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A Comparative Study of the Joseon Women's Consciousness of reality between Gyubanggasa and Buyo

  • The Studies in Korean Poetry and Culture
  • Abbr : Korean Poetry and Culture
  • 2015, (36), pp.173-206
  • Publisher : The Society of Korean Poetry and Culture
  • Research Area : Humanities > Korean Language and Literature

SON SIEUN 1

1전북대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This story is aimed at revealing universal consciousness of Joseon era’s women and hierarchical distinctiveness by comparing the aspect of reality response that is expressed in Gyubanggasa and Buyo, or two main branches that represent woman literature. Gyubanggasa and Buyo show the similar recognition that women suppressed and isolated under patriarchal social system are literary form. But on one hand the class difference between nobleman and the common people was the social standard to decide the standard and quality of life because Joseon era regarded the order of social status as important. Woman's marriage is the starting point going into the new world. There are a few characteristics about the realistic condition and the aspect of response that Joseon era’ women confront through marriage. Woman's native home is the space that is difficult to go back again and object of longing and nostalgia. On the other hand, husband's home is the object of fear and anxiety as the space that they should live through. The position of woman's parents is replaced by husband's parents and siblings by husband's siblings. The relationship that woman makes with all husband's family members is derived from the spouse, husband through marriage. Therefore the husband is the precondition in understanding the woman's reality. In Gyubanggasa the individual and corresponding relationship with husband is not considered. The woman that is accustomed to family consciousness rarely deals with husband as a concrete motif excluding husband's family members. On the other hand, the husband in Buyo is the only support of woman. The woman commoner craves for husband's affection as the compensation of woman's married life. There is a difference in the way of representing the problems between wife and mistress in Gyubanggasa and Buyo. In the case of Gyubanggasa, the conflict between wife and mistress did not come to the surface because wife and mistress was distinguished strictly and formal wife's position is guaranteed by law. By comparison, the aspect of conflict between wife and mistress is exposed remarkably. The appearance of mistress to woman commoner is the husband's betrayal and the reason to make her lose the purpose and meaning of life ultimately. Also as noble-woman internalizes Confucius order, she deals with the mental shock more significantly coming from the fact that she can't do her duty-supporting family, performing ancestral ceremonies and visitors because of poverty. It's the mental pain coming from between prescriptive self and realistic self. Also the description about the process to overcome poverty by diligence and saving in Gyubanggasa is expressed more specifically. Buyo deals with the direct financial difficulty and poverty mainly. There are many works that reveal the hardship of physical labor. But they don't try to overcome poor situation and just accept poverty itself as fate. The various ways that Joseon era’ women recognize reality and live through are represented in Gyubanggasa and Buyo. Therefore Gyubanggasa and Buyo are the life literature that various reality of woman is expressed and experience literature to contain the experience of life that women live through.

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.