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The Brooklyn Book Festival


For celebrating the 10th anniversary of Korean Literature Now, English-language quarterly magazine for the promotion of Korean literature, the Literature Translation Institute of Korea (LTI Korea) participated in the Brooklyn Book Festival from September 10 to 17.

On September 12, LTI Korea co-hosted the ‘Literature and Resistance in Asia’ event with the Asian American Writers’ Workshop (AAWW). The event was moderated by former New Yorker reporter Tammy Kim, and featured poet Song Kyung-dong and author Hwang Jungeun, as well as poet and St. Olaf College professor Jennifer Kwon Dobbs. Song gave readings from his poems “99% Versus 1%” and “Beyond Boundaries”, and Hwang from her novel Savage Alice. The readings were followed by a discussion on the theme of literature and resistance, and a question and answer session with the audience. The Korean writers Song and Hwang gave an interview with the AAWW literary magazine ahead of the event, which will be published alongside the English translation of Song’s  “The Sea’s Interrogation Room.”

On September 13, Columbia University hosted a Korean literature event moderated by Professor Theodore Hughes of the university’s Department of Korean Studies. Song and Hwang featured as guests and discussed the many forms of resistance in their works, from labor movements to democratization and women’s rights. The writers had in-depth conversations with the students in attendance about the way literature should respond to real problems. The event closed with an autograph session.

The September 15 literary event took place at the Queens Library in New York as part of the bookend event for the Brooklyn Book Festival. Moderated by Professor Ryu Youngju, the event brought together the writers and audience for a discussion on the theme of literature and resistance. Song and Hwang spoke from Korean perspectives about labor movements and the violence of everyday language respectively. US writer Alexander Chee highlighted LGBT rights, and poet John Freeman gave a presentation on environmental protection and civil society. Audiences had the opportunity to expand their horizons and learn more about the politics, societies, and cultures of Korea and the US through the contexts of resistance introduced at the event. Coverage of the session is scheduled to be published in the winter 2018 issue of Korean Literature Now.

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