The country currently has 13 inscribed sites under its belt.

Confucian academies potentially South Korea’s next UNESCO World Heritage sites

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South Korea 190516
Donam Seowon, one of nine Confucian academies South Korea is hoping to put on the UNESCO World Heritage list.
South Korea 190516

Earlier this week, UNESCO’s International Council on Monuments and Sites recommended nine of South Korea’s Confucian academies, or Seowon, to be inscribed on its World Heritage list, according to a report by The Korea Herald.

South Korea has 13 UNESCO World Heritage Sites at the moment, but the country’s Cultural Heritage Administration (CHA) is hoping to add one more to the list. 

Earlier this week, UNESCO’s International Council on Monuments and Sites recommended nine of South Korea’s Confucian academies, or Seowon, to be inscribed on its World Heritage list, according to a report by The Korea Herald.

This application has been under deliberation since last January.

Seowon were educational facilities during the Joseon period, which lasted from 1392 to 1910. Back then, they also served as libraries, publishing houses and venues for discussing social and political matters. 

According to CHA, seowon have outstanding universal value because they “contributed to the spread of Neo-Confucianism during the Joseon period, while simultaneously being evidence of the widespread adoption of the philosophy during the era”. 

The final decision, however, will only be made during the 43rd meeting of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee in Baku, Azerbaijan, which will take place from June 30 to July 10. 


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