Ganghwa Treaty of 1876 (강화도 조약)
As Perry’s Opening of Japan and Kanagawa Treaty of 1842 significantly influenced the development of Japan into an industrialized, modern imperialist nation, Ganghwa Treaty of 1876 had remarkable impacts on people and society of Korea. Similar to Perry’s visits to Japan in the years during 1842 to 1844, Ganghwa treaty is considered as an unjustly forced negotiation between a strong militaristic nation and a weak neighbor. Furthermore, this treaty merely marked the beginning of a long period of imperialist control of Korea by Japan that followed the decades after. Provided is a picture of a record of Ganghwa Treaty, written in Japanese.
Works of Isabella Bird and Alexis Dudden will be studied throughout my paper to illustrate various interactions between Japan and Korea during the late 1800s and the early 1900s, and to further portray contextual conditions in Korea during the time period. In “Japan’s Colonization of Korea: Discourse and Power,” a historian specializing in modern Japan and modern Korea, Alexis Dudden demonstrates a number of events during Japan’s attempt and success in colonizing Korea and placing it under its imperialist rule. In “Korea and Her Neighbors,” Isabella Bird shares her first-hand travel account in Korea. Bird’s account proves to be a great primary source of the time period as it provides valuable insights into the social and political conditions of Korea during the time period leading to Japan’s imperialist rule.