In 2008, Prof. Yang returned to Jeju island, having left a rewarding life as a famed artist and film critic in the capital, Seoul, to join protests against construction of a planned naval base on the shores of Gangjeong, a village in Jeju Island.
She traveled without money, slept outdoors and relied on the charity of others for food. When she was not on the road, Peace Pilgrim gave lectures and gathered signatures for several peace petitions, one of which was a plea for immediate peace in Korea.
By redbaiting SPARK as a communist, pro-North organization, the South Korean government is trying to taint the Jeju naval base resistance and send a message to others that if they are or become involved, they too will be branded and targeted.
What happens when a profession becomes obsolete? Or when no one wishes to carry on a tradition? A tiny community of skin divers in the Korean Strait constitutes the last generation that will earn its living underwater.