First modification: 06/20/2021 – 16:17
On April 16, 2014, the Sewol ferry sank off the southwestern coast of South Korea, with 476 passengers on board, including 325 high school students who were going on a school trip. Few survived as they obeyed the order to remain in their cabins while the ship was wrecked. Beyond the human tragedy, with 304 lives lost, the disaster sparked widespread social and political unrest in South Korea. Seven years later, we analyze how this event changed the country.
The sinking of the Sewol sparked a debate about South Korea’s culture of obedience and hierarchy and led to the emergence of a new generation of young and politically conscious South Koreans, known as the Sewol generation. They are not yet 20 years old, but many of them have entered politics and are eager to change what they see as a listless political class.
The France 24 team reports from Ansan, a city 30 kilometers south of Seoul, which was the home of the young victims and where the pain of the disaster remains particularly acute.