Member Blogs > Books Tell You WhyPast and Future in Han Kang's Fiction

  • Sat, 09 Sep 2017 08:00:00    Permalink
    Past and Future in Han Kang's Fiction

    You might have heard of Han Kang, and maybe you’ve read the English translation of her novel The Vegetarian (the book was published in the original Korean in 2007 with the English translation by Deborah Smith following eight years later in 2015). We’re guessing you might have at least heard of The Vegetarian since it won the 2016 Man Booker International Prize for Fiction. The novel feels, in some ways, like a work of dystopian fiction in that it follows a woman who becomes a vegetarian after experiencing violent, bloody impulses all through a narration by her husband. Threads of futuristic writing may run through Han Kang’s fiction, but her work is also deeply permeated by the past. Her most recent novel, Human Acts, reflects upon the Gwanju massacre and its meaning for Korea in the present.

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