USA 33 629 Killed 105 785 Wounded

    Australia 339 Killed 1216 Wounded

    The men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice to bring peace, prosperity and democracy to the Korean Peninsula allow the claire’s of Korea to speak freely if intemperately.

    Those who do not believe in the ideals of free speech in academia and stifle scientific inquiry are doomed to produce
    damp squibs.

  42. comment number 42 by: Errol

    My apologies to the brave veterans of the ROK military and their descendants, that should be 429 000 wounded for the ROK.

  43. comment number 43 by: Two Cents

    I saw the comments at the related post at Marmot’s and had to laugh. I guess wkj thinks Gerry is “victim” of Matt and should be offered an apology and compensation. Is that a typical Korean way of thinking? Although I was a bit surprised that Gerry was not expecting this outcome, as we all probably did, I think that it had to do with the extent of trust he had in the Koreans. After all, you don’t continue living in a country full of people you can’t love or respect for 30 years. Maybe the Koreans have become more nationalistic and intolerant during these few years than Gerry had thought. Too bad many Koreans think he is doing it out of some bitterness for Korea. People who continue blindly praising you are never your true friends.

  44. […] Well, I’m not going to assume anything about the netizens, but as for the rest of the comment, if Gerry Bevers could be disciplined for tarnishing the reputation of his school by posting controversial opinions about the Dokdo islets on a blog, one naturally might wonder what Rhie’s employer—Duksung Women’s University—should think if his comic book were to come under greater attack. It would be quite unfortunate if a situation were to develop where one could fairly criticize Korea for being a place where publishing blatantly anti-Semitic rhetoric in a popular student comic book series is OK but posting unpopular views about Dokdo on a blog puts you beyond the pale. Related Posts (Maybe)What’s next? Blood libel? […]

  45. […] Generally, this blog strives to avoid commentary on domestic Korean issues due to the experiences of Occidentalism’s Gerry Bevers.  However, his Western twin, Matt, scores these funny YouTube vids about Japanese views on South Korean editorializing on Japan (in the sense that watching taxis and buses duel for a square foot of curb is funny) posted on Japan Probe.  I couldn’t help but sift through a few more of oniazuma’s vid collection, and found this one: […]