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Moscow International Book Fair

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 The Literature Translation Institute of Korea (LTI Korea) (President: Kim Seong-kon) took part in the 2017 Moscow International Book Fair (MIBF) from September 6 to 10. Korean poet Oh Sae-young and novelist Cho Hae-jin participated in the event. LTI Korea also held an event celebrating the Russian publication of Oh Sae-young’s poetry anthology <Cheonnyeonui Jam (A Thousand-Year Sleep)> by publishing house AST, and arranged a reading of <Rogiwaneul Mannadda (I Met Roh Gi-wan)> by Cho Hae-jin at the book fair. LTI Korea’s participation in this event was made possible thanks to the cooperation of many partners, including the Korean Cultural Center in Russia.

 

 The reading of Oh’s poetry took place at the AST booth at 11AM on the 9th, to a packed house. The event was hosted by an AST emcee. Oh began by reading his poetry in Korean, and was followed by co-translator 포가다예바 with a reading in Russian. The audience was captivated by the readings, with some attendees even noting their favorites and giving their own readings on the spot. The event was a resounding success, evidenced by the long lineup at Oh’s table at the autograph session that followed.

 

 Readings of Cho’s novel also took place on the same day at the MIBF literary salon at noon. Cho’s event was also popular, with some audience members having to stand in the back because there were not enough seats. The event was emceed by Professor Lee Sang-Yun of Saint Petersburg State University, and began with a reading in Korean by Cho followed by a Russian reading by Professor Irina Kasatkina of Moscow State University. The event provided participants a chance to experience the novel together as writer and audience. At the end of the event, one of the audience members even presented Cho with a portrait of her, bringing the proceedings to a heartwarming close. Cho’s autograph session also boasted a long lineup, and required her to continue the session at a different location because of the number of people waiting for her autograph.

 

 The popularity of the two Korean writers was further boosted by the book review published in the Literaturnaya Gazeta during the book fair. Literary journalist 갈끼나 발레리야 makes mention of co-translator 아나스타시아 포가다예바’s confession of being ‘captivated by the poetry of Oh Sae-young’ in the foreword of <Cheonnyeonui Jam (A Thousand-Year Sleep)> and agrees wholeheartedly, explaining that Oh’s poetry ‘captures our hearts with their warm but deep contemplation’. She also discusses <Rogiwaneul Mannadda (I Met Roh Gi-wan)> by Cho Hae-jin, remarking that ‘the characters’ thought processes are true to life, leaving readers with the strong impression Roh Gi-hwan and the other characters might have been real people they met in the past’.​

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