Writer: 이건범(Geonbeom Lee)
<Language is a human right> introduces a new prospect of language as a basic human right. In a nutshell, the author explains that ‘language that can be understood by anyone’ is the key to assuring the dignity of all. The author further expresses regret that we have never considered the fact that language is also entwined with humanity and social context because the language has always only been talked about in terms of the norms of language and grammar. Thus, the author proposes that we think out of the box and approach language as though language belongs to the people.
In a radio interview at YTN, the author mentions that the quality of life can be enhanced just by using plain language. Quality of life refers to being guaranteed the rights given to one as a human and also a citizen of a nation. Only when plain language is used will the right to life and safety of people be guaranteed. What we call the ‘heart-shocking device’ today was once referred to as the ‘Automated External Defibrillator’. The Ministry of Public Administration and Security made such changes because changing the term to ‘heart-shocking device’ would identify the function of the device without having to cause any confusion. Also, many complaints were filed in because the emergency call button was written in English and not in Korean. In addition, the newly used term ‘Blind recruitment’ has also stirred up some dispute. Not only is the word ‘Blind’ often coined with the disabled, it also does not explain the true purpose of the term. In order to clear up the dispute, the terms ‘equality recruitment’ or ‘Masked information recruitment’ should be used in place.
Language as a basic right can also be applied to politics. Looking back in history, King Sejong invented Hangeul as a tool for his subjects to be able to voice out their opinions and thereby contribute to the development of society. However, the ‘language of politics’ is standing in the way of political participation in the present day. The author affirms that language sways political participation. Politics determines the direction and speed of our lives and therefore if the language is an obstacle to political participation, out fate, is left in the hands of others. The times when the elected member of Congress decided our fate has passed and today, no one is left out in forming public opinion. The candlelight vigil of former president Park Geun-Hye is one example.
By the end of the book, the author mentions that ‘Hangeul is a right’. However, contradictory to this, loanwords have always been a controversy in Korean society. No one has ever questioned the fact that there are loanwords included in the Korean dictionary and that there are no standards in differentiating a loanword and a foreign language. The National Language Deliberation Council is responsible for the review of loanwords but they have not since the 1990s and this is the root cause of the numerous loanwords in the Korean dictionary. Thus, we have all the reason to think that the government is not concerned about preserving the dignity of our language.
Not protecting Hangeul is giving up identity. In the author’s closing remarks, he suggests several solutions to start loving Hangeul. For one, government legal documents and political terms should restrain from using loanwords. Only with the law can be easily comprehended by people who are not familiar with the law. As a whole, education on the Korean language should be tailored to meet the needs of the people, and that is to love the Korean language.
Written by Cho Hye Min, Intern of Human Asia
Director: Terry George
Cast: Don Cheadle, Sophie Okonedo, Joaquin Phoenix
‘Hotel Rwanda’ is a movie which depicts tensions between the Hutu and the Tutsi people leading to a civil war in Rwanda and explores genocide, political corruption and the repercussions of violence. This setting began as the Hutu’s conflict towards the Tutsi which had been undercovered before finally exploded when Hutu’s president was assassinated and began to slaughter the Tutsi regardless of age. The main character, Paul, helps to flee the Hutu and Tutsi to a ‘Mill Collins’ hotel, showing the process of refuge and protection.
In the movie, the Hutu and Tutsi constantly differentiate and typify each other. Continuing in Hutu Power, the Tutsi stir up people to wage war by pointing out the Hutu as the aggressor who took away territory and attacks them.
However, as the Hutu and Tutsi in the movie already realize, their national differences or distinctions are so artificial and arbitrary. The reporters who had been dispatched from outside to report heard how the Hutu and Tutsi are distinguished by their appearances that the Tutsi are tall and have relatively large nose area thus they were selected as ruling forces during the occupation of Belgium. Thus the reporters asked two women sitting at the restaurant bar about it but there seemed to be no difference. In addition, the Tutsi and Hutu can demonstrate how arbitrarily their differences are made in that they can prove their own national identity only by means of a ‘written’ registration granted to each individual.
Tatiana: “Why are they arresting Victor? He has no political beliefs. He’s just a gardener.”
Paul: “Who won’t know about it? Someone who hated him would have driven him to be a traitor. This is an everyday thing.”
In the scene where the neighbors are being dragged out, the dialogue between Tatiana and Paul shows how many of these ethnic groups are historically composed, and that they are neither essential nor fundamental.
This relatively and recently created ethnicity is embodied in people as if it were a tradition or a natural factor that produced the difference between the Hutu and Tutsi for a long time, silencing people to avoid questioning the purposeless struggle that is happening now. In other words, the racism where colonialism is derived from has created an endless zero-sum game where one side becomes an abuser and the other becomes a victim.
“How does west being drawn?”
Isn’t the multiple evaluation of the west by Rwanda people are shown in this movie? All the contrary evaluations against the West are in this movie, and the West is the first provider of this cause, and at the same time, in Rwandan civil war, together with the Rwanda people, they are able to make their own mistakes with first aid, monasteries.
Sometimes they show regrets of Hutu’s violence, and they also show humans such as shedding a tear for failing to save their children. However, they attempted to include multiple evaluations at the same time, but the negative views are obvious. The movie portrays the negative aspects of ‘the West’ as ‘irresponsible’. It entices a western reporter who brought Tutsi woman to the hotel in order to feel the fun for a while but left her with some money after he felt insecure staying there, NGO members who rescued many children but still consider it as “Rwanda’s work”, and religious people who waved the flag with their children came not to stay with children in a safe place, but simply to ride their buses. The UN is undoubtedly irresponsible and shows that they do not keep their promises.
The movie shows the fact that the people of the West who have acted as if they are ‘ours’ are looking at hotels that are ‘inevitable to stay’ on a bus that can’t ‘move in the rain(war)’ and the way West uses Rwanda’s pain as one way of their lives. The driving force behind the growth of the Western world in the first place was the exploitation of other countries and the repetition of the idiom ‘killing the dog after hunting is over’. While watching the movie, I was able to ponder once again who was responsible for the cruel reality of the war and the damage caused by it.
The existence of a person as a whole implies the formation of meaning through recognition in the mutual relationship with others. And the mutual relationship can be made by one person having a long conversation with another person, living together and trying to communicate continuously. The Hutu and Tutsi live within the same local boundaries but have never had the opportunity to hear from or speak to each other. The scene where while withdrawing his troops, General Oliver tells Paul that “you are nothing in our eyes” shows that the Western power superficially points out humanitarianism, but they put them in the frame of a (poor) black man and not try to communicate. The tragedy in Rwanda is not just an inhuman massacre of the Hutu and Tutsi inhabitants of the region, but rather our problem as the world nations which injected western imperialism and who didn’t care about it consistently long before the tragedy began.
Written by Shon Su Ji, Intern of Human Asia
|김혁 (1)||김혁 (2)||김현호||김형근||남지수||류성호||류호근||문대원||박범진||박정훈|
(주)노아종합상사, (주)부원공업, (주)파라다이스, (주)대덕휴비즈, (주)디자인210, 트리코인베스트먼트(주), 의료법인 오해븐의료재단, 재단법인 정암, 고고밴, 한국외국인학교, 일동제약 CSR, 텔로스컨설팅그룹, 상명여중 휴먼라이트, 압구정중 Right Helpers, 청심국제중 CS 휴라시아, Korea International Human Rights, 신동 휴라시아, 숭의 휴라시아, 한성 휴라시아, 아시아퍼시픽국제학교 휴먼아시아피스, 대원휴라시아, HAHR, 서울과학고 휴라시아, 하나 휴라시아, S.C.C.W, S.A.W. 세화고등학교 휴라시아, 원촌중학교