In This Review

Korea and Its Future: Unification and the Unfinished War
Korea and Its Future: Unification and the Unfinished War
By Roy Richard Grinker
St. Martin's Press, 1998, 316 pp

A professional anthropologist and Korea specialist, Grinker argues that South Koreans should reconsider their approach to their northern neighbor. Instead of clinging to what he terms the myth of Korean homogeneity, the author believes South Koreans should develop a more tolerant approach and recognize the differences between the two states while striving toward a "melting pot." Unfortunately, the book is marred by the dense, tangled prose of a professional anthropologist. On a more substantive level, Grinker's single-minded approach to the Korean division as a "cultural" problem ignores basic realities: deep mutual distrust; profound ideological, political, and economic differences; and the long North Korean effort to undermine the South Korean regime.