Louisiana State University

The Dictatorship of Capital: Urban Redevelopment and the Democracy of the Have-Nots in Post-Authoritarian South Korea

Hae Yeon Choo studies gender, intersectionality, citizenship, and urban sociology. Her current book project examines social activism in contemporary South Korea as sites of emergent critical social theory and new political imagination. In this talk, she examines the relationship between democratic citizenship, capitalist profit-making, and violence. In particular, she focuses on an evictee protest against urban redevelopment in Yongsan, South Korea in 2009, resulting in a fatal police raid. Based on the parliamentary hearings, court documents, and oral history from protesters in the aftermath of the Yongsan disaster, Hae Yeon Choo delves into how evictee protesters theorize the conditions of displacement and exclusion from urban space and citizenship as “the dictatorship of capital.” Situating the Yongsan Disaster in the socio-political context of South Korea, this talk sheds light on the limits of formal democracy and the vision of radical democracy based on the politics of “the have-nots” in post-authoritarian South Korea.

Friday, April 16, 2021 at 2:30pm to 4:00pm

Virtual Event
Event Type

Meetings & Conferences

Target Audience

Students, Faculty





Department of Sociology


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