The London Book Fair Korea Market Focus 2014: Allegory and the Literary Imagination

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Yi Mun-yol and Marina Warner; Chaired byChristopher MacLehouse

How do myth, allegory and fable illustrate history and society? What imaginative tools do they give writers, and do such stories have the power to be socially transformative? We welcome Yi Mun-yol for an exploration of fable in contemporary fiction: its response to social injustice, ideology and history in Korean writing.

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Date: Wednesday 9 April, 13.00-14.00
Venue: Whitehall Room, Earls Court

Yi Mun-yol was born in 1948. He made his debut as a novelist in 1979. Yi’s works were enriched by the classics of East Asia that he had naturally become familiar with during his childhood and the western literature that he had voraciously devoured in his young adulthood. In The Son of Man, Yi questioned the relationship between man and god; in A Portrait of Youthful Days, he portrayed the struggle and anguish of his youth. The Golden Phoenix was an exploration of the ontological meaning of art using calligraphy, a traditional art form in Korea. Yi also has consistently published works that are critical to the nature of political power. Our Twisted Hero is an allegorical depiction of the mechanism of the operation of political power; Homo Executants portrays the process through which political ideology suffocates humanity. Aside from these, his works include Hail to the EmperorThe Age of HeroesChoice andThe Immortality. The recipient of Korean’s Yi highest literary prizes, Yi has been published in over twenty countries including the United States, France, Great Britain, Germany; over 60 titles of his translated works are available.

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