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The New Asian CityThree-Dimensional Fictions of Space and Urban Form$
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Jini Kim Watson

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780816675722

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816675722.001.0001

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The Redemptive Realism of Korean Minjung Literature

The Redemptive Realism of Korean Minjung Literature

(p.227) 7 The Redemptive Realism of Korean Minjung Literature
The New Asian City

Jini Kim Watson

University of Minnesota Press

This chapter looks at the Korean minjung literature and the work of Hwang Sŏk-yŏng as a response to dictator Park Chung Hee’s prescriptions for national productivity and growth. It reviews Hwang’s short story Longing for the North, a Far and Desolate Place, which gives account of the plight of a young man who tries to fulfill his mother’s dying wish to be buried with his father. Hwang’s story provides understanding of the communal and redemptive nature of minjung and encapsulates the concept of unfulfilled longing or regret. The chapter concludes with an outline of the forms of national infrastructure through which material and ideological debates are staged.

Keywords:   Korean minjung literature, Hwang Sŏk-yŏng, Park Chung Hee, national productivity, Longing for the North, a Far and Desolate Place, national infrastructure

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