The 16th Hahn Moo-Sook Colloquium

in the Korean Humanities

Tradition and Modernity in Korean Literature

the Work of Hahn Moo-Sook (1918-1993)


Saturday, November 8, 2008, 9:00 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Harry Harding Auditorium

1957 E Street, NW, Washington, DC 20052


Saturday, November 8, 2008




"tradition and modernity in korean literature: the work of Hahn Moo-Sook"



8:45-9:15                 Coffee and Pastry


9:15-9:25                 Welcoming Remarks, S. Robert Ramsey


9:25-9:40                 Video Presentation


Session I                 Young-Key Kim-Renaud, Chair

9:40-10:15               Yim Hunyoung, “Cognizance of Korean History in Hahn Moo-Sook’s Literature


10:15-10:50             Chan E Park, Flow and Irony: Locating Literary Modernity in Hahn Moo-Sook’s Retrospective Gazes


10:50-11:00             Break


Session II               R. Richard Grinker, Chair


11:00-11:35             Philippe Thiébault, Hahn Moo-Sook’s Call for ‘True’ Humanity: Meditation with Tasan Chŏng Yag-Yong in her Novel Encounter 


11:35-12:05             Commentary


Hyangsoon Yi

Don Baker

Young-chan Ro      


Session III             Gregg Brazinsky, Chair


12:05-12:30             General Discussion


12:30                       Lunch at Lindner Family Commons on the 6th fl. Korean food is provided.




Welcoming Remarks


S. Robert Ramsey is Director of the Center for East Asian Studies at the University of Maryland. He is Professor of Japanese and East Asian Linguistics and Chair of the Department of Asian and East European Languages and Cultures; School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures. Ramsey received his Ph.D. in linguistics from Yale University in 1975. He specializes in East Asian linguistics, historical linguistics and sociolinguistics, Japanese linguistics, and Korean linguistics. His publications include (as editor) a Special Issue in Honor of Samuel E. Martin, Japanese Language and Literature (2004); and (with Iksop Lee) The Korean Language (2000). Ramsey's other works include: Accent and Morphology in Korean Dialects. Tower Press (Seoul) 1978; The Languages of China, Princeton University Press 1989; Chugoku no shogengo Taishukan Shoten (Tokyo), 1990.




Chan E. Park is Associate Professor of Korean Language, Literature, and Performance Studies at The Ohio State University. She received her PhD from University of Hawai‛i. Her specialization is research and performance of p’ansori, Korean story-singing, its performance in transnational context in particular, related oral narrative/lyrical/dramatic traditions, and their places in the shaping of modern Korean literature. Park’s publications include Voices from the Straw Mat: Toward and Ethnography of Korean Story Singing (University of Hawai‛i Press, 2003).


Philippe Thiébault is a visiting professor of Asian Studies at Sejong University. He received his Ph.D. from Sungkyunkwan University in East Asian Philosophy. He has taught courses on Chinese classics, Korean Philosophy, Comparative Ethics and East Asian Culture at Konkuk, Yonsei and Hanyang Universities in Korea, the University of Southern California, Louvain-la-Neuve in Belgium, and Lyon in France. He is the author of La Pensée Coréenne [Korean Thought] (Autres Temps, 2006), Confucius et le devenir-homme [Confucius and Becoming a True Man] (Louvain, 2007) and the translator into French of Mannam by Hahn Moo-Sook, Rencontre [Encounter] (Autres Temps, 2005), and of Mongminsimsŏ by Tasan, L’art de gouverner [The Art of Government] (Autres Temps, 2007). He held the Chiang Ching-Kuo Chair on Chinese Civilization for 001-2002 at Louvain-la-Neuve University.


Yim Hunyoung received a B.A. and an M.A. on Modern Korean Literature from Joongang University, where he currently teaches the subject as adjunct professor. He is the past President of the Association of Korean Literary Critics and the current president of the Institute for Research in Collaborationist Activities and also that of the World Korean Writers Network. He has served as the Executive Editor of various literary journals and magazines including Korean Literary Criticism, Books and Life, and Sees (Prelude). A prolific writer and literary critic, Yim is the author of han’guk hyŏndae munhak sasangsa [The History of Modern Literary Thought in Korea] (Han’gilsa, Seoul, 1988) and twenty other books and numerous articles and essays.




Don Baker teaches Korean history and religion in the Department of Asian Studies at the University of British Columbia. He received his Ph.D. in Korean history from the University of Washington. He is the author of Korean Spirituality (University of Hawai‛i Press, 2008) as well as numerous articles on Tasan Chŏng Yagyong, Korean religion, and traditional Korean science. He was a co-editor of the Sourcebook of Korean Civilization (Columbia University Press, 1993) and is also the author of Chosŏn hugi yugyo wa ch’ŏnjugyo ǔi taerip [The Confrontation between Confucianism and Catholicism in the Latter Half of the Chosŏn Dynasty] (Iljogak, 1997), a collection of ten of his articles on Korean history in Korean translation.    


Young-chan Ro is Associate Professor and Chair of the Religious Studies Department at George Mason University. He received his B.A from Yonsei University (Korea), an M.Th. from Union Theological Seminary, Richmond, VA, and his Ph.D. from the University of California, Santa Barbara. His research interests include History of Religion, Philosophy of Religion, Comparative Religion, Chinese Philosophies and Religious Traditions, Cross Cultural Study of Religions, East Asian Religions, Confucianism, Daoism, Mysticism and Religious Dialogue. Dr. Ro authored The Korean Neo-Confucianism of Yi Yulgok (SUNY Press, 1987) and co-authored The Four-Seven Debate: The Most Famous Controversy in Korean Neo-Confucianism (SUNY Press, 1995).


Hyangsoon Yi is Associate Professor of Comparative Literature at the University of Georgia where she teaches both Korean and comparative literature and Korean and Japanese cinema. She holds a Ph.D. in English from Pennsylvania State University and a Ph.D. in foreign language education from the University of Georgia. Her research areas include Korean literature and film, Irish drama, and Buddhist monasticism. Yi’s publications include Piguni wa han’guk munhak [Buddhist Nuns and Korean Literature] (Yemunsŏwŏn, Seoul, 2008).






Roy Richard Grinker is Professor of Anthropology and International Affairs, and Human Sciences at GW. He received his Ph.D. in Social Anthropology from Harvard University in 1989 with a specialization in African Studies. His publications include Houses in the Rainforest, Korea and Its Futures: Unification and the Unfinished War, In the Arms of Africa, and Perspectives on Africa: A Reader in Culture, History and Representation. He worked extensively on North-South Korean relations and in 1997 he testified before Congress on the issue of North Korean defectors' adaptation to South Korean society.  He is currently Editor-in-Chief of Anthropological Quarterly. His book, Unstrange Minds: Remapping the World of Autism (NY: Basic Books, 2007) was published in Korean as Natsŏlji anǔn kǔdǔl in Korea in early 2008.


Young-Key Kim-Renaud is Professor of Korean Language and Culture and International Affairs and Chair of the East Asian Languages and Literatures Department at GW. She received her Ph.D. in Linguistics from the University of Hawai‘i. A theoretical linguist with a broad interest in the Korean humanities and Asian affairs, she is Editor-in-Chief of Korean Linguistics, and serves on various Asia-related boards. Her publications include Creative Women of Korea: The Fifteenth to the Twentieth Century (M.E. Sharpe, 2004) and eight other books, numerous book chapters and journal articles. In 2006 Kim-Renaud received a Republic of Korea Jade Order of Cultural Merit. Most recently, she received the Bichumi Grand Award from Samsung Life Foundation as a Woman of the Year 2008 for Public Service.


Gregg Brazinsky is Associate Professor of History and International Affairs at GW.  Professor Brazinsky's first book, Nation Building in South Korea: Koreans, Americans and the Making of a Democracy, appeared in the fall of 2007 from the University of North Carolina Press. Professor Brazinsky is now pursuing research on the cultural impact of the Korean War in America, Korea and China and Sino-American competition in the Third World. He serves as Co-director of the George Washington University Cold War Group.




The HMS Colloquium in the Korean Humanities series at GW provides a forum for academic discussion of Korean arts, history, language, literature, thought and religious systems in the context of East Asia and the world. The Colloquium series is made possible by an endowment established by the estate of Hahn Moo-Sook (1918-1993), one of Korea’s most honored writers, in order to uphold her spirit of openness, curiosity, and commitment to education. The 16th  HMS colloquium is co-sponsored by GW’s Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, Sigur Center for Asian Studies, and Institute for Ethnographic Research.


The Colloquium is open to the public free of charge. However, reservations are required.


For more information, please contact:


Dr. Young-Key Kim-Renaud

Chair, Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures

The George Washington University

Washington, DC 20052

Tel: 202-994-7106/7107, Fax: 202-994-1512,


For  information on the location, please click here.


For a downloadable program, please click here.


For a downloadable poster, please click here.



The George 
Washington University

The George Washington University

Harry Harding Auditorium

The Elliott School of International Affairs

1957 E Street, NW, Room 213

Washington, DC 20052