This anthology presents well over a hundred Korean classical poems
known as shijo, in English translation. Shijo, a form of poetic
composition still very much alive, has a tradition spanning a
thousand years. One of the first historical anthologies of shijo in
English, this book offers an overview of that uniquely Korean
poetic legacy. Composed in the vernacular and written down in hang
l, the Korean phonograms, shijo asserts its national identity,
which hanshi, composed in the classical Chinese ideograms,
ostensibly may not. Sung-Il Lee's English rendition of shijo
captures the rhythmic flow of the original lines in Korean, while
remaining true to the sound quality and the poetic message
contained therein. Although the book is meant for the general
readers, students of Korean language and literature will find it
helpful, as it provides parallel texts-the Korean original and its
English rendition. About the translator: Sung-Il Lee was born in
1943 in Seoul, Korea. He studied English literature at Yonsei
University (B.A., 1967), the University of California at Davis
(M.A., 1973) and Texas Tech University (Ph.D., 1980), and taught at
Yonsei University (1981-2008). He also taught as a visiting
professor at the University of Toronto (1987), the University of
Washington (1994 1995), and Troy University (2002 2003). He is now
Professor Emeritus at Yonsei University. His publication includes
The Wind and the Waves: Four Modern Korean Poets (1989), The
Moonlit Pond: Korean Classical Poems in Chinese (1998), The Brush
and the Sword: Kasa, Korean Classical Poems in Prose (2009), Blue
Stallion: Poems of Yu Chi-whan (2011) and Beowulf and Four Related
Old English Poems: A Verse Translation with Explanatory Notes
(2010). He received the Republic of Korea Literary Award (1990) and
the Korean Literature Translation Award (1999), both given by the
Korean Culture and Arts Foundation.
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