Backed the Wrong Horse?
One of my favorite columnists, Professor Kim Seong-Kon (SNU, KLTI), recently lamented:
Koreans would be unlikely to select Yi Kwang-su for a list of great Korean writers . . . . To Korean eyes, . . . Yi betrayed the . . . country and thus can never be condoned, regardless of . . . importance and eminence as [a] writer . . . . I am saddened and ashamed that for these reasons, Koreans are often labeled . . . parochial and nationalistic (Kim Seong-Kon, "Embracing those who are different," Korea Herald, March 5, 2014).Regrettable, then, the fact that Sun-Ae and I chose to translate Yi Kwang-su's novel The Soil, as we will perhaps be forever linked to a 'traitor' . . .