Literature of Modern and Contemporary Korea
EAST ASIAN LANGUAGES & CULTURES 352
This undergraduate course surveys the major writers and works of 20th century Korean literature. During the 20th century Korea went through a radical process of modernization. From its colonization by Japan, to its suffering of a civil war within the cold war order, to its growth into a cultural and economic powerhouse, Korea's historical experience is at once unique and typical of that of a third-world nation. By immersing ourselves in the most distinctive literary voices from Korea, we examine how the Korean experience of modernization was filtered through its cultural production. In class discussion, we pay special attention to the writers' construction of the self and the nation. How do social categories such as ethnicity, class, gender, and race figure in the varying images of the self? And how do these images relate to the literary vision of the nation? Along the way, we observe the prominent ideas, themes, and genres of Korean literature. This class combines discussion with lecture with students strongly encouraged to participate. All literary texts are in English translation and no previous knowledge of Korean is required.
Course Attributes: EN H; BU Eth; BU IS; AS HUM; AS LCD; AS SD I; FA HUM; AR HUM