Article ID: CBB799372141

'Difficult Heritage' & Selective Elision: The Seoul Power Plant (April 2021)


DiMoia, John P. (Author)

Technology and Culture
Volume: 62
Issue: 2
Pages: 561-572

Publication Date: April 2021
Edition Details: Public History section
Language: English

In the early twenty-first century, postcolonial cities such as Seoul possess built structures and support infrastructure (electric power, gas, and water) dating to earlier periods of history. The challenge of doing public history lies in approaching the heritage issues associated with how these structures may be retained. In the Korean case, using the Dangin-ri power plant site as a case study, this article illustrates how national planners, developers, and city officials have elided and emphasized certain aspects of history embedded within these structures. Originally a Japanese-built coal plant, later augmented with American and Korean construction, Dangin-ri continues to supply power to Seoul through new underground construction. At the same time, KOMIPO, the power company, has altered the site's features to include a public exhibition space, along with a wetlands and nature area. The "difficult heritage" associated with the Japanese colonial period (1910–1945) appears less conspicuous within this revised scheme, while also exhibiting the changes that came to the city following the heavy industrialization campaigns of the 1970s.

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Authors & Contributors
Rome, Adam
Amritha Ballal
Af Geijerstam, Jan
Bergman, Yoel
Kathleen Franz
Catherine Gudis
American Heritage of Invention and Technology
Technology and Culture
Business History Review
East Asian Science, Technology and Society: An International Journal
Icon: Journal of the International Committee for the History of Technology
Journal of American History
The University of Chicago Press
University of California Press
Chemical Industry
Public history
Inventors and invention
Kerr, Roy Patrick
Midgley, Jr., Thomas
Kettering, Charles Franklin
Kwolek, Stephanie
Nobel, Alfred Bernhard
Time Periods
20th century
21st century
19th century
20th century, late
United States
Seoul, Korea
East Asia
Du Pont Company

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