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A 'Trans-East Asian' Approach to Love Poetry by Modern Korean, Chinese, and Japanese Women Poets

  • The Journal of Study on Language and Culture of Korea and China
  • Abbr : JSLCKC
  • 2024, (71), pp.179-215
  • DOI : 10.16874/jslckc.2024..71.007
  • Publisher : Korean Society of Study on Chinese Languge and Culture
  • Research Area : Humanities > Chinese Language and Literature
  • Received : January 10, 2024
  • Accepted : February 20, 2024
  • Published : February 28, 2024

NA NURI 1 KIM Soomi 1 KIM JOONYOUN 1

1고려대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

In this paper we examined the love poems of female poets who were active in the three countries of Korea, China, and Japan during the same period, and analyzes the results from the perspective of “Trans East Asia.” In the modern era in East Asia, social discrimination against women in various aspects such as class and status was extremely severe. However, it is noteworthy that love poems by female poets have been transmitted in a context where literary production was almost monopolized by men. Heo Nansulhun's love poems, mainly expressed her longing for pure and beautiful love. She often imitated the poetry of Tang Dynasty poets. The love poems of Yi Maechang, another female poet of the Middle Joseon Dynasty, are characterized by their directness in expressing emotional states. She did not imitate Chinese poetry, but rather used common expressions. Liu Rushi's love poems often depicted the life of a traveling courtesan, trying to achieve love through an imaginary space. Another poet, Wang Wei, showed boldness in her love poems by directly expressing her love for men. Ema Saiko put a lot of her affection for Sanyo into love poems, and Sanyo coached Ema's poetry, confirming the love between them. Another female poet, Yanagawa Goran, wrote many love poems while traveling with her husband, expressing her feelings for him. This study comprehensively examined the love poetry of Korean, Chinese, and Japanese women poets from a trans-East Asian perspective. First, we show that despite the confinement of Confucianism, Korean, Chinese, and Japanese women poets achieved certain accomplishments in creating love poems. Next, they focused on the common literary genre of Classical Chinese poetry. While all of their love poems actively embraced the literary tradition of Classical Chinese poetry, but they also exhibited a variety of personalities due to differences in status and creative environment.

Citation status

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

This paper was written with support from the National Research Foundation of Korea.