Poet Kim Hyesoon (김혜순) goes up on Wikipedia (in advance of probable publication in ALR)

KTLIT LogoI don’t normally “do” poets, but the Asia Literary Review is publishing an All-Korean volume next month, and Kim Hyesoon is likely to be published in it. In expectation of that happening, I thought it would be useful to have something up on the Wikipedia. It is here,and it looks a little like this (obviously, more work to be done!)

Kim Hyesoon

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Kim Hyesoon
Occupation Novelist
Nationality South Korea
Period 1955-present
This is a Korean name; the family name is .

Kim Hyesoon (born 1955) (Hangul: 김혜순) is a South Korean poet.




In 1955 Kim Hyesoon was born in Uljin, Gyeongsangbuk-do. She received her Ph.D. in Korean Literature from Konkuk University and began as a poet in 1979 with the publication of Poet Smoking a Cigarette (Dambaereul piuneun siin) and four other poems in Literature and Intellect.[1] Kim is an important contemporary poets in South Korea, and she lives in Seoul and teaches creative writing at the Seoul Institute of the Arts. Kim was in the forefront of women published in a literary journal, Munhak kwa jisŏng (Literature and Intellect).[2]


Kim started to receive critical acclaim in the late 1990’s and it is her own belief that her work was partly recognized because at that time there was a generally strong wave of women’s poets and poetry. [3] Kim is the recipient of multiple literary prizes. In 1992 Kim won the Sowol Poetry Literature Award and 1996 she won the Kim Suyeong Literature Award for her poem, Pitiful Love Machine (Bulssanghan sarang gigye). [4]. She also won the Kim Su-yŏng (1998) and Midang (2006) awards, which are named after two major contemporary poets. Kim’s poetry collections include, On Another Star (Tto dareun byeoreseo), The Scarecrow My Father Erected (Abeojiga se-un heosuabi), Hell on Certain Star (Eoneu byeorui jiok), Please Look, Calendar Factory Manager (Dallyeok gongjangjangnim boseyo) and My Upanishad, Seoul (Naui upanisyadeu, Seoul). Kims skill as a writer resides in her facility at combining poetic images with experimental language while simultaneously grounding her work in ‘feminine writing’ drawn from female experiences. [5] Her language is exaggerated, violent and linguistically agile, appropriate for her topics which often center on death and/or injustice. [6] Many times, Kim’s poetry is marked by the color of blood, as in “red baby,”“red embryonic fluid,”and “red dew.” [7]

Works in English

Mommy Must be a Fountain of Feathers ISBN-10: 0979975514

Anxiety of Words (Collection with other authors): ISBN-10: 0939010879

All the Garbage of the World, Unite!: ISBN-10: 0983148015

When the Plug Gets Unplugged

Works in Korean (Partial)

Tto tarŭn pyŏl esŏ (From Another Star), Munhak kwa chisŏng sa, Seoul, 1981
Abŏjiga seun hŏsuabi (Father’s Scarecrow), Munhak kwa chisŏng sa, Seoul, 1985
Ŏnŭ pyŏl ŭi chiok (The Hell of a Certain Star), Ch’ŏngha Seoul, 1988. Reprinted by Munhakdongnae, 1997
Uridŭl ŭi ŭmhwa (Our Negative), Munhak kwa chisŏng sa, Seoul, 1991
Na ŭi up’anisyadŭ, Sŏul (Seoul, my Upanishad), Munhak kwa chisŏng sa, Seoul, 1994
Pulssanghan sarang kigye (Poor Love Machine), Munhak kwa chisŏng sa, Seoul, 1997
Talyŏk kongjang kongjang jangnim poseyŏ (Calendar Factory Supervisor), Munhak kwa chisŏng sa, Seoul, 2000
Han chan ŭi pulgŭn kŏul (A Glass of Red Wine), Munhak kwa chisŏng sa, Seoul, 2004
Tangshin ŭi ch’ŏt (Your First), Munhak kwa chisŏng sa, Seoul, 2008


  1. ^ LTI Korea Author Database:
  2. ^ South Korea – Poetry International Web:
  3. ^ South Korea – Poetry International Web:
  4. ^ LTI Korea Author Database:
  5. ^ South Korea – Poetry International Web:
  6. ^ South Korea – Poetry International Web:
  7. ^ Kim HyeSoon, Korean Literature Translation Institute, p.1

External links

Several of Kim’s poems are translated here at the South Korea – Poetry International Web
Review of Kim Hyesoon’s poetry as well as the poetry written by her translator Don Mee Choi.
Interview with Kim Hyesoon in Guernica Review of Kim Hyesoon’s Mommy Must be a Fountain of Feathers