The Small Welfare State
Show Less

The Small Welfare State

Rethinking Welfare in the US, Japan, and South Korea

Edited by Jae-jin Yang

In a period of rapid change for welfare states around the world, this insightful book offers a comparative study of three historically small welfare states: the US, Japan, and South Korea. Featuring contributions from international distinguished scholars, this book looks beyond the larger European welfare states to unpack the many common political and institutional characteristics that have constrained welfare state development in industrialized democracies.
Buy Book in Print
Show Summary Details
You do not have access to this content

Chapter 7: Why welfare state building is of secondary importance to leftists in Japan and South Korea

Soon-Mee Kwon


Traditionally, welfare state research has claimed that leftists and their capacity to mobilize power resources are crucial factors in welfare state building. However, this chapter points out that such an approach may rest on the West-biased assumption that they are socio-economic reformists. Within the context of the Cold War, mainstream leftists in Japan and South Korea tended to place more of a priority on pacifism and nationalistic issues such as reunification than socio-economic issues. Furthermore, they adhered to radical ideologies such as Marxism–Leninism and Juche, making them hesitant to work towards the construction of a welfare state. Accordingly, the power resources of leftist groups in Japan and Korea have not been used for welfare state building.

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.

Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Further information

or login to access all content.