June 10th Movement

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June 10th Movement
Official name June 10th Movement
Yuksip Movement
Also called Manse Demonstrations
Observed by Under-People of Great Korean Empire that under Great Japanese Empire's ruling.
Type National
Significance Marks one of the first public displays of Korean resistance during the Japanese occupation of Korea organized by students
Date June 10, 1926
June 10th Movement
Hangul
Revised Romanization Yuk Sip Undong
McCune–Reischauer Yuk Sip Undong

The June 10th Movement or Yuk-ship Undong ("Six-10 Movement" or "June Tenth Movement"), ko:6.10 만세운동 was one of the earliest public displays of Korean resistance during the occupation of the Korean Empire by Japan. The name refers to an event that occurred on June 10th 1926. It is sometimes referred to as the Manse Demonstrations (Hangul: 만세운동; hanja: 萬歲運動; RR: Manse Undong).

Background[edit]

The March 1st movement was a big step forward for Korean independence. Japan had largely suppressed the independence movement and it had largely gone unnoticed by world powers. Throughout the early 1920s The Korean provincial government in Shanghai was having problems with infighting. In 1921 the Korean government was unable to secure funds from Russia, and in 1925 Syngman Rhee (이승만) was voted out of the government. These two incidents lead to an even more instability and division among an already fractured and dysfunctional government. In Manchu in 1920 Japan defeated and pushed back Russia far inland, then in 1921, in a deal to avoid further attacks from Japan, Russia executed all of the Korean freedom fighters that were living in in modern day Svobodny, Russia. By 1922 things had become even more desperate for Korea than before. However, during these years that Korea had struggles outside of Korea, inside of Korea there was increased excitement fervor for political movements but the excitement was largely suppressed during the Japanese cultural rule period. .

Events in Korea[edit]

After the March 1st Movement of 1919, Korea had several national independence movements that were unplanned and unsuccessful. The 1920s were a time that the students began to have more of an influential role in these movements and in 1926, for the first time since 1919 there was another planned national independence movement. In 1919 Sunjong had only been king for 4 years when Japan took over with military rule, then on April 26th 1926, Sunjong died and all of Korea mourned. Japan remembered how much the March 1st movement had affected the country after Gojong had died. The Japanese government did not want another national movement and so, after Sunjeong died, the Japanese began to more closely watch the Koreans for any talk of movement. In addition to the more strict monitoring of the Koreans, the Japanese government also stationed a total of over 7,000 troops in Gyeong-song, and also brought navy ships to the ports of Incheon and Pusan. There were three different parts to the June 10th movement. The first part was centered around the socialist Gwon O-seol. Gwon O-seol printed a large sum of counterfeit Chinese money using a newspaper printer and the Japanese government discovered the printing press and destroyed it. The second part of the national independence movement was the highly educated university students. On the day of Sunjong’s death over 800 students from the Joseon Student Science Association gathered in Seoul under the guise of a student picnic and decided to use the death of Sunjong for a reason to have an independence movement, just like the March 1st movement had used the death of king kojong. Three weeks later at a Korean university in Seoul, about 400 student met at finalized the decision to have the public protest on the same day as King Sunjong’s funeral. The leaders were chosen and the preparation details were sorted out. The final preparations went smoothly despite the threat of being discovered by the Japanese who were, as time grew closer to the day of the funeral, becoming increasingly watchful. Flags, statements and flyers were made, and after 10,000 flyers were printed, all the students took them back to their respective schools and began dispersing them amongst the student population. The third and most surprising part of the June 10th movement was the participation of middle school students. A handful of middle school students, after hearing of the death of Sunjong, wanted to get involved and come and participated in the demonstrations. After all the declarations had be dispersed to every student involved, the day of SunJong’s funeral came and at 8:30am 240,000 students including about 300 middle school students, lined the streets and paraded through downtown Seoul scattering the independence proclamations and shouting “ 10,000 years of independent Joseon! (조선독립만세)” Throughout the day many students joined the movement as it went to different areas of the city.

Aftermath[edit]

Since there was a movement similar to the March 1st movement, the military was deployed to suppress the protestors. 210 students were caught in Seoul and 1000 total students were detained in protests around the country. Most of the students were shortly released, however 106 students were investigated and 53 were imprisoned. Later that month on June 25th, seven students were prosecuted and sent to trial for the illegal production and distribution of documents. The seven students were sentenced to various prison terms ranging from one to three years.

Significance[edit]

The June 10th movement of 1926 was the first street demonstration for national independence that had been solely planned and carried out by students. The movement of June 10th unified the students and created a fraternity that would continue to plan and carry out anti-Japanese movements. The 1926 movement provided to life for the intendance movement in Korea that had grown stagnant, and help inspire and sustain the sentiment for until the next movement in 1929 in Gwangju.[1]

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