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Essays, Manifestos, Statements, Speeches, Maxims, Epistles, Diaristic Jottings, Narratives, Natural histories, Poems, Plays, Performances, Ramblings, Revelations, and all such ephemera as may appear necessary to bring society into a slight tremolo of confusion and fright at least.

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Ten Thousand Lives: Maninbo, Volumes 26-30

Ko Un

Translated from the Korean by Brother Anthony of Taizé and Lee Sang-Wha

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Ko Un
Ten Thousand Lives: Maninbo, Volumes 26-30
Series No.: 214
ISBN: 978-1933382425, Pages: 340
Korean Literature, Poetry

Buy the Ten Thousand Lives series (3 books)

SEE ALSO: Volumes 1–10, Volumes 21-25


Winner of the America Award for Literature

Born in 1933 in a small rural village in Korea’s North Cholla Province, Ko Un grew up in a Japanese-controlled land that was soon to experience the horrors of the Korean War. He became a Buddhist monk in 1952, and began writing in the late 1950s.

Ten Thousand Lives is his major, ongoing work, which began in prison with a determination to describe every person he had ever met or heard of. It tells the stories of many figures from Korean history, as well as children and poor people, who, without his poems, would have vanished into oblivion. Green Integer also published selections from Vols. 1–10 (2005) and from Vols. 21–25 (2021) of this magnum opus.

Maninbo, as it is known in Korea, represents one of the classics of 20th-century Korean Literature. It currently contains 4,001 poems in 30 volumes. Vols. 26–30, selected for translation here, feature poems dedicated to the victims of the 1980 Gwangju Democratic Uprising.

Brother Anthony of Taizé, born in Britain, has been living in Korea since 1980. He taught English Literature at Sogang University (Seoul) for many years. He is now an Emeritus Professor there, as well as a Chair-Professor at Dankook University. He has published some 60 volumes of English translations of Korean poetry and fiction.

Lee Sang-Wha is an Emeritus Professor at Chung-Ang University. She has published six translations into Korean of literary works, including two of works by Gary Snyder. She has collaborated with Brother Anthony on several volumes of translations of Ko Un.

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