Rediscovering Korean Literature – The Diversity of Contemporaneous Korean Literature (New York and Binghampton)

FROM THE KOREAN CULTURAL CENTER IN NEW YORK Something to check out if you’ll be in New York at the end of the month.

The Korean Literature Translation Institute (KLTI- director Joo Yeon Kim) will be hosting an upcoming KLTI US Forum on both October 25th and October 28th in Binghamton and New York City, New York.

The KLTI US Forum will be held at both State University of New York (SUNY), Binghamton and the Korean Cultural Service NY with respective themes Rediscovering Korean Literature – The Diversity of Contemporaneous Korean Literature and Meet the Authors.

At the east coast’s KLTI US Forum, the Korean authors Chonggi Mah (poet), Jiyoung Gong (novelist), and Woon Young Cheon (novelist) will be introduced to American readers. Poet, Chonggi Mah emigrated to the United States in 1966 to practice as a doctor, but has continued to prolifically compose poems relating to traditional Korean sentiments. He has written eleven poetry books and has published Eyes of the Dew, an English translated collection of poems. Novelist, Jiyoung Gong has published numerous bestsellers and of them My Sister Bongsoon was already translated into English. Currently her representative works, The Crucible and Our Happy Time, are in the process of being translated for an American audience. Novelist, Woon Young Cheon is considered a pioneer in portraying a new trend of womanhood in Korean literature in which Korean society is re-depicted in strong and introspective images. Her work, Needle, was featured in Harvard University’s AZAELA  and her book, Ginger, is in the process of being translated into English.

The first part of the east coast’s KLTI US Forum, titled Rediscovering Korean Literature – The Diversity of Contemporaneous Korean Literature, will be held at SUNY, Binghamton on October 25 (Tuesday) starting from 2:00 pm for about four hours.  Chonggi Mah, Jiyoung Gong (novelist), and Woon Young Cheon along with literary critic Kwang Ho Lee will be present to discuss  Korean literature with American scholars, publishers, and translators. Kwang Ho Lee will start the forum with a summary of contemporary Korean literature followed by presentations and discussions led by SUNY, Binghamton professors Michael J. Pettid (how literature from the post Chosun era influences contemporary Korean literature), David C. Stahl and Nicolas A. Kaldis (how literature from Taiwan and Japanese has entered the American market). In addition, translator and publisher, Robert E. Hawks, will explore into further detail about the current means and progress of Korean literature advancing into the American literary market.

The second part of the KLTI US Forum (east coast) will be held at the Korean Cultural Service NY on October 28 (Friday) from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm. The forum, Meet the Authors, will be a semi-casual literary event in which three Korean writers and two American writers, who all somehow incorporate Korea and its culture into their respective works, will be present. With participating authors Chonggi Mah, Jiyoung Gong, Woon Young Cheon, Susan Choi, and Ben Ryder Howe (author), the meeting aims to stimulate creative collaborations between writers and readers both from Korea and America. Susan Choi is the author of three novels: The Foreign Student (1998), which won the Asian-American Literary Award for fiction, American Woman (2003), a finalist for the 2004 Pulitzer Prize, and A Person of Interest (2008), a finalist for the 2009 PEN/Faulkner Award.  The Foreign Student  was selected as one of LA Times’ Best 10 Novels in the United States in 1998. Ben Ryder Howe’s of My Korean Deli: Risking it All for a Convenience Store (which was recently translated into Korean as well), is a memoir about how he and his wife (who is Korean American) purchased a deli in Brooklyn for his in-laws.

 

Contact: Yeonji Hwang
Korean Cultural Service NY Library
Tel: 212-759-9550(Ext. 203)
Email: yeonji@korenculture.org

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