This is a special exhibition held in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the March First Independence Movement and the establishment of the Provisional Government of the Republic of Korea. It intends to shed new light on the social conditions of Korea during the Japanese occupation and the lives of children of the time through <Eorini>—Korea’s first monthly magazine for children—and other publications, as well as the achievements of many Korean activists who sought the independence of the country by means of fostering the education of children and the creation of culture and arts for children.
What do you do for fun these days? Playing games? Making slime? Watching online video clips? Well, do you know what the children of 100 years ago play with?
At that time, Korea was under the control of Japan. There was not even a proper word to refer to children and they were considered inferior to grown-ups. Do you know who coined the Korean word “Eorini” meaning “children” and established Children’s Day? It was Bang Jeong-hwan. He wrote many stories and poems for children and published <Eorini>, Korea’s first magazine for children. To the children of the time, who had to work all day and were not able to go to school, reading the magazine afforded great pleasure.
This year marks the 100th anniversary of the March First Independence Movement. After the movement, Japan oppressed even more harshly the independence movement of adults. So, Bang Jeong-hwan and other leaders of the Saekdonghoe Society thought that children were the hope of the future of Korea. They led the Cultural Movement for Children, publishing magazines for children and teaching them various songs and plays, which implanted the spirit of independence into their hearts. As <Eorini> gained high popularity, many boy groups were organized across the country.
Don’t you want to learn more about <Eorini>, the best-selling magazine of a century ago! Enjoy reading the copies of the magazines and imagine the lives of the children at the time.