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Danjong’s Story as a Cultural Memory

  • The Research of the Korean Classic
  • 2021, (55), pp.79-110
  • DOI : 10.20516/classic.2021.55.79
  • Publisher : The Research Of The Korean Classic
  • Research Area : Humanities > Korean Language and Literature > Korean Literature > Korean classic prose
  • Received : October 25, 2021
  • Accepted : November 9, 2021
  • Published : November 30, 2021

Sinjeong Kim 1

1호남대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

Danjong(1441-1457), the sixth king of the Joseon Dynasty, led a tragic life. His story was passed down orally as a legend that included both fact and fiction, and consisted of content that embodied the tragedy of his death and his after death. By forming and transmitting culturla memories of his death, the legend of Danjong became the catalys the subsequent worship of the god Danjong. In addition, storytellers display conflicting attitudes toward Heung-do Uhm, a person close to king Danjong. On the one hand, Heung-do Uhm, who risked death and buried Danjong’s corpse in the mountains, is remembered as a loyal subject, but on the other hand, he is also evaluated as a person who attempted to improve his status. The story can be defined as a cultural functional memory as per Aleida Assman’s memory theory. According to her, memory has a ‘technology’ for storage as well as a ‘vitality’ oriented toward reconstruction and change. Accordingly, this story appears to possess this ‘vitality’. As a cultural functional memory, this story continues to be connected with the present of the story-enjoying class, It can. thus, be said that it holds the possibility of change with them as the subject.

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