226: Soju (with Dr. Hyunhee Park)
We talk a lot about the ghost type of spirits on the show, but what about the liquor kind of spirits? We’re joined by Dr. Hyunhee Park to talk about the global history of the distinctive Korean drink: Soju. Hint: It all comes back to the Mongols.
Content Warning: This episode contains conversations about or mentions of colonialism, conquest and war, disease/illness, and wealth disparity.
Hyunhee Park is an Associate Professor of History at the City University of New York, John Jay College of Criminal Justice and CUNY Graduate Center and author of Soju: A Global History. A native of South Korea, she received her BA in Asian and Western history at Seoul National University in 1997, her MA in East Asian Studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in 2003, and her Ph.D. in history at Yale University in 2008. She specializes in the history of cross-cultural contacts in East Asia, Islamic World, the Mongol Empire, and global intellectual history focusing on information/knowledge transfers including geographical knowledge, foodways, and distillation.
- Recommendation: This week, Julia recommends All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders.
- Books: Check out our previous book recommendations, guests’ books, and more at spiritspodcast.com/books
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Spirits was created by Julia Schifini, Amanda McLoughlin and Eric Schneider. We are founding members of Multitude, an independent podcast collective and production studio. Our music is "Danger Storm" by Kevin MacLeod (http://incompetech.com), licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0.