Meeting with My Brother: A Novella

(Author) (Translator)
Product Details
Columbia University Press
Publish Date
5.5 X 0.8 X 8.6 inches | 0.6 pounds
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About the Author
Yi Mun-yol was born in 1948 and is one of the most prominent and socially significant literary figures of post-1980s Korea. He has written more than twenty novels, as well as six volumes of short fiction, and has won every major literary award in South Korea.

Heinz Insu Fenkl is a professor of English and Asian studies at SUNY, New Paltz. He is author of the novel Memories of My Ghost Brother (1996) and translator of Cho Oh-Hyun's For Nirvana: 108 Zen Sijo Poems (Columbia, 2016).
Yi Mun-yol is one of South Korea's most gifted writers, and this translation gives his simple style all of the elegant force it can bring to bear. This story of two brothers who find each other only after their defector father has died balances the weight of the country's history on their meeting as effortlessly as only a master could achieve. Compelling and essential reading.--Alexander Chee, author of the novels The Queen of the Night and Edinburgh
Meeting with My Brother is renowned writer Yi Mun-yol's fictional account of the different politics and desires coalescing along the Chinese side of the North Korean border, where people are both dreading and ardently wishing for national reunification between the two Koreas. The reunion of two brothers in Yi's story is deeply moving. Yi refuses to romanticize blood ties or to take recourse to melodrama. Instead, nuance and sensitivity color this story, which should be read by all those interested in a possible reunification.--Janet Poole, translator of Eastern Sentiments by T'aejun Yi
I've always wondered why more Korean literature in translation isn't available in the United States. Heinz Insu Fenkl's stylish translation of beloved Korean author Yi Mun-yol's complexly layered novella might change that. Meeting with My Brother trenchantly explores the ruptures of Korea's partition and hopes of reunification.--Marie Myung-Ok Lee, author of the novel Somebody's Daughter
A haunting, powerful story about a divided family and country by one of South Korea's most important writers.--Krys Lee, author of the novel How I Became a North Korean
Prefaced by an illuminating introduction by professor and translator Heinz Insu Fenkl in which he provides a literary and personal background to Korean author Yi Mun-Yol and Korean literature in general. . . . Meeting with My Brother, at just 90 taut pages, is well worth reading for its own sake.--Peter Gordon "Asian Review of Books "
Freshly presented to a new generation, Meeting with My Brother makes for required reading.--Lucy Scholes "Korean Literature Now "
A modest but quietly controversial look at two very different Koreas, questioning long-held orthodoxies.... Yi's novella complicates our understanding of relations between North and South.--Kirkus Reviews
Yi's exploration of identity, family, citizenship, and nationhood is urgently profound and deeply compelling.--Booklist (starred review)
Meeting with my Brother is a wonderful novella, somehow managing to summarise the issues behind the nation's division in less than a hundred pages. . . . Meeting with my Brother, quite apart from its political significance, is simply a beautiful, touching story, and it builds to the two brothers setting their differences aside to remember their father.--Tony's Reading List
First published in Korean in 1994, Meeting with My Brother is still as relevant in 2017. Importantly, this book gives you what headlines and political machismo can't - a sense of what's at stake for individuals, and why it all matters.--Words and Leaves
A seminal and timeless work. . . . What ultimately makes Meeting with My Brother so fascinating is Yi's subtle understanding of estrangement, abandonment, and the attendant feelings of suspicion that so often come up against the powerful call of blood and kinship. In Yi's fictional encounter, we feel the repressed grief of a nation torn in two, and the daily lives of those who must carry the legacy of such a divorce as they circle each other, wondering and yearning for a chance at intimacy.--Min Jin Lee "Times Literary Supplement "