The Future of Education

Edition 14

Accepted Abstracts

Mr. Sunshine as a Tool for Teaching Korean History and Culture

Yunsuk Chae, Middle Georgia State University (United States)


Even before Squid Game, K-dramas, or Korean dramas, had been around and been popular with audiences from many parts of the world for the last two decades. Among them, Mr. Sunshine can be an effective tool to teach the Korean history and culture of the late 1800s and early 1900s, which witnessed the fall of Joseon, the last Korean dynasty. Although some parts and characters are fictionalized, the TV series follows many of the historical events of those decades. In addition to Korean history, this multi-faceted work encompasses many other aspects students can delve into, such as identity, gender roles, class system, character development, cinematography, and language and communication. As I incorporated this historical drama in a fully-online class on culture, I developed two tests that assessed students’ ability to analyze important scenes from most of the 24 episodes that make up the series. Students also had the opportunity to tap into their poetic sensitivity as they were asked to examine the use of metaphors in certain scenes.

Keywords: teaching K-culture, Mr. Sunshine, K-dramas


[1] Arirang TV. “Arirang Special M60Ep199 The Untold Story - "The Korean Empire." YouTube, uploaded by Arirang TV. 12 Feb. 2014,

[2] Mr. Sunshine. Created by Myung-Han Lee (tvN) and Netflix, Studio Dragon and Hwa&Dam Pictures, 2018.

[3] Yim, Seung-Hye. “The Fact and Fiction in ‘Mr. Sunshine’.” Korea JoonAng Daily, 14 Oct. 2018,


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