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Wartime Forestry and the “Low Temperature Lifestyle” in Late Colonial Korea, 1937–1945

  • David Fedman (a1)
Abstract

This article examines the emergence in colonial Korea of a command economy for forestry products following the outbreak of the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937–45). It does so, first, by tracing the policy mechanisms through which the colonial state commandeered forest products, especially timber, firewood, and charcoal. Second, through an analysis of the wartime promotion of a “low temperature lifestyle,” it offers a thumbnail sketch of the lived experiences and corporeal consequences of state-led efforts to rationalize fuel consumption. Considered together, these lines of analysis offer insight into not only the ecological implications of war on the Korean landscape, but also the bodily privations that defined everyday life under total war—what might be called the “slow violence” of caloric control.

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