Trena Gillette Memorial Lecture : What Is Korean Literature? - Speaker Bruce Fulton
Tuesday, April 16, 2019 - 6:00pm
Annual Trena Gillette Memorial lecture

What Is Korean Literature? 

Bruce Fulton , Young-Bin Min Chair in Korean Literatureand Literary Translation ,Department of Asian Studies, University of British Columbia


Tuesday, April 16, 2019
6:00 PM

Smith Memorial Student Union RM 238

Open & Free for the public!

About the Lecture

At a time when Korean Studies scholarship seems intent on “interrogating,”“contesting,” “asserting,” and “problematizing,” it has become all too easy to lose sight of the
millennia-old Korean literary tradition and its potential for continuing to inform Korean cultural expression in the new millennium. In this presentation I wish to emphasize the powers of endurance
of a literary tradition that is equal parts oral, local, lyric, and performative on the one hand, and recorded (primarily in Chinese until the modern era), cosmopolitan, and conceptual on the other. The Korean literature tradition has always been distinctly intertextual, and in the new millennium it is increasingly intermedial as well. “Kashiri” (Will You Go?), for example, a song that dates back to the Koryŏ period (935-1392), is the prototype for modern Korea’s best-loved poem, “Chindallae kkot” (1922, Azaleas) and by now appears in no less than 50 Korean popular song incarnations. Scholars may differ in their understanding of what constitutes Korean literature, but most would agree that the Korean literary tradition is by virtue of its dual origins in oral and recorded literature uniquely positioned to open a window onto Korean culture, thought, spirituality, and history.





About the Speaker:

Bruce Fulton is a former U.S. Peace Corps volunteer in Korea and the inaugural holder of the Young-Bin Min Chair in Korean Literature and Literary Translation, Department of Asian Studies, University of British Columbia. He is co-editor of Modern Korean Fiction (Columbia University Press); co-recipient of the first National Endowment for the Arts Translation Fellowship for a Korean literary work; and the recipient of the Manhae Grand Prize in Literature. His most recent translations, with Ju-Chan Fulton, are the graphic novel Moss by Yoon Taeho (serialized at the Huffington Post), Sunset: A Ch’ae Manshik Reader (Columbia University Press), and Mina by Kim Sagwa (Two Lines Press).


Learn more about the Annual Trena Gillette Memorial lecture



Sponsored by the

PSU Institute for Asian Studies

The Trena Gillette Memorial Lecture Fund

For more information, contact:
The PSU Institute for Asian Studies
tel. 503-725-8576