London Korean Links

Covering things Korean in London and beyond since 2006

K-Lit in the Korean wave: a forum at the KCC

In the run-up to the London Book Fair in 2014, at which Korea is the focus country, we can expect more literature-themed events. Earlier this year, we had Krys Lee at Asia House; there are rumours that the London Korean Film Festival this year will have a literature-themed strand; and maybe in preparation for that we have a literature forum at the KCC next week, the day on which the programme for the film fest is announced. A coincidence? I hope not.

The forum, chaired by Samira Ahmed, will ask questions such as:

  • What is the place of Korean literature in the wider Korean wave?
  • What does Korean literature have to contribute to world literature?
  • What is unique about K-Lit?
  • What would UK readers be surprised to find out about Korean literature?
  • Will K-Lit ever build a profile that can compete with the popularity of K-Pop and K-Film?

Not to be missed.

Korean Literature: Taking its place on the Korean Wave

K-Lit forum poster

The London Book Fair Korea Market Focus Cultural Programme kicks off with an evening forum on Tuesday October 15 organised by the Korean Cultural Centre and the British Council.

K-Lit – Taking Its Place on the Korean Wave will explore the place of Korean literature in the worldwide wave of interest in contemporary Korean culture and will be held at 7pm at the Korean Cultural Centre, Grand Buildings, 1-3 Strand London WC2N 5BW (020 7004 2600).

The event, chaired by BBC journalist Samira Ahmed, will present a panel discussion about developments and themes in contemporary Korean literature. Dr Grace Koh and other distinguished speakers will join for the panel discussion, which will be followed by a reception.

To book a seat, please send an RSVP email to [email protected]

Dr Grace Koh is a lecturer in Korean Literature at SOAS, University of London, where she has convened the MA Korean Literature and MA Comparative Literature programmes and teaches courses on Korean literature, literary theory, and translation. She received her BA in Comparative Literature and French Studies at the American University of Paris, MSt in Korean Studies and DPhil in Oriental Studies (Korean Literature) at Oxford University. Her research areas include Korean and East Asian literary prose traditions; literary and intellectual history; travel literature and cultural encounters; critical theory and comparative literature.

Samira Ahmed is a journalist, broadcaster and visiting professor of journalism at Kingston University and lives in New Malden, where she developed her love of Korean culture. She presents Sunday Morning Live and Newswatch on BBC1, Night Waves on Radio 3, Something Understood on Radio 4 and has makes documentaries for Radio 4 on subjects ranging from David Bowie to Westerns. She writes a column for The Big Issue and contributes to newspapers including The Guardian. She won a Stonewall Broadcast of the year award while a reporter and presenter at Channel 4 News. Samira began her career as a BBC news correspondent and has worked as a reporter on Newsnight, the Today programme, as the BBC’s Los Angeles Correspondent and news anchor for Deutsche Welle TV in Berlin.

Emmie Francis is an editor at Short Books, where she works with narrative non-fiction, literary fiction / memoir and literature in translation. Previously she worked at Grove / Atlantic, Inc. in New York. Educated in London and at Harvard University, she completed the Columbia University Publishing Course in 2011. She is also a contributing editor at The White Review, a quarterly arts journal published in print and online specialising in new or emerging artists and writers.

The author Jeong Chan has concentrated on the impossible questions ‘Can humans ever be redeemed?’ and, ‘What is the origin of existence?’ which are so immense that nobody could ever answer them.

Many of the main characters in Jeong Chan’s novels are novelists. Through these characters he investigates ontological questions such as ‘What is the novel and the novelist?’ and ‘How difficult is it to be a novelist in the 21st century?’ He is interested in concepts such as Power, the Almighty, and Redemption. The main characters grab these concepts and struggle with them throughout his novels. His novels are a prophecy rather than a story, each a representation of friendship.

He started literary career in 1983. His readers are River of Memory, Complete Soul, The Cosy Road, Die in Venice, White Circular Moon, Two Lives, The Clean House and so on. Also his long novels are Nights, Under the Rodem tree, Pilate's Jesus, Shadow Soul, Wilderness, Vagabond and so on. He was awarded from Dong-In literacy award, Dong-Seo literacy award and so on. He teaches novel in Dong-Eui university now.

The London Book Fair 2014 will be 8-10 April 2014.

(automatically generated) Read LKL’s review of this event here.

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