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Space and Location in the Circulation of Knowledge (1400–1800)

Korea and Beyond

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Edited By Marion Eggert, Felix Siegmund and Dennis Würthner

In response to the recent surge of interest in studying epistemic transfers and changes, this volume assembles an interdisciplinary range of articles that look at the production, consumption and dissemination of knowledge in East Asia, centering on Korea, under the paradigm of knowledge circulation. Applying this heuristic tool offers new perspectives on pre-modern Korea and beyond. It allows for flexibility of scale and thus facilitates the identification of shared processes of appropriation, digestion and re-distribution of ideas, regardless of whether the exchanges take place between states and nations, between social groups, or even between individuals. The articles in this volume stress the spatial and social aspects of the process of knowledge circulation in particular: the role of location and of social networks in the production, evaluation and dissemination of new knowledge.
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The Circulation of Military Knowledge and its Localization. Some Notes on the Case of Military Techniques in Late Chosŏn Korea – Felix Siegmund

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The Circulation of Military Knowledge and its Localization. Some Notes on the Case of Military Techniques in Late Chosŏn Korea

Felix Siegmund

In recent years we have come to think of East Asian military history at large. Some of the main figures in the study of warfare in East Asia holding positions in World History and similar broad subjects are one factor. The other one is an increasing need to show that what we do matters.1 The standard answer at the moment seems to be that military history is somehow interwoven with World History and that this is proof of its relevance. Looking at the direction that publications have taken in the last decade, the success of this approach in getting publications into prestigious publishing houses cannot be denied.

But there is also a more concrete dimension to military history – to any kind of history in fact – which is about the workings of processes at lower levels and of a smaller scale. It is these small-scale dynamics that inform the bigger picture and that represent a step that we should not skip so easily.2 What I want to do here is to show that local and regional settings, networks if you will, play an important role in the spread of military knowledge and should be considered in both military and general history.3 There is a need for more recognition of small-scale dynamics which inform the big picture. Another reason why...

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