History, Etymology and UsageEdit
Young Hyo Park, a politician, designed Taegukgi. During the period that Japanese ruled Korea, Japanese forbade Taegukgi. Young Hyo Park and many Korean people worked for the independence and used Taegukgi as a symbol of resistance and independence. There are four national holidays; National Liberation Day, the Independence Movement of March 1st, Constitution Day, and the National Foundation Day. On these days, Korean put up Taegukgi. In1882, Korean accepted Taegukgi as a symbol of Korea. The North Korea once adopted Taegukgi but later they changed it.
Taegukgi has trigrams on each corner. On the left upper corner, the three lines are called geon. Geon represents the sky and justice. RI, the four lines under the Geon, represents the sun and wisdom. On the right upper corner, the five lines are called gam, and it represents the moon and vitality. The last six lines at the right bottom called gon represent the earth and fertility. In the middle of Taegukgi, there is Taeguk. Taeguk is derived from Yin Yang. It represents origin of all things in the universe and continuous history.
Icons in FictionEdit
Here are two fictional story of Taegukgi: Father’s Taegukgi and Brotherhood of War. Both stories are developed in the same time period and deals with Taegukgi, but the ways Taegukgi are reflected are completely different. Father’s Taegukgi is about a boy who lived in a war. In the story, the narrator, the boy, describes a scene of the war, “The air strike continued until the afternoon…….My father pulled out something from his backpack and unfolded it. It was Taegukgi. He spread out it on his backpack so it could be seen from the sky.” In this story, Taegukgi shows the father’s patriotism and courage, but in Brotherhood of War, Taegukgi is meaningless. Although the brothers win the war and the Taegukgi flutters, it is nothing if their family and they suffer from the war. It is a brother’s line from the film. “I wish it was a dream. Later I open my eyes in my room and I will tell you that I have a strange dream.”
Icons in Non-FictionEdit
I was looking for a non fictional text, and I found an article about Taegukgi. This news article is about Guri, a Korean city. Guri has declared the first city of Taegukgi to encourage people’s patriotism. The Mayor of Guri, Young Soon Park says, “Love for country comes from love for Taegukgi, but I feel sorry for the fact that many family don’t hoist Taegukgi even on the four most important national holidays.”
Taegukgi contains Korean adversity, happiness, and history. It should be important and meaningful for all the Korean, but I think the meaning of Taegukgi is being forgotten. I wish Korean remembered and were proud of Taegukgi. S.J from 9th grade says, “It is a beautiful and symbolic flag.” And Hanuel Lee also from 9th grade says, “There are a lot of ideas. It shows the experiences of ancient Korea.” My dad says, “When I see Taegukgi, I want Korea to be a strong country and I am proud of my country.”
Bibliography and External SourcesEdit
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