The Exit of Park Geun-hye: The Protests in Video

December 12, 2016 7:00 AM

Thanks to Kathy Moon for messaging out a great Vimeo clip of the South Korean protests that played a central role leading up to Park Geun-hye’s impeachment. Although the video has a feel-good quality—neatly edited to Coldplay’s When I Ruled the World—it captures quite well the mood of the demonstrations (I was in Seoul for the November 12 protest, which was estimated at over 1 million). An interesting tidbit about Coldplay: tickets for their April 2017 Seoul concert sold out almost instantaneously on November 25. A particular feature of the protest movement writ large were diverse interest groups that formed to protest Park; this even included Coldplay ticket-holders who formed their own protest subgroup.

That mood managed to combine a certain festiveness with both order and a deep determination, bringing out whole families. Only visible on a closer look: the organizational role played by unions—note the tight legions of workers in similarly-colored vests—and the mayor of Seoul, Park Won-soon. Park had a key role in staging—in a quite literal sense—the spectacle; large stages, top entertainers, a high-quality sound system and even projection screens gave the protests coherence. Now, the hard part.

For details on how we got here, see:

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