The Korea Foundation Cultural Center Library is an essential resource in downtown Seoul. Go to City Hall station on line 2 (Green) and exit 9, then walk straight down the street, less than 500 meters, to the Joongang Ilbo Building. The library is in the larger Cultural Center, which often has interesting art and history exhibits. Last month it had a holocaust exhibit, and this month it has a guitarist with an alarming moustache and surly demeanor. ^^
But the library is the main attraction, as it features:
- 860 Korean language textbooks and dictionaries
- 9,200 books, periodicals, and multimedia materials on Korean culture, history and society (This includes a plethora of translated Korean fiction)
- 5,200 book periodicals and multimedia materials related to countries around the world.
- 170 CDs, 240 DVDs, and 320 vidoetapes on Korean and foreign cultures.
- The library is super-clean and efficient, there is a small coffee shop right next to it, and a larger one on the floor above, and the bathrooms are clean even by Seoul standards.
Everyone is welcome to use the library, though children under 10 must be accompanied, and to check items out, you need to be planning to stay in Korea for at least three weeks. Once you do have a library card you can check out up to four books at a time, with a three-week term (extendable for one week by internet). The library has computers for internet research
and viewing multimedia. There is also a photocopier and printer, for which you can purchase electronic cards. Copying is a ridiculously inexpensive 50 won per page, although you are not allowed to copy entire books.
The library is the most extensive I’ve found in Korea – far more extensive than that of the KLTI. Magazines are for sale.
Open from 10-6 all days except Sundays and public holidays, the librarian is perfectly fluent in English, and 100% helpful.
JoongAng Ilbo (중앙일보) Building,
1st floor, 7 Sunhwa-dong, Jung-gu, Seoul, 100-759
Tel – (82-2) 2151-6500, 6350 Fax – (82-2) 2151-6590
email – firstname.lastname@example.org