Both Choicheokjeon and Kimyoungchuljeon show not only the characteristics of contents such as experience of war, separation of family, and life as a prisoner, but also a common feature of narrative that is converged into the main characters’ homecoming. Even though those two works are similar to each other, one shows the optimistic and romantic perception of the world, and the other shows the pessimistic perception of the world. This is originated from the placeness of hometown and foreign land.
In both works, the ‘foreign land’ is similarly shown as an external place that cannot be deeply assimilated. In Choicheokjeon, it shows the nature of ‘placelessness’ that does not realize the placeness at all. Just like Hangju of Choicheokjeon or Deungju of Kimyoungchuljeon, the inside of those places is experienced as a wanderer as the main characters’ identity is still aiming for the hometown. In case of Geonju of Kimyoungchuljeon, it is shown in the form of ‘topophobia’ of the land of death describing the pains of life as a prisoner.
Meanwhile, the images of ‘hometown’ are very conflicting in both works. In Choicheokjeon, all the separated family members get reunited in their hometown Namwon, and here, Namwon is shown as topophilia of the place for healing and restoration. Meanwhile, in Kimyoungchuljeon, the hometown is a place for suffering. Youngchul who was captive as a prisoner of war came back to his hometown for his ideological belief in which he should carry on his family line by going back home’. However, his hometown has been already devastated without any warm imageability. Thus, he is suffering from psychological and economic pains that are even worse than his life as a prisoner in China.
Eventually, the perception of the world in Choicheokjeon and Kimyoungchuljeon is originated from differences in this sense of place. Even though the foreign land is considered similar as an external place in both works, the foreign land of Choicheokjeon highlights the externality as a wanderer rather than the land of death for the life as a prisoner, and the foreign land of Kimyoungchuljeon shows not only the externality as a wanderer, but also the nature of ‘topophobia’ of Geonju. Also, in Choicheokjeon, the hometown hints the strong nature of topophilia, and in Kimyoungchuljeon, the hometown is the ‘land of suffering’ that cannot be left anymore as a ‘wanderer’. Through this distinctive sense of place, one is expressing the romantic and optimistic perception of the world while the other is effectively expressing the pessimistic perception of the world.