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Korean novelists to visit London

Korean novelists Cheon Myeong-gwan and Han Yu-joo will be discussing Korean society and literature in London from May 10-13.

The two writers will be participating in an event celebrating the spring issue of Asia Literary Review, a Hong Kong-based quarterly literary journal which aims to spread Asian literature in English-speaking countries.

The entire spring issue, published in April, is dedicated to introducing Korean literature, carrying translated excerpts from works by Korean novelists such as Cheon, Han, Kim Ae-ran, Kim Sa-gwa, and poets Kim Kyung-ju and Kim Min-jeong. 

Cover of the April issue of Asia Literary Review (LTI Korea)
Cover of the April issue of Asia Literary Review (LTI Korea)

Also included is an essay on translating Korean literature by Deborah Smith, who translated Han Kang’s “The Vegetarian,” which was recently shortlisted for the Man Booker International Prize, into English.

The Literary Translation Institute of Korea, which, along with the Culture Ministry, supported Asia Literary Review’s publication of Korean works, said that the journal’s managing editor Phillip Kim and editor-in-chief Martin Alexander had noted that the featured works would give foreigners a rare insight into Korean society.

LTI Korea began collaborating with Asia Literary Review last September and novelist Lee Eung-jun’s “The Private Life of a Nation” was included in the review’s November edition.

The London event is hosted by University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies, the Korean Cultural Center UK and the nonprofit organization Asia House. It will take place at the offices of each organization.

By Rumy Doo (