Willard D. Keim

Volume and Number

Studies on East Asia, Volume 14



Download Full Text (69.0 MB)

Download Front Matter (1.0 MB)

Download Chapter 1. Introduction: The Historical and Political Contest of the Korean Peasant (5.3 MB)

Download Chapter 2. Technical Considerations, Hypotheses, and Descriptive Attitudes of the Korean Peasants (5.6 MB)

Download Chapter 3. The Attitudes and the Interrelationships of Attitudes and Attributes of Korean Peasants (5.5 MB)

Download Chapter 4. I Want My Son to be a Peasant: The Impact of Peasant Attitudes Toward Farming on Innovation and Village Improvement (1.5 MB)

Download Chapter 5. Two Korean Villages (5.6 MB)

Download Chapter 6. Conclusion: The Ambiguous Legacy (1.3 MB)

Download Back Matter (7.4 MB)

Publication Date


Managing Editor

Henry G. Schwarz


Center for East Asian Studies, Western Washington University


The Korean Peasant at the Crossroads, by Willard D. Keim: Since the advent of written history at least some four millennia ago, the world has been to a large degree a peasant world. There are still nations among those newly independent since World War II with 80 percent of their populations living in the countryside. And it has not been so many decades ago that the major nations of Europe were composed predominantly of a peasantry and its concomitant technology. The United States crossed the rural-urban divide of 50 percent living in rural areas in about 1920, Italy in the 1940s, and Korea in the early 1970s. Were it not for the industrial revolution, which originated in Europe and has extended its impact around the globe, the world would still consist of urban centers surrounded by vast oceans of countryside, villages, and peasant-tillers. It is certainly no news to persons living in the United States, where less than ten percent of the population is at present actively engaged in raising the crops needed to feed its expanded population, and to some of the rest of the world that the age of the peasant, the even pace of life in semi-isolated villages, is gone forever.

Publisher (Digital Object)

Resources made available by the Special Collections, Heritage Resources and Western Libraries, Western Washington University.



Geographic Coverage



East Asian Languages and Societies


Korean peasants, Rural-urban divide

Document Type


Subject-Topical (LCSH)

Villages--Korea; Social surveys--Korea; Farmers--Korea--Attitudes; Peasants--Korea


Copyright 1979 the Center for East Asian Studies, Western Washington University





The Korean Peasant at the Crossroads: A Study in Attitudes