Chinese Documentaries and the Korean War

International Journal of Korean History. 2014;19(2):137-168 DOI 10.22372/ijkh.2014.19.2.137


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Journal Title: International Journal of Korean History

ISSN: 1598-2041 (Print); 2508-5921 (Online)

Publisher: Korea University, Center for Korean History

LCC Subject Category: History (General) and history of Europe: History (General)

Country of publisher: Korea, Republic of

Language of fulltext: English

Full-text formats available: PDF, HTML, ePUB, XML



Kezhi Sun (Professor, Department of History, Fudan University)

Dan Xu (Ph. D candidate, Department of History, Fudan University)


Double blind peer review

Editorial Board

Instructions for authors

Time From Submission to Publication: 12 weeks


Abstract | Full Text

The Korean War composed an important part of the history of the new China after its establishment. After the opening and the reform phase, a number of documentaries on the Korean War were produced in China, based on footages and video images filmed earlier. Documentaries produced during this time linked newly discovered information based on the video images with the existing information, and therefore they analyzed and explained issues related to the war in detail. Certain documentaries reinterpreted issues related to the war based on the existing video images by adding the analysis of a researcher on the topic, and others included reenactments and reproductions of the war based on the memories of survivors. Likewise, documentaries about the Korean War that have been produced after the war can be seen as results of the reflection on or reinterpretation of the Korean War. Compared to the documentaries made in the initial phase, these documentaries contained noticeably less political and ideological colors, and focused more on factors for logical and critical thinking. As a result, the documentaries made people reconsider the nature of the war, including the cause of the war and which side actually started the war, and distinctly transformed the perspectives on these issues.