Confucian Statecraft and Korean Institutions. Yu Hyongwon and the Late Choson Dynasty - James B. Palais

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gok had also admired. Such scholars were to function in two ways: giving advice
to the king and his court or functioning as teachers in government schools. He
suggested that provincial governors and district magistrates be required to rec-
ommend men in their jurisdiction "who are knowledgeable in the ways of the
early kings, are full of virtue, and who can act as teachers and exemplars" to be
given special appointments as enlightened selected scholars (t'ungmy6ng
ch onsa) holding ranks one-to-three on the official scale of nine. If an eminent
scholar happened to hold a low rank, it was not to stand in the way of his pro-
motion. The selected scholars would be given extremely courteous treatment
wherever they traveled and when they arrived at court, they would be housed in
separate quarters near the royal palace. 140
In confornlity with the ancient model the selected scholars would first be
observed for a time in order to evaluate their wisdom. The king would invite them
to give advice on policy matters or lectures on scholarly questions, and they would
take turns attending the regular Royal Lectures and answer the king's questions
on the classical text under discussion for the day. The best of them would then
be appointed as teachers in the National Academy (T'aehak); the next most qual-
ified would serve as teachers in capital, provincial, and district schools. 141
Yu also designed similar recruitment procedures to improve the quality of pre-
fectural and district educational officials (kyogwall). Local students and schol-
ars would recommend men for this position to the provincial governor with a
cover letter from the district magistrate. The only criterion for recommendation
was virtuous behavior, not current status as a former official or Confucian
scholar. 142
To improve the status of official schools in general Yu also found it important
to requirc by law that local magistrates express respect for students in the schools
fornlally and openly. Officials on business from the capital, the governor and
his assistant (Tosa), and the secret censors (6sa) would all be required to pay
respects to the Confucian shrine and exchange bows with the students when-
ever they visited the school. Provincial governors would have to visit all schools
twice a year in spring and autumn. If from laziness or lack of concern they sum-
moned the students to their own quarters instead, they would be subject to severe
punishment. On the occasion of these required school visits the governor would
meet with the educational officials, headmaster, and teachers, perfoml rites at
the Confucian shrine, and conduct an examination of the students' knowledge
of selected texts. Although not required by law, the governor and his assistant
would also be encouraged to visit schools when oil duty to lecture the students
and encourage them in their work. '43
Yu went into great detail in specifying etiquette to be used between students,
officials, and guests to make sure that the proper respect hierarchy be maintained.
The provincial governor and his assistant would be required to bow in response
to the kowtow of the assembled students, but the headmaster and assistant head-
master would be excused from doing so, explicitly elevating them in status over
the noneducational bureaucrats even though they were lower in rank. He took

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