Radu Diaconu

The Korean Muslims
Location: Nicosia, Cyprus
Nationality: Canada
Biography: Originally from Bucharest, Romania, I grew up and studied in Montreal, Quebec, Canada.I specialize in medium to long-term projects about social, humanitarian and religious issues.Documentary and street photography are the two elements that define... MORE
Public Story
The Korean Muslims
Copyright Radu Diaconu 2022
Date of Work May 2017 - Jun 2017
Updated May 2018
Location Seoul
Topics Documentary, Editorial, Faith, Fine Art, Happiness, Landscape, Minority, Peace, Photography, Photojournalism, Portraiture, Religion, Reporting, Street, Terrorism, Travel, War
“Some people would yell at me and tell me to go back to my country, while others would say that I have a bomb in my jacket,” she says. “For them, being a foreigner who is Muslim is acceptable, but not a Korean Muslim.” Ola Bora Song, Korean Muslim Convert.

Islam and the Korean Peninsula share a history of mutual fascination and curiosity. From the era of the Silk Road in the 9th century to today's modern interconnected world, the bonds that were once forged through maritime travel have now been passed on to a new generation of young Muslim Koreans, who try to find a balance between their Korean culture and newfound religion.

Retracing the history of Islam in Korea and its reintroduction to the country by Turkish troops during the 1950-1953 Korean War, My colleague and I spoke with several generations of South Korean Muslims, who expressed the difficulties they face in the Confucian Korean society dominated by class, age hierarchy, a strong drinking culture, and a distrust of Islam.


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