Yun Posun (Korean: 윤보선; Hanja: 尹潽善; Korean pronunciation: [jun.bo.sʌn] or [jun] [po.sʌn]; August 26, 1897 – July 18, 1990) was a South Korean politician and Korean independence activist, who served as President of South Korea from 1960 to 1962 before being replaced by the long-serving Park Chung-hee as a result of the May 16 coup in 1961.
Yun in 1960
|2nd President of South Korea|
August 13, 1960 – March 22, 1962
|Prime Minister||Ho Chong|
|Preceded by||Rhee Syngman|
|Succeeded by||Park Chung-hee|
|2nd Mayor of Seoul|
15 December 1948 – 5 June 1949
|Preceded by||Kim Hyong-min|
|Succeeded by||Lee Ki-poong|
|Born||August 26, 1897|
Sinhang-ri, Dunpo-myeon, Asan County, South Chungcheong, Joseon
(present day South Korea)
|Died||July 18, 1990 (aged 92)|
Anguk-dong, Jongno District, Seoul, South Korea
|Resting place||Yun Family Cemetery|
|Political party||Democratic (1955) →|
New Democratic (1967)
(Liberalism in South Korea)
|Spouse(s)||Lady Min (1910s–1937), Gong Deok-gwi (1948–1990)|
|Alma mater||University of Edinburgh (BA, MA)|
|Revised Romanization||Yun Boseon|
Having entered politics after World War II, Yun served as Secretary to Korea's Chief of Staff in 1947; and was Mayor of Seoul in 1948. He served as Commerce Minister for the newly liberated Korea from 1949 to 1950. In 1955 Yun helped establish the South Korean Democratic Party.
Yun Posun was born in Dunpo-myeon, Asan, South Chungcheong Province in 1897. He was a son of Yun Chiso (윤치소, 尹致昭, 1871–1944) and Lady Yi Beomsuk (이범숙, 李範淑, 1876–1969). Yun studied in the United Kingdom, graduating with a Master of Arts from the University of Edinburgh in 1930. He returned to Korea in 1932.
Yun entered politics in 1945 following Gwangbokjeol (Liberation Day). The first Doctor of Philosophy from Princeton University in Korea, as well as first President of South Korea, Dr. Syngman Rhee, was his mentor. By 1947, Yun was serving as Secretary to the Korean Chief of Staff. In 1948, Rhee appointed Yun to the position of mayor of Seoul. A year later, he was made Minister of Commerce and Industry. However, Yun soon began to disagree with Rhee's authoritarian policies.
While serving as president of the Red Cross Society, he was elected to the National Assembly in 1954. A year later, he co-founded the opposition South Korean Democratic Party. In 1959, he became a representative to the Supreme Council of the Democratic Party.
Short term presidencyEdit
Rhee's government was ousted by a student-led, pro-democracy uprising in 1960; and Yun was elected president on August 13, and appointed Chang Myon as First Minister. In response to the authoritarian excesses of Rhee's regime, South Korea had switched to a parliamentary system; so in fact Yun served merely as a figurehead.
Following Park Chung Hee's coup in 1961, Yun stayed in his post in order to provide some legitimacy to the new regime, but resigned on March 22, 1962. In the following years, Yun received suspended sentences several times for anti-government activities. He opposed Park's authoritarian rule and ran for president twice, in 1963 and 1967, losing each time.
Yun retired from active politics in 1980 and focused his life on cultural activities until his death on July 18, 1990.
- "Road of Thorns; The National Salvation"; autobiography; (구국의 가시밭길)》 (1967)
- "Select the Days of Lonely"; (외로운 선택의 나날들)》 (1991)
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Yun Bo-seon.|
- Official website (in Korean)
- Papyeong Yun clan website
- Yun Posun[permanent dead link] at Heonjeonghoe (in Korean)
- Yun Posun at Encyclopedia of Korean Culture (in Korean)
| President of South Korea
13 August 1960–22 March 1962
| Mayor of Seoul City
| Commerce Minister of South Korea