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A Study on chinese writing novel <Byeolgye chaetam(別界採探)> published in Imperial CapitalNews(「皇城新聞」)

  • Korean Language & Literature
  • 2008, (65), pp.213-237
  • Publisher : Korean Language & Literature
  • Research Area : Humanities > Korean Language and Literature

조상우 1

1단국대

Accredited

ABSTRACT

The present paper examines a short story titled <Byeolgye chaetam(Exploring the Strange World, 別界採探)> focused on three aspects: the social backdrop of its creation, types of its characters and its significance in the history of Korean novels. First, the social backdrop of the story's creation is considered by examining the theaters at that time as well as articles about Yeonheungsa Theater(演興社) appearing in the Imperial Capital News(「皇城新聞」) and the Korean Daily News(「大韓每日申報」). Second, the story's character patterns are discussed focused on three protagonists--Yi Si-jong(李侍從), Major Bak(朴參領) and the mistress(別室). Finally, it's significance in the history of Korean novels is explored by comparing its characters with those appearing in both the previous and contemporary novels, in the process of which <Byeolgye chaetam> is evaluated to have been a story that attempted to disclose the evil influences of the new waves of thought and things from the perspective of Confucian scholars' ways of thinking. <Byeolgye chaetam> was so titled because the world described in the novel was largely different, in a quite negative way, from that of the contemporary people, especially Confucian scholars. In addition, it is possible to presume a connection between the male protagonist Yi Si-jong and the real-world Yi Jun-yong, the infamous pro-Japanese politician of the time. The author may have created this work as an indirect way to voice his negative opinion of the person when a direct criticism was not possible. The present study concludes that the author of <Byeolgye chaetam> wrote this work to show its reader, especially Confucian scholars, the evil influences of the new waves of thought and things that held sway over Korea during the period of Patriotic Enlightenment Movement. Another significance of this work is that the author attempted to create a new work of literature that reflected the social conditions of his time.

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