The political life of Ha Ki-Rak, a Korean anarcho-pacifist academic, writer, and philosopher, began in 1929, when he participated in student demonstrations in Kwangju (Gwangju Uprising), predating the mass student demonstrations in 1980 by 51 years. While a student at Waseda University in Japan, during the Japanese occupation of Korea, Ha Ki-Rak was an anti-imperialist activist and joined the Tokyo Dong-hung No-dong Dong-meng (workers’ League of Tokyo). After the liberation from Japan in 1945, he helped form the first Korean anarchist organization, Ja-yoo sa-hoi kun-sul-ja yun-meng (League of Free Social Constructors), authoring its founding declaration and political program.

In 1946, when Korean anarchists returning from exile held a meeting at Kum-gang-sa in Kyung-sang Province, Ha Ki-Rak edited their journal, Ja-yu yun-hap (Libertarian Federation), and afterwards participated in the unified organization they decided to create in order to rebuild the country, the Dok-lip no-nong-dang (Independent Workers and Farmers Party). In 1972, he founded the Han-kuk ja-ju-in yun-meng (Korean Anarchist Federation) in Seoul. In 1978, he published A History of the Korean Anarchist Movement. In 1995, two years before his death, he was a leading organizer of the World Peace Conference in Seoul.

References and Suggested Readings

Ha Ki-Rak. (1968) The Modern Spirit and Spiritual Situation Today. Koreana Quarterly 10, 1.

Ha Ki-Rak. (1985) A History of the Korean Anarchist Movement. Taegu: Anarchist Publishing Committee.

Kahn-chae, N., & Katiaficas, G. (Eds.) (2007) South Korean Democracy: Legacy of the Gwangju Uprising. London: Routledge.

Maciel, A. S. et al. (1986) Another Venice: Images of an International Anarchist Meeting, Venezia 1984. New York: Black Rose Books.

Publication Committee of Korean Anarchist History. (1978) Han-kuk mu-jung-bu ju-y un-dong-sa [The History of the Korean Anarchist Movement]. Seoul: Hyung-Sul Publishing Company.