Vol.59 Spring 2023
How to mourn, how to write the language of loss? How to mark the deaths forgotten and names erased? How does literature engage in the critical analysis of disasters and calamities? Though Jean Baudrillard once said, “You have to take your time” for the condition of analysis of tragedy, writers often become the firsthand reporters of reality, filling out the traumatized silence, reforming the deformations of language. This issue, through the painstaking writings of Jang Mi-do, Sung Hyunah, and Jeon Seung-min, reflects the very site of loss and grief. Figuring out the space for mourning, they offer a symbolic system of interpretation after numerous tragedies. The Featured Writer of this issue is Kim Yeonsu, a prolific, blessed writer of our age. In his Interview, he talks about what it means to write every single day. This is followed by critic Cho Yeonjung’s insightful essay on Kim’s work. In the Bookmark section, we feature short stories by Kim Ji Yeon and Chung So-hyun and poems by Eins Hwang and An Taewoon. The Inkstone section brings our readers to the third and final part of Minsoo Kang’s translation of “The Story of Jeon Unchi,” which highlights the wit and mystery of this ancient story. In our Review section, our readers can catch a quick glimpse of the wide landscape of Korean literature with the English translation of the poet Shin Yong-mok’s Concealed Words, the Chinese translation of Bora Chung’s Cursed Bunny, the Polish translation of Yun Ko Eun’s The Disaster Tourist, the Vietnamese translation of the poet Do Jong-hwan’s Between Three and Five O’Clock, and the Turkish translation of Jeong You Jeong’s Seven Years of Darkness.
— Eun-Gwi Chung, Editorial Board Member, KLN