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Dreamscapes of ModernitySociotechnical Imaginaries and the Fabrication of Power$
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Sheila Jasanoff and Sang-Hyun Kim

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780226276496

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226276663.001.0001

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Social Movements and Contested Sociotechnical Imaginaries in South Korea

Social Movements and Contested Sociotechnical Imaginaries in South Korea

Chapter:
(p.152) Seven Social Movements and Contested Sociotechnical Imaginaries in South Korea
Source:
Dreamscapes of Modernity
Author(s):

Sang-Hyun Kim

Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226276663.003.0007

By analyzing public disputes over nuclear power, biotechnology and the import of U.S. beef, this chapter explores the South Korean politics of science and technology in a wider social and political context. The chapter first examines the ways in which South Korea's visions of science and technology became interwoven with projects of nation-building and the resulting sociotechnical imaginary shaped the formulation of the state's policies in each case. It then shows that, in contesting these initiatives, social movement activists not only challenged the official visions of development and national interests, but also questioned the proper role and place of science and technology in society. While activist groups were occasionally able to disrupt the state's initial plans, however, it proved very difficult for them to dethrone the prevailing sociotechnical imaginary that viewed science and technology primarily as a form of power and as instruments to serve state-led national development.

Keywords:   sociotechnical imaginary, politics, science and technology, social movements, developmentalism, nationalism, South Korea, nuclear power, biotechnology, BSE

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