Kwangju

dreamthinkspeak, pioneers of site responsive performance, are creating a new production entitled ONE DAY MAYBE as part of the HULL CITY of CULTURE programme of events. The production is scheduled for September this year. ONE DAY, MAYBE is inspired by the 1980 Gwangju Democratic Uprising in South Korea. The project casts an eye on the […]

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Why Han Kang’s Human Acts is likely to be my book of the year

by Philip Gowman 17 February 2016
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Han Kang: Human Acts Translated by Deborah Smith Portobello Books, 2016, 224pp Originally published as 소년이 온다, Changbi Publishers Inc, Seoul, 2014 Han Kang’s Human Acts hits the bookshelves in the UK just as The Vegetarian starts to make waves in the US. The latter book has already made its mark in the UK, making […]

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Event news: launch of Han Kang’s Human Acts

by Philip Gowman 17 December 2015
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Three separate opportunities to hear Han Kang talk about her newly-translated book, Human Acts – a Norwich appearance sandwiched in between two London ones. If you can’t wait to get hold of a copy of the book, Foyles (whose event is 13 Jan) claim they have “exclusive availability of Human Acts for a full month […]

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Hong Seong-dam’s art in the news again

by Philip Gowman 31 August 2014
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In 2012 his unflattering painting of President-elect Park got the ruling party annoyed; now Hong Seong-nam is in the news again for lampooning Park’s response to the Sewol disaster in an exhibition linked to the Gwangju Biennale. It’s difficult to know precisely what has been going on in Gwangju from the snippets that make it […]

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10th Gwangju Biennale to be introduced at the ICA

by Philip Gowman 29 April 2014
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Coming up on 1 May 2014 at 6:30 at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, Jessica Morgan, Artistic Director of the 10th Gwangju Biennale, introduces the curatorial framework of the next edition, Burning Down the House, opening in September 2014. This will be followed by a conversation with Sally Tallant, Director of Liverpool Biennial – The […]

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March For The Beloved – in memory of Gwangju

by Philip Gowman 18 May 2013
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On the anniversary of the 18 May 1980 uprising in Gwangju, here is song which became its unofficial anthem. It was written in 1982 by Kim Jong-ryul for his friends, a couple who were murdered in the uprising. The title is 임을 위한 행진곡 or “March for the beloved”, sometimes translated as “March for the […]

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Kang Bong Kyu: Korea, Koreanity at the KCC

by Philip Gowman 5 October 2011
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It’s only a brief, 2-week, exhibition, but it’s well worth a visit. In fact it’s worth more than one visit: From 5th October to 18th October 2011, the Federation for Gwangju Museum of Art will hold an exhibition on traditional Korean aesthetics entitled, “Kang Bong Kyu, Korean, Koreanity” at the Korean Cultural Centre UK (KCCUK). […]

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Festival visit: Jasmine Gwangju

by Philip Gowman 14 August 2011
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Gwangju seems an event from the distant past, but in fact was only 31 years ago. This year, the archives which document the history of that brief uprising were listed by UNESCO in their Memory of the World register. With perfect timing, bearing in mind the democratic uprisings in the Arab world this year, the […]

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New Korean heritage listings at UNESCO

by Philip Gowman 31 May 2011
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Diaries of Kwangju uprising, plus the Ilsungrok (account of Joseon kings' daily lives) have just been listed in UNESCO Memory of the World http://bit.ly/lJNKdY #

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Book Review: Hwang Sok-yong – The Old Garden

by Philip Gowman 6 April 2011
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Hwang Sok-yong: The Old Garden / The Ancient Garden Originally published in 2000 English translation by Jay Oh, Seven Stories Press 2009 / Picador 2010. “More has been expected of Hwang Sok-yong than almost any other Korean writer of the past quarter century,” says Bruce Fulton1. Having read The Guest (2002), and having watched and […]

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Petal essay contest Salon des Refusés 3

by Peter Corbishley 15 December 2009
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Peter Corbishley offers his entry into the “There a Petal Silently Falls” essay competition. A Korean novella – a human tragedy It is unnerving to have images from a half-recollected film1 play through a reading of There a Petal Silently Falls.2 Yet that sense of disorientation evocatively models how the girl’s bewildered spirit-awareness3 interweaves, recalls […]

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Petal essay contest Salon des Refusés 2

by Philip Gowman 11 December 2009
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The LKL Editor contributes his own unsuccessful entry into the “There a Petal Silently Falls” essay contest. Ghosts of Kwangju Ch’oe Yun’s There a petal silently falls is an interesting choice for a first Korean literature essay contest. Elusive in content, obscure in characterisation and insubstantial in length, it encourages a discussion not about the […]

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Petal essay contest Salon des Refusés 1

by Michael Rank 10 December 2009
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Earlier this year the Korean Literature Translation Institute sponsored an essay competition based on Ch’oe Yun’s There a Petal Silently Falls. Now that the finalists have been announced, Michael Rank is the first to offer his submission for publication on the pages of LKL. The Kwangju (Gwangju) massacre of 1980 has been called the most […]

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Sandglass the best TV drama ever?

by Philip Gowman 12 February 2009
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A run-down of the top Korean TV dramas, as voted on by the experts.

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May 18 – surprise hit of the LKFF

by Philip Gowman 18 November 2008
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A review of May 18, a modern historical drama about Korea’s Tiananmen Square incident

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Donald Kirk & Choe Sang-hun (eds): Korea Witness

by Philip Gowman 30 October 2006
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Korea Witness: 135 Years of War, Crisis and News in the Land of the Morning Calm (EunHaengNaMu, Seoul, 2006) A tribute to the many foreign correspondents who have worked in Seoul, this book celebrates 50 years of the Seoul Foreign Correspondents Club. The book starts with one of the first mentions of Korea in the […]

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Gi-Wook Shin & Kyung-moon Hwang (eds): Contentious Kwangju

by Philip Gowman 17 April 2006

(Rowman & Littlefield, 2003) Varied collection of articles on the subject of Korea’s Tiananmen Square incident, ranging from the eyewitness account to academic reassessment. The people of Kwangju: innocent victims or resistance heroes? Discuss. Links: Bibliography of the Kwangju Uprising (in English) – at Popular Gusts

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