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Representation of chaebol in Korean mystery novels in the late 1970s and 1980s—focus on Jo Hae-il, The Country You Cannot Go and Park Bum-shin, The god of execution

  • Journal of Popular Narrative
  • 2022, 28(2), pp.297-328
  • DOI : 10.18856/jpn.2022.28.2.009
  • Publisher : The Association of Popular Narrative
  • Research Area : Interdisciplinary Studies > Interdisciplinary Research
  • Received : May 6, 2022
  • Accepted : June 17, 2022
  • Published : June 30, 2022

An Heayun 1

1성균관대학교 동아시아학과

Accredited

ABSTRACT

The purpose of this article is to analyze the representation of ‘chaebol (conglomerate)’ in Korean mystery novels in the late 1970s and 1980s, and to examine the public perception about chaebol. Jo Hae-il and Park Beom-shin's novels are texts that show public’s fantasies about ‘Justice’ to social problems not only just for 'Inheritance' of the patriarchal status in chaebol. The mystery novels of this period comprehensively describe social problems and changes in social structure, and can be said to show the theme of restoration of patriarchal ideology and succession of patriarchal status. In Jo Hae-il's novel “The Country You Cannot Go”, the male protagonist realizes justice through revenge for the immoral and debauched second generation of chaebol, but eventually becomes a criminal and reveals a social problem of distrust and dissatisfaction with state power. Park Beom-shin's novel “The god of execution” shows the anxious image of a male subject who is driven into infinite competition through an orphan trying to occupy the heir of a chaebol. On the other hand, in contrast to the male protagonists, female criminals in Korean mystery novels in the 1980s often complete perfect crimes. In particular, the female protagonist in Jo Hae-il's novel does not dwell on the moral cause or status that male protagonists are obsessed with, and is calculating and rational. The two male authors tried to accuse the women who committed crimes as sexually and morally depraved, but contrary to their intentions, the women show strong desire. I wanted to reveal what these women's desires meant.

Citation status

* References for papers published after 2022 are currently being built.