Poet Go Eun (Ko Un) Leads the Translation Charge

An interesting article from Han Cinema

Ko Un

Ko Un

The Korean author whose works were introduced overseas the most is poet Go Eun. ….. 51 books by Go have been published or are scheduled to come out abroad.

His poem collections such as “Maninbo”, “Momentary Flower”, “Hwaeomgyeong”, “South and North Korea”, and others have been introduced to foreign readers in 15 different languages.

Fourteen of them were translated into English, seven into German, six into Spanish and four into Swedish.

This means that Go/Ko (folks, can we please agree on Romanization some time before the world ends?) has now surpassed previous champ Yi Munyol whose count is 50 books in 16 languages.

5 thoughts on “Poet Go Eun (Ko Un) Leads the Translation Charge

  1. Speaking of writers, is this group active?

    They might be another group to contact.

    They at least are interested enough to be part of a global group of writers.

  2. Charles,

    I don’t know about PEN.. they used to do all kinds of things here (many of the old translations were commissioned by PEN. I’ll have to drop by the office and see what’s up.

  3. Charles,

    There is quite a bit of it, and it seems a small but successful sliver of translated publishing. This is partly because children’s tales tend to be non-complex and thus more amenable to translation.

    This kind of translation, it occurs to me, would be a good “gateway drug” for younger children, though god knows (cranky old man says) how many of them will grow up to read anything?

    I know little about it, but Kyosunim Shin Jisun at Ehwa Womans University is an expert in it if any reader is interested.

    She can be found on the intarwebs (don’t want to post an email here!) for any readers who want to follow up.

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