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Friday, September 07, 2018

We are excited to announce the upcoming Magpie Series in Modern and Contemporary Korean Literature at Kaya Press!

The Magpie Series opens new horizons in Korean literature in English translation by introducing exciting new literary voices from Korea, past and present. The series includes literary fiction and compelling works from the world of South Korean science fiction, fantasy, and horror. We also incorporate the best of Korean graphic novels as part of the visual experience of literature. Magpie’s catalogue will be a reflexive picture of Korea and the breakneck speed of its changing interactions with the world.

Korean literature in English translation has expanded in recent years thanks to the dedicated efforts of translators and scholars, and the support of numerous private and governmental funding agencies. The Magpie Series is the passion project of Sunyoung Lee, the publisher of Kaya Press, and series editor Sunyoung Park, who is an associate professor of Korean literature at the University of Southern California. We are committed to providing our prospective writers and translators with expert editorial services and a deep level of commitment through all stages of the publishing process. Kaya Press and the Magpie Series are grounded in the belief that accomplished literary works deserve translation and a beautiful presentation in print. The series aims to set a new standard for the publication of Korean literature for the American and English-speaking markets.

As an inaugural event, we are happy to invite you to: “Migrant Voices Between Korea and China: Politics, Literature, and Translation in Kim San’s Song of Airang and Cheon Unyeong’s Farewell, Circus” 

September 7, 2018 at 3-5 PM, Doheney Memorial Library (DML 240); light refreshments will be served. 

The ethnic Korean minority in China have emerged in recent years as important political and cultural mediators between China and the two Koreas, while also growing more assertive of their own autonomous identity from all three East Asian nation-states. Timed with the inaugurations of the Magpie Series in Modern and contemporary Korea Literature at Kaya Press, this symposium brings together writers, academics, and cultural producers to reflect on the politics of historical and contemporary diaspora of the Korean Chinese and the literary translation of migrant voices. The event will center on two opening publications of Magpie Series: the expanded edition of Kim San and Nym Wale’s Song of Arirang, a biography of a Korean revolutionary in 1930s China, and the first English translation of Cheon Unyeong’s Fairwell, Circus, a rare novel about Korean-Chinese intermarriage.

This symposium will feature presentations by Choen Unyeong and Jinim Park, respectively writer and translater of Farewell, Circus, and by the editor of Song of Arirang, Prof. Dongyoun Hwang (Soka University). They will be joined by USC and UCLA faculty and student respondents.

This event is sponsored by the Daeson Foundation in Korea, Kaya Press, and several USC institutions: Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, Department of History, East Asian Studies Center, Korean Heritage Library, Korean Humanities Group, and Korean Studies Institute.

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“The most consistent intelligent wide-ranging committed press I know – Kaya is an example of how to turn ‘small’ books into literary arrows that shoot straight and true into the heart of our culture and (of course) ourselves.”

— Junot Díaz