“We are all citizens. We plan to create the value of Asia by discovering leading contents that will lead citizen governance,” said Kim Si-yeon, CEO of Publication Morae-al LLC. “Morae-al” in Korean means grain of sand.
In the era of the sharing economy, where the world needs to share a lot to become prosperous, the publishing company “Morae-al,” which is located in a shared office like a youth company, is now going through an era without boundaries.
In an interview with The Korea Post media, publisher of 3 English and 2 Korean-language news publications since 1985, CEO Kim said, “While majoring in political science, I was curious about the political systems of many countries and the people who led various fields.
“However, it was very difficult to find related books in Korea. I think that many Koreans’ worldview is limited to the US, Europe, and China. Perhaps that's why most publishers only publish books about a few great powers for commercial interests."
CEO Kim also said, “I think publishing is an essential and strategic industry. Through books in various fields, we can show the people new visions and possibilities. I want to create a publishing house that discovers and introduces wisdom from all over the world.
“So, with the idea of making a lot of books myself, I started to publish a collection of event materials in the area where we live in 2019.”
If you are desperate, it will become a reality.
While the members of Morae-al were looking for a proper person they were pursuing, they accidentally came across a person who was praised as the national father of Bangladesh, an Asian country.
The path that Bangladesh has followed is remarkably similar to Korea's modern and contemporary history, from fierce independence movements, liberation, hopes and frustrations, military dictatorship, democratization and rapid economic growth.
‘Bangabandhu’ Sheikh Mujibur Rahman (1920~1975)
Born in Faridpur, British Indian Empire in 1920, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman founded the Awami League and led the independence of Bangladesh after undergoing several imprisonments for opposing Pakistan's oppression of Bengali and suppressing the native language of Bengali. He was a revolutionary leader who drafted a progressive constitution, laid the foundation for the nation, and emphasized a fair economy.
He was a person who was respected by the whole nation enough to be called ' Bangabandhu,” which means friend of Bengal rather than his name.
He was born out of the strong winds of the times, and from the young age of 19, he jumped into the movement for independence, peace, and people's livelihood of the Bengal people.
There were difficulties at every moment, but with an indomitable will, he moved forward toward independence and the founding of the nation.
All of South Asia became independent from Britain, and Bangladesh became independent along with Pakistan.
However, as Pakistan continued its coercive rule, the Bengali people were suppressed and even the use of the Bengali language was suppressed.
He fought to establish an independent state against Pakistan and was finally able to establish Bangladesh.
However, he fell from power due to a military coup, and his entire family was brutally murdered.
However, since he was always entrenched in the hearts of the people of Bangladesh, continuous demand for his restoration continued through the democratization movement after his death, and he was completely restored after the establishment of the democratic government.
Why the country's designer is important
CEO Kim said, “I was interested in autobiography and biography, so I was curious about the designer of each country. Just like Korea’s ‘Kim Gu’ and India’s ‘Gandhi’, I was intrigued by learning that there is Bangabandhu in Bangladesh. I wanted to introduce his story to Korea.”
Books on Bangabandhu have already been published and introduced in several countries.
“It's a little late, but I think it's fortunate to introduce a South Asian person who is unfamiliar to Korea,” said CEO Kim, adding “I think we should pay attention to South Asia, Central Asia, Southwest Asia, Southeast Asia, and Africa in the future.”
The precondition for economic development is ‘political stability’. This is because many Asian countries have achieved better political stability than in the past and are at the forefront of economic development thanks to abundant labor and high-quality manpower.
Jeong Hee-seok, director of Morae-al, said, “I am working on solving administrative problems at our publishing company and finding the best way when new problems arise.
“I think the biggest problem in Korean society right now is mistrust. I want the public to see how we can solve problems by cooperating and negotiating with each other.”
CEO Kim said, “Thanks to the generous consideration and support of the Bangladesh Prime Minister’s Office and the Bangladesh Embassy in Korea, we have translated and published the critical biography of Bangabandhu, the People's Hero, and the book, “The Unfinished Memoirs.”
“We plan to publish not only paper books, but also e-books and distribute them in the near future,” he said.
British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher once said, "We must not forget that today is the age of ordinary people, but we need extraordinary people."
It is because we can learn wisdom, courage, aspirations and determination from their revolutionary life.
CEO Kim said, “We are interested in novels and non-fiction fields, but if we have to choose, we are interested in autobiography and biography. After all, politics and economics are all people's work.
“It is difficult to study a country itself and its history as a whole, but if you follow the life of the leader who made that history, it makes it much easier to understand a country in depth.
“There is a saying that if you want to be a great person, you have to be by his or her side. However, there are many cases where time and space are impossible, so I think that through the book, we can learn a lot from the heroic hero who lives and breathes in history, looking closely at the lives of great people.”
If we think about it, there were many leaders in each country who turned crisis into opportunity with determination and insight.
In Korea, when the IMF (international bailout) crisis came, she graduated from international bailout at an early stage by uniting the people and handling the economy consistently.
The United States could have become the center of the world thanks to the case of hoarding economic nourishment through such a period well and the leader who overcame the overwhelming oligopoly during the Great Depression and returned the economy to normal with determination.
CEO Kim said, “There are various types of books, but I think autobiography and critical biography can play such a role. In particular, there are many great figures that are not yet well known in Korea. I want to publish a lot of autobiography and critical biography of such people.”
We want to blow our values into the wind as grains of sand (Morae-al)
CEO Kim said, “I think the future environmental agenda is the biggest concern in the future. I think publishing has a lot to do with the media. I want to contribute to cultivating independence and pride in the people by publishing enlightening and fact-based books.”
He said that the goal is to publish a book that finds answers to problems in Korean society, such as the environment, education, and real estate, from best practices around the world.
CEO Kim also said, “There are many countries that I am interested in. In particular, I would like to publish a book about the relationship between Gabon and Korea, and the background of the birth of the Korean car ‘Bongo’.”
Why does Bhutan in Asia have a high happiness index?
And who made the kingdom of happiness with what philosophy and policy?
“We are aiming to publish a book about the backgrounds and people of Asian and African countries, such as why so many blockchain technologists enter El Salvador,” he said.
“Korean startups focus only on ‘technology’. But we try to focus on 'value'. Technology is interchangeable, but its value is eternal. I think that power is in a great book,” he said.
CEO Kim said, “Of course, as a publishing house run by the younger generation, we plan to publish new types of books such as e-books and audiobooks.
“There is a saying that two is better than one, and three is better than two. Students who like books and are very interested in each other take on roles.
“Politics, English literature, computer science, Korean literature, public administration, law, etc. are diverse. I am sure that we will be able to become a great publisher if we work together in our respective knowledge and areas of expertise and divide our labor.”
Ju Min-Young, director of Morae-al, said, “I like the saying that if I make my dreams come true, someone else will. These days, young people have a high tendency to be aggressive towards investments in bitcoins and stocks. This also seems to reflect the psychology of uneasy young people. I think we should become a publishing company that can provide answers to the lives of young people.”
Director Jeong said, “There is a saying by Confucius that you should not worry about when your power and status go down, but about when they go up. The saying that you should not be lazy in refining yourself like this touches my heart.
“I also think that our publishing company should not be arrogant about the achievements it has made and should polish them.”
Good publishing also affects public education
CEO Kim said, “I think that public education in Korea needs to be established again. First of all, I think the classroom structure needs to be restructured creatively. It seems that it is difficult to cultivate creative thinking in children with a uniform and rigid structure like a military barracks.
“There is a joke that ‘Apple’ is in the chest and ‘Samsung’ is in the wallet. I am convinced that there is a future only when students are taught Korean philosophy and oriental philosophy that is approached from a humanistic perspective rather than a technical aspect that considers simple convenience.”
He argued that for the future of the country, philosophy education should be provided in public education, and later revealed his dream of publishing the related textbooks or books.
It seemed to be refreshing that he would continue to take an interest in the wide world and our society and make an effort to make Morae-al an international publishing company.
“Stay hungry, Stay foolish!” - Steve Jobs -