Writing Herself: Resistance, Rebellion, and Revolution in Korean Women's Lyric Poetry, 1925--2012
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CitationChoi, Jung Ja. 2014. Writing Herself: Resistance, Rebellion, and Revolution in Korean Women's Lyric Poetry, 1925--2012. Doctoral dissertation, Harvard University.
AbstractDespite a recent global surge in the reception and translation of Korean women poets, there has been surprisingly little scholarship on this topic. This dissertation aims to expand the focus of Western scholarship beyond the Korean male canon by providing the first in-depth analysis of the works of Korean women poets in the 20th and 21st centuries. The poets I chose to examine for this study played a critical role in revolutionizing traditional verse patterns and in integrating global socio-political commentary into modern Korean poetry. In particular, by experimenting widely with forms from epic narrative, memoir in verse, and shamanic narration to epistolary verse and avant-garde styles, they opened up new possibilities for Korean women's lyric poetry. In addition, they challenged the traditional notion of lyric poetry as simply confessional, emotional, passive, or feminine. Their poetry went beyond the commonplace themes of nature, love, and longing, engaging with socio-political concerns such as racial, class, and gender discrimination, human rights issues, and the ramifications of the greatest calamities of the 20th century, including the Holocaust, the Korean War, and the Kwangju Uprising. Unlike the dominant scholarship that tends to highlight the victimization of women and their role as passive observers, this project shows Korean women poets as active chroniclers of public memory and vital participants in global politics and literature. The multifaceted and detailed reading of their work in this dissertation facilitates a more nuanced understanding of the complexity of 20th-and 21st-century women's lives in Korea.
Citable link to this pagehttp://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:13070020
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