2020.08.15 (토)

  • 흐림속초28.8℃
  • 비25.2℃
  • 흐림철원26.2℃
  • 흐림동두천24.7℃
  • 흐림파주24.8℃
  • 흐림대관령21.7℃
  • 박무백령도24.2℃
  • 비북강릉24.6℃
  • 흐림강릉25.7℃
  • 흐림동해24.7℃
  • 비서울25.3℃
  • 비인천25.0℃
  • 흐림원주24.3℃
  • 흐림울릉도29.4℃
  • 비수원25.7℃
  • 흐림영월26.9℃
  • 흐림충주27.3℃
  • 흐림서산26.2℃
  • 흐림울진28.3℃
  • 구름많음청주29.5℃
  • 구름많음대전29.7℃
  • 구름많음추풍령29.4℃
  • 구름많음안동29.8℃
  • 구름많음상주30.7℃
  • 구름조금포항32.7℃
  • 구름많음군산28.8℃
  • 맑음대구33.1℃
  • 구름많음전주30.0℃
  • 구름조금울산31.9℃
  • 맑음창원30.2℃
  • 구름많음광주29.4℃
  • 구름조금부산28.8℃
  • 구름조금통영29.0℃
  • 구름많음목포29.4℃
  • 맑음여수28.6℃
  • 맑음흑산도29.6℃
  • 맑음완도29.6℃
  • 구름많음고창29.7℃
  • 맑음순천30.4℃
  • 흐림홍성(예)28.7℃
  • 맑음제주35.7℃
  • 구름조금고산29.3℃
  • 맑음성산31.5℃
  • 구름조금서귀포28.9℃
  • 맑음진주30.7℃
  • 흐림강화24.5℃
  • 흐림양평24.5℃
  • 흐림이천25.4℃
  • 흐림인제25.1℃
  • 흐림홍천24.4℃
  • 흐림태백25.7℃
  • 흐림정선군24.0℃
  • 흐림제천25.8℃
  • 구름많음보은28.0℃
  • 흐림천안28.4℃
  • 흐림보령28.1℃
  • 흐림부여28.5℃
  • 구름많음금산30.2℃
  • 흐림28.5℃
  • 구름많음부안29.7℃
  • 구름많음임실26.9℃
  • 구름많음정읍29.3℃
  • 구름많음남원29.5℃
  • 구름많음장수27.4℃
  • 구름많음고창군30.3℃
  • 구름많음영광군29.5℃
  • 구름조금김해시31.4℃
  • 구름많음순창군29.4℃
  • 맑음북창원30.4℃
  • 맑음양산시31.3℃
  • 맑음보성군30.2℃
  • 맑음강진군30.1℃
  • 맑음장흥30.4℃
  • 맑음해남29.5℃
  • 맑음고흥29.2℃
  • 맑음의령군30.9℃
  • 구름많음함양군30.0℃
  • 구름조금광양시29.6℃
  • 구름조금진도군30.2℃
  • 흐림봉화27.0℃
  • 흐림영주26.9℃
  • 구름많음문경30.0℃
  • 구름많음청송군29.8℃
  • 구름많음영덕30.8℃
  • 구름많음의성31.4℃
  • 구름조금구미31.6℃
  • 맑음영천31.5℃
  • 맑음경주시32.8℃
  • 구름조금거창30.4℃
  • 맑음합천30.2℃
  • 맑음밀양31.3℃
  • 구름조금산청29.6℃
  • 맑음거제28.5℃
  • 맑음남해30.2℃
기상청 제공
[Meeting Korean Culture Abroad]
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국악계뉴스

[Meeting Korean Culture Abroad]

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Korean Literature Stands at Center of Attentionamong Publishers Overseas

This year’s Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award (ALMA) drew as many as 240 candidates from 67 countries, but the award ceremony had to be held online due to the COVID-19 pandemic. When Korean picture book artist Baek Heena was announced as winner of the world’s largest children’s literature award, journalists glued to the event’s video feed immediately went about spreading the news. Established by the Swedish government, ALMA is recognized as the world’s most authoritative award in the field of children’s literature. The award not only brought honor to the author herself, it also represented a significant feat for the entire publishing community in Korea, as the nation’s literature had previously received little attention in northern Europe.


When talking about literary events that kindled global interest in Korean literature, one cannot omit Han Kang’s The Vegetarian, which won the 2016 Man Booker International Prize. Ever since, Korean literary works have repeatedly emerged as candidates for overseas literary awards. In 2017, Pyun Hye-young’s novel The Hole received the American Shirley Jackson Award, and a year later, novelist Hwang Sok-yong’s At Dusk won the French Emile Guimet Prize for Asian Literature. Publication rights of Kim Un-su’s The Plotters have been sold to publishers in a score of countries after critics described the novel as fresh and detailed. In January 2019, the novel was included in a list of "Best Winter Thrillers” by the New York Times. Seo Mi-ae’s The Only Child has been published in 14 countries, adding to the popularity of Korean thrillers.


Foreign publishers, having noticed the literary and commercial value of Korean literature, are making moves to incorporate it into their catalogues. For Kim Hye-jin’s novel Concerning My Daughter, which deals with homosexuality, three publishers vied for publication rights in Britain alone. The British Asia Literary Agency mediates the publication of Korean literary works through contracts with Bae Suah, Cheon Myeong-kwan, and Han Yujoo. British daily The Guardian commented on Bae Suah’s Untold Night and Day, a novel published in Britain earlier this year: "To a westerner, the 'Koreanness’ of Untold Night and Day is ever-present. Seoul is brought to life, with its elevated highways, narrow alleyways and blazing heat.” All these developments demonstrate that global interest in Korea, triggered by Hallyu, the Korean wave, is spreading to literature.


One of Korean literature’s greatest strengths is its subtle and exquisite way of dealing with universal social problems. Han Kang’s Human Acts found great success in Sweden, earning high acclaim for speaking on such universal subjects as violence and trauma through the Korean context of the Gwangju democratization movement. Cho Nam-ju, author of the novel Kim Jiyoung, Born 1982, received enthusiastic responses from readers in China, Japan, and Taiwan for its portrayal of feminism in everyday life at a time when a wave of feminist literature was sweeping the world. German daily Die Tageszeitung, commonly referred to as taz, analyzed that Korean writers deal with social problems as they are, with simple and understated expression. Korean literature has begun to form a pillar of Hallyu, following pop music, TV series, and movies. Korean authors tell stories that are Korean yet universally relatable.


Written by Kim Moonyoung