Lee O-young, a member of the Ewha Academy for Advanced Studies and a former Minister of Culture & Tourism, gave a series of three lectures titled, "Comparing the Cultures of Korea, China and Japan - Geographical Point of View" on November 2, 3, and 16 at the
The first lecture focused on hwatoo (traditional Asian cards). Lee began by saying, if the humanities do not change their paradigms and ways of research, they will cease to exist. He used hwatoo, which originated from
Lee said that each image on cards could be considered as a meme; that is, a sort of social ideological gene subject selection by society in the same way as biological genes are subject to natural selection. "By looking at the differences on hwatoo cards, we can read how the images and symbols of the plants and animals have changed along with the culture interaction between
The second lecture was titled Saehansamwoo, meaning the pine tree, bamboo flower, and plum blossom, so-called three friends of winter. During the lecture, Lee discussed the concepts of homogeneity with reference to the book Fraternite which is written by Jacques Athalie, a French culture critic.
According to Jacque Athalie, if the three countries of
Lee concluded that the symbol that can unite
Lee's last lecture looked at the modern civilization of
"And the beauty of rock, scissors, and paper is in the dynamic way the hand changes its shape. One hand can show a full cycle, like the variation of seasons. Deep philosophy lies in this simple game." Lee speculated that the game itself may well reflect Asian philosophy, and that studying rock, scissors and paper could be another new approach to the humanities.
by Ko Eun-hye