Angela Yoonjeong McClean is a Sociologist whose research interests include international and forced migration, law and society, transnational and global sociology, social movements, and Asian/Asian-American studies.
In her first book project, “Politics of Refugee Reception in South Korea: Liberal Supranational Norms and Restrictive Domestic Institutions,” she explores state and societal responses to asylum claims and refugee inflows in South Korea. South Korea is a rich Asian democracy that is part of the “Global North” but hosts an exceptionally low number of refugees in its territory relative to its counterparts with comparable economic, political, and social capacities. Angela approaches the question of why South Korea has remained an outlier in the Global North vis-à-vis refugee reception from an institutional perspective, showing that the Korean bureaucratic and judicial agencies adjudicating asylum claims have made it nearly impossible for asylum-seekers to win their cases. These institutions are insulated by restrictive domestic norms that are highly disjointed from the liberal supranational norms that pervade Korea’s official policy rhetoric.
Angela received her BA in East Asian Studies and American Studies at Wellesley College, MA in Regional Studies – East Asia from Harvard University, and PhD in Sociology from the University of California, San Diego. Prior to her post at Yale, she was a Korea Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Michigan.