Film review: Yu Hyun-mok’s Descendants of Cain

I had looked forward to the first movie in the KCC’s Korean Novels on Screen series – Kim Ki-young’s adaptation of Yi Kwang-su’s The Soil – and had been disappointed. Conversely, not being a particular fan of Yu Hyun-mok’s depressing movies, I was regarding the second in the series – his adaptation of Hwang Sun-won’s 1954 […]

Screening: Yu Hyun-mok’s The Descendants of Cain

The second in the KCC’s season of book adaptations is Yu Hyun-mok’s version of Hwang Sun-won’s The Descendants of Cain. LKL reviews the novel here. Yu Hyun-mok: The Descendants of Cain (카인의 후예, 1968) Cast: Kim Jin-kyu, Moon Hee, Park No-sik, Jang Dong-hwi KCCUK, 12 April 2018, 7:00 pm Free admission | register on EventBrite […]

Book review: Hwang Sun-won — Lost Souls

Hwang Sun-won: Lost Souls Translated by Bruce and Ju-Chan Fulton Columbia University Press 2010, 354pp Having quite enjoyed two of Hwang Sun-won’s fuller-length stories – Trees on a Slope and Descendants of Cain – though without necessarily being enamoured of the characters of the stories they inhabited, I was looking forward to tackling Lost Souls, […]

Google Korea remembers Hwang Sun-won

Yesterday was the 100th anniversary of Hwang Sun-won’s birth on 26 March, 1915. Google Korea celebrated with one of their doodles, illustrating Hwang’s most well-known story, The Shower (소나기, 1959). The story was adapted as a movie by Lee Jin-mo in 1978; and Studio Meditation with Pencil is currently working on an animated version, which […]

Book review: Modern Korean Literature — An Anthology 1908-65

Modern Korean Literature: An Anthology 1908-1965 Edited by Chung Chong-wha Routledge / Kegan Paul International, 1995, 467pp If you are looking to sample Korean literature in translation, the chances are that you’ll find more short stories than full length novels. This collection, though not universally enjoyable, is extremely useful in giving an overview of the […]

1970s: the missing decade in Korean film?

Newcomers to Korean film can sometimes get the impression that Korean cinema started with Shiri. Indeed, one contributor to the recent Korean Film Blogathon claimed “Korea’s cinema was virtually non-existing until the new millennium”. Not a sentiment with which I strongly agree. While the last decade has certainly seen more than its fair share of […]

Book review: Hwang Sun-won – The Descendants of Cain

Hwang Sun-won: The Descendants of Cain Translated by Suh Ji-moon and Julie Pickering East Gate / UNESCO, 1997. Originally published 1954 Novels set in post-liberation Korea, or during the Korean war, often make uncomfortable reading, particularly those set in the Soviet sphere of influence, and where the story is set in the countryside. The historical […]