In an interesting and laudable development, South Korea has decided to start teaching units in its elementary schools about mixed-race Koreans and overseas adoptees.
“Children in multi-cultural families get disadvantages and unfair treatment due to their accent, physical appearance and culture upbringing. We need to teach children that discrimination against or contempt of biracial people or overseas adoptees is wrong and that we can get along with children from an international marriage,” said Kwon Ki-won, head supervisor of the ministry’s curriculum policy division.
As the article points out, the number of biracial students in Korea is still incredibly small — well under 10,000 — but this will be a growing issue as Koreans continue to move abroad while maintaining links with home, and as interracial marriages continue to increase. I don’t think Korea will ever be an immigrant society like America, nor should it be, but the Koreans will have to come to an understanding of what it means to be Korean that is not wholly centered on race and native understanding of the language. This is a step in the right direction.