Thursday, December 18, 2008

Now that's how you draw a Japanese!

Take note, Chosun Ilbo. There are two or three weeks of classes between the final exam and the end of the semester, and for me that's a chance to break away from the textbook and basically do whatever I want. It's a little intimidating, but has a good selection of lessons on a variety of topics and of varying degrees of complexity. For some classes I've been doing an activity that teaches the students about the Korean flag in English. The final element of the lesson is to pretend that they are the new president of a unified Korea and design a flag for the new nation. I got this one last week.

When I, um, talked to him about it he modified it to this.

Unique sentiments in that he was only out of about two hundred students who opted for the anti-Japan angle, while others did some variation of the Taegeukgi or used symbols of peace. And I have to give him credit for actually remembering to draw Jeju; most of our young patriots made the Liancourt Rocks the size of Iceland while forgetting the country's largest island. I think he loses points for implying Tsushima is Korean territory, as some excitable Koreans do. Anytime you have "Dokdo is our land!" banners you'll invariably find "Daema-do is our land!" nearby.

But we know it takes very little to get students' going in the anti-Japan direction. You'll remember a couple of years ago when students in Incheon were encouraged to create anti-Japan posters by their middle school teacher, and then had them displayed in local subway stations (here and here).

Hell, their politicians aren't much better. Here are some politicians participating in a Korea-Japan year of friendship.

That got me to thinking about what flag I'd design for the US should I need to irritate our northern neighbors. I don't know what I'd draw, but I guess it'd have to incorporate the Carolina Hurricanes somehow.