VANK calls on American publishers to correct misinformation about Korea
The Voluntary Agency Network of Korea (VANK) requested American publishers to correct books that contain incorrect information about Korea on Monday.
In National Geographic's 2021 book "Ultimate Visual History of the World: The Story of Humankind From Prehistory to Modern Times," Korea is described as "in Southeast Asia" and "long controlled by China."
However, Korea is located in East Asia. Korea did pay tribute to Chinese Empires, as did Japan and Vietnam, but has never been under China's direct control.
The book's map of Korea also omits Jeju Island, Ulleung Island and the Dokdo islets. Nonetheless, the book was selected as one of "Editor's Pick: Best History Books" on the U.S. e-commerce website Amazon.
Merriam-Webster's 2020 edition of "Student Atlas" listed "Chinese religions" such as "Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism" as Korea's religions. But according to the Korean Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism's report, Korea has no dominant religion. In fact, Korea is a rare example of a country in which Eastern religions and Western Christianity coexist with similar levels of social influence.
The atlas adds that South Korea's languages are "Korean, English" while North Korea uses "Korean." In reality, Korea's official languages are Korean and Korean Sign Language.
VANK was founded in 1999 with a mission to promote Korean culture and history online.
BY HALEY YANG [firstname.lastname@example.org]