National Curriculum Keywords: TBC
Seon Young Lee
PhD student, Department of Geography, King's College London.
Seon Young is a third year PhD student, Her research is about new build gentrification and anti-gentrification movements in Seoul. She focuses on why citizens continue to be vulnerable to spatial development processes and how to build and improve their rights.
RGS 21st Century Challenges: Adapting to an urban future
Research profile here
More than half of South Koreans are living in high-rise tower blocks of flats. Unlike the British, many Koreans dream of buying a flat, especially a brand new flat, not a house with a garden. South Korea is called ‘apartment republic’. Over the last half of century tower blocks have become the dominant housing style instead of our traditional housing ‘Hanok’. As flats have become increasingly common they have been getting much higher and more luxurious. Now, the high-rise flats (30-40 story) are named ‘Lotte Castle’ or ‘Tower Palace’ and have become a symbol of the wealthy. Flats have become the most important factor in defining the characteristics of each neighbourhood and individual. The evolution of tower blocks of flats has changed Koreans, their relationships and the Korean cities and society. It has produced and strengthened the socio-politic, economic and spatial inequality in Korea. This story is about the interaction between flats and Koreans.
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