A look back at the 2018 literary year

A look back at the books and literary events of the year – and a summary of my reading diary. Literature in translation In translated fiction, my reading this year has not managed anywhere near to keep pace with the amount of translations being published. I know I said the same in respect of 2017 […]

Brief review: Kim Ki-young – The Soil

I’m not sure quite how to assess Kim Ki-young’s adaptation of Yi Kwang-su’s 500-page serial novel The Soil (흙, 1932-3). At 125 minutes, it doesn’t sound particularly long. But as we got up from our seats at the KCC last Thursday at around 9:15pm, it felt much later – maybe around 10:30pm. And that wasn’t […]

Book review: Yi Kwang-su — The Soil

Yi Kwang-su: The Soil Translated by Hwang Sun-ae and Horace Jeffery Hodges Dalkey Archive, 2013, 512pp Originally published as 흙, 1932-3 Yi Kwang-su’s The Soil, at over 500 pages long, is not a book that immediately entices you to read it. But with a screening of Kim Ki-young’s adaptation of the novel coming up shortly […]

Screening: Kim Ki-young’s The Soil

This year the KCC’s first film screenings are adaptations of Korean novels. We start the season with Kim Ki-young’s adaptation of Yi Kwang-su’s 1932 novel 흙, variously known as The Soil, Earth or Peasants. Kim Ki-young: The Soil (흙 – 1978) Cast: Lee Hwa-si, Kim Jeong-cheol, Yeom Bok-soon, Nam Sung-hoon Thu 29 March 2018, 19:00 […]

2017 Korean Literature Nights

The KCC’s first Korean Literature Night of 2017 features another of Hwang Sun-mi’s short novels. And this year, the nights don’t clash with the film screenings. 2017 Korean Literature Nights The Korean Literature Night (KLN) is a monthly discussion group, held on the last Wednesday evening of the month (apart from the first meeting), that […]

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 […]

Korean authors by an English painter

British artist Billy Childish exhibits portraits of two celebrated Korean authors (Yi Kwang-su and Yi Sang) in his Seoul show entitled Strange Bravery at Gallery Hyundai in Jongno, Seoul, till 3 June. http://bit.ly/JdjPZR

Melodrama of the Modern Girl: Jaesaeng by Yi Kwang-su

Further details of this Friday’s talk at SOAS: Friday, December 4th, 5pm, room G50 (main building) Dr. Michael Shin, University of Cambridge Melodrama of the Modern Girl: The Novel Jaesaeng by Yi Kwang-su (1924-25) Abstract: Yi Kwang-su’s Jaesaeng (Rebirth) was one of the most popular novels in colonial Korea during the 1920s. One reason for […]

Michael Shin on Yi Kwang-su’s The Heartless

The third Global Korea lecture of 2009 will be held at the KCC on 29 September at 6:30pm. Michael Shin from Cambridge University will talk on Yi Gwangu’s The Heartless, sometimes known as Korea’s first modern novel. There will be a raffle to win the novel in an English translation. The novel The Heartless by […]