China and Inner Asia
Organized Panel Session
This panel explores the unique nature of Qing-Chosŏn relations by focusing on Manchu control over the Korean border and the people of Korea. First, it discusses how Qing emperors achieved dominance over the Korean people, both within China and extending into Korea. Qing imperial edicts judged and punished such diverse groups as Korean imperial servants working in Beijing, ginseng poachers in the Tumen River region, and followers of unorthodox foreign religions living inside Korea. Second, this panel proposes that this strong imposition of Qing authority on the Korean border and its subjects reflects the Manchu identity of the Qing empire. The distinctive Manchu banner system efficiently incorporated diverse people from different ethnic backgrounds, including Koreans, into Qing society. Qing border management, which focused on protecting Manchuria, initially defined legal practice over Korean trespassers and later shaped laws to regulate the spread of foreign religion into Korea.
The three papers in this panel discuss the ways that Qing-Chosŏn relations were built and transformed through constant movements of people and ideas across their shared borders. Huang introduces a Korean bondservant family in the Manchu banner, a story which shows how Korean trans-frontiersmen contributed to the formation of the Qing empire. Kim explores two border trespassing cases during the Qianlong period, addressing the Manchus’ great interest in their sacred birthplace of Manchuria. Finally, Lee discusses the anti-Catholic movement in nineteenth-century Korea, which was hugely influenced by Qing legal codes on border trespassing.