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Korean Diaspora Literature Essay Contest calls for submissions

Poster for the 5th Korean Diaspora Literature Essay Contest (Literature Translation Institute of Korea)
Poster for the 5th Korean Diaspora Literature Essay Contest (Literature Translation Institute of Korea)
The Literature Translation Institute of Korea (LTI Korea) is calling for submissions for this year’s Korean Diaspora Literature Essay Contest to expand the base of literary exchange through discovering and supporting writers of Korean diaspora literature.

The writing contest will be based on 25 essays, novels, and poems written by people of Korean ancestry living in Central Asia, Europe, Japan, the US and North Korean defectors chosen by LTI Korea.

“Diaspora literature exists thanks to the contributions of readers and writers carrying on their lives in many parts and regions of the world. Literature has a universal value, which spreads beyond the Korean Peninsula,“ Seo Hyoung-bom, manager of LTI Korea’s literary research team told The Korea Herald.

Seo said that each of the 25 works has its own purpose, and will attract readers in different ways.

“Through the four contests held so far, one noticeable phenomenon was that readers are less used to literary pieces written by ethnic Koreans in Russia and China, and therefore tend to prefer works from Japan, Europe, and the US,” Seo said.

This year’s contest marks the fifth round held by the institute, which supports and funds multilingual translations of overseas Korean literary works and publishes reference materials on Korean diaspora literature.

The contest will be divided into youth and adult divisions. Essays for the adult division should be 5,000 words, or 25 pages in length, and for the youth division, 3,000 words, or 15 pages.

The contest is open to both domestic and international participants, with the exception of those enrolled in doctoral programs in literature. A panel of six judges comprising literary critics and researchers will evaluate the submitted works.

Winners will be given cash prizes and certificates, while the selected works will be archived into a source book.

The list of the 25 works and information on applications can be found at www.diasporabook.or.kr. Essay entries are accepted through Aug. 31.

By Kim Hae-yeon (hykim@heraldcorp.com)
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