Division System in Crisis

From the publisher’s website: Paik Nak-chung is one of Korea’s most incisive contemporary public intellectuals. By training a literary scholar, he is perhaps best known as an eloquent cultural and political critic. This volume represents the first book-length collection of his writings in English. Paik’s distinctive theme is the notion of a “division system” on the […]

The Kwangju Uprising: Eyewitness Press Accounts of Korea’s Tiananmen

From the publisher’s website: The Kwangju Uprising that occurred in May 1980 is burned into the minds of South Koreans in much the same way that Tiananmen is burned into the minds of contemporary Chinese. As the world watched in horror following the assassination of President Park Chung Hee, student protesters were brutally suppressed by […]

Toegye and Gobong Write Letters

From the publisher’s website: Toegye and Gobong Write Letters is a unique look into the lives of two prominent Confucius scholars. This special edition of their letters highlights their personal struggles as civil servants and scholars. Set in the backdrop of the Four Seven debate, the greatest philosophical debate in Korean neo-Confucianism, these poignant letters have […]

The Four-Seven Debate: An Annotated Translation of the Most Famous Controversy in Korean Neo-Confucian Thought

From the publisher’s website: This book is an annotated translation, with introduction and commentary, of the correspondence between Yi Hwang (T’oegye, 1500-1570) and Ki Taesung (Kobong, 1527-1572) and between Yi I (Yulgok, 1536-1584) and Song Hon (Ugye, 1535-1598), known as the Four-Seven Debate, the most famous philosophical controversy in Korean Neo-Confucian thought. The most complex […]

Imperatives of Culture: Selected Essays on Korean History, Literature, and Society from the Japanese Colonial Era

From the publisher’s website: This volume contains translations — many appearing for the first time in the English language — of major literary, critical, and historical essays from the colonial period (1910–1945) in Korea. Considered representative of the debates among and between Korean and Japanese thinkers of the colonial period, these texts shed light on […]

Seeking Order in a Tumultuous Age: The Writings of Chŏng Tojŏn, a Korean Neo-Confucian

From the publisher’s website: Chŏng Tojŏn, one of the most influential thinkers in Korean history, played a leading role in the establishment of the Chosŏn dynasty (1392–1910). Long recognized for his contributions to the development of Neo-Confucianism in Korea, Chŏng was both a prodigious writer and an influential statesman before being murdered in a political […]

Zainichi Literature

From the publisher’s website: This collection of translated works highlights a selection of writings in translation by Zainichi (diasporic Koreans in Japan). The introduction provides an historical overview of Zainichi diasporic identity; the concluding appendix considers the figure of Kin Kakuei and the flourishing Zainichi literature in the 1960s. Authors whose works are translated and […]

Selected Writings of Han Yongun: From Social Darwinism to ‘Socialism with a Buddhist Face’

From the publisher’s website: One of Korea’s most eminent Buddhists and political activists in the independence movement during the long years of Japan’s colonization of his country, Han Yongun, otherwise known as Manhae (1879-1944), was a prolific writer and outstanding poet, known especially for his poetry collection Nim ui ch’immuk (‘The Silence of the Lover’). […]

My Korea: Forty Years without a Horsehair Hat

From the publisher’s website: A  fascinating and highly personal introduction to Korea. Part memoir, part miscellany, it introduces traditional and contemporary Korean culture through a series of essays, stories, anecdotes and poems. Confucianism, Buddhism, relationships, everyday living, language and literature are comprehensively covered. Read a discussion by Colin Marshall in the LA Review of Books […]

Epistolary Korea: Letters in the Communicative Space of the Choson, 1392-1910

From the publisher’s website: By expanding the definition of “epistle” to include any writing that addresses the intended receiver directly, JaHyun Kim Haboush introduces readers to the rich epistolary practice of Chosŏn Korea. The Chosŏn dynasty (1392-1910) produced an abundance of epistles, writings that mirror the genres of neighboring countries (especially China) while retaining their […]

The Aphorisms of Yi Deok-mu: Musings of a Grateful Reader

From the publisher’s website: This volume brings together excerpts from Seongyuldang nongso [蟬橘堂濃笑: The Inexorable Glee of Master Seongyuldang] and Imokgusimseo [耳目口心書: First-hand Observations] by the 18th-century scholar Yi Deok-mu. Seongyuldang nongso is a collection of Yi’s observations about life. In Imokgusimseo, Yi writes about what he heard, saw, said, and felt in the day-to-day. […]

Song of Arirang: The Story of a Korean Rebel Revolutionary in China

From the publisher’s website: Song of Arirang tells the true story of Korean revolutionary Kim San (Jang Jirak), who left colonized Korea as a teenager to fight against Japanese imperialism and fought alongside Mao’s Red Army during the Chinese Revolution. First published in 1941, this remarkably intimate memoir (as told to the American journalist Nym […]

Korea Witness: 135 Years of War, Crisis and News in the Land of the Morning Calm

Publisher description: This book follows the long journey of correspondents who have passed through Korea. Since the first of them, photographer Felice Beato, arrived in 1871 with American troops invading Kangwha Island, foreign journalists have puzzled over this land, as complicated and fascinating now as 135 years ago. Famed author Jack London grappled with a […]

The Dawn of Modern Korea: the transformation in life and cityscape

Publisher description: The 20th century was a time of great changes for any country, but in Korea these changes were especially dramatic. In 1960, it was one of the world’s poorest countries. By 2000 it transformed itself into one of the world’s largest economies. This astonishing transformation completely changed Koreans’ daily life as well. This […]

Korean Art from 1953: Collision, Innovation, Interaction

Publisher description: Starting with the armistice that divided the Korean Peninsula in 1953, this one-of-a-kind book spotlights the artistic movements and collectives that have flourished and evolved throughout Korean culture over the past seven decades – from the 1950s avant-garde through to the feminist scene in the 1970s, the birth of the Gwangju Biennale in […]

20 Years 20 Days: Reflections from Prison

Exact publication date not known. Visit the publisher’s website for up-to-date info Reflections from Prison is a collection of  letters and essays from renowned Korean thinker Shin Young-Bok written during his 20 years as a political prisoner under the military government. ​The letters range from post cards to tiny characters squeezed onto his Army Prison daily […]