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Shifting Coordinates of Nativist (Hyangt’o) Aesthetics: The Colonial Rural in South Korea’s Literary Film Adaptations

Shifting Coordinates of Nativist (Hyangt’o) Aesthetics: The Colonial Rural in South Korea’s... This article examines South Korea’s cinematic adaptation of the colonial literature, more specifically the short fiction of nativist (鄕土, hyangt’o) aesthetics. It begins with a brief survey of literary art film (文藝映畵, munye yŏnghwa), which emerged as a film cycle of the 1960s, and raises questions about interpretive issues in reading postcolonial films. In short, I claim that the literary film adaptations of the 1960s show a new, colonial, rural “imaginary” particular to South Korea’s cultural production. On the surface, they appear to register a return to the colonial nativist sensibility. However, they mark a clear shift in focus toward the area of communal interaction and the social dynamics of information sharing. This article attempts to discern and articulate new thematic preoccupations and tendencies as well as their implications to a nationalist view toward the Colonial Period. In addition, it historicizes the cinematic version of nativist aesthetics by relating its development to the larger concern of the cinematic form and the history of colonial representation. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of Korean Studies Duke University Press

Shifting Coordinates of Nativist (Hyangt’o) Aesthetics: The Colonial Rural in South Korea’s Literary Film Adaptations

Journal of Korean Studies , Volume 20 (2) – Sep 15, 2015

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Copyright
Copyright © 2015 by the Trustees of Columbia University in the City of New York
ISSN
0731-1613
eISSN
2158-1665
DOI
10.1353/jks.2015.0022
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This article examines South Korea’s cinematic adaptation of the colonial literature, more specifically the short fiction of nativist (鄕土, hyangt’o) aesthetics. It begins with a brief survey of literary art film (文藝映畵, munye yŏnghwa), which emerged as a film cycle of the 1960s, and raises questions about interpretive issues in reading postcolonial films. In short, I claim that the literary film adaptations of the 1960s show a new, colonial, rural “imaginary” particular to South Korea’s cultural production. On the surface, they appear to register a return to the colonial nativist sensibility. However, they mark a clear shift in focus toward the area of communal interaction and the social dynamics of information sharing. This article attempts to discern and articulate new thematic preoccupations and tendencies as well as their implications to a nationalist view toward the Colonial Period. In addition, it historicizes the cinematic version of nativist aesthetics by relating its development to the larger concern of the cinematic form and the history of colonial representation.

Journal

Journal of Korean StudiesDuke University Press

Published: Sep 15, 2015

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