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The construction of the child in Korean children's magazines, 1908-1950 Zur, Dafna 2011

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THE CONSTRUCTION OF THE CHILD IN KOREAN CHILDREN’S MAGAZINES, 1908-1950 by Dafna Zur  B.A., The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 1997 M.A., The University of British Columbia, 2002  A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF  DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Asian Studies)  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA (Vancouver)  April 2011  © Dafna Zur, 2011   ii Abstract “The Construction of the Child in Korean Children’s Magazines, 1908-1950” examines the child as a site of ideological inscription through the texts and illustrations of children’s magazines from 1908-1950. The analysis, which spans Korea’s colonial and immediate post-liberation/pre-war period, opens with the publication of the first magazine for young readers in 1908, Sonyŏn (1908-1911), continues with an analysis of the colonial period magazines Ŏrini (1923-1934), Pyŏllara (1930-34), Sinsonyŏn (1929-34), and Sonyŏn (1937-40), and closes with the interruption of the publication of Ŏrininara (1949-50) and Sohaksaeng (1945-50) in 1950 upon the outbreak of the Korean War. This study focuses on magazines, and more specifically children’s magazines, because this medium was a major purveyor of Korea’s burgeoning consumer culture and well reflects the growth in literacy and the development of print and visual culture in modern Korea. Magazines also reflect colonial Korea’s changing engagement with social discourses such as Social Darwinism, colonialism, modernity and nationalism. The turn of the twentieth century brought with it an intense intellectual drive towards enlightenment in Korea, and the most significant target of enlightenment was the Korean child. It was the momentum toward reform and the gaze toward the future that brought the child so acutely to the forefront of social discourse and made the Korean child into a pliable image both textually and visually. By examining a representative range of magazines along the political spectrum, I demonstrate how the child—as a crucial site of ideological inscription—was constructed and manipulated in children’s magazines through negotiations with the discourses of colonial Korea. At the same time, I point to the existence of voices that wove a more complex tapestry and which, by problematizing the more prevalent constructions of the (enlightened/pure and  iii innocent/rebel, politically conscious/wild, natural) child, challenged the hegemonic discourses and provided their young readers with images that reflected, in part, the experience of being a young person during the tumultuous period of colonial and postcolonial Korea.  iv Table of Contents Abstract .......................................................................................................................... ii Table of Contents .......................................................................................................... iv List of Figures .............................................................................................................. vii Acknowledgements...................................................................................................... xii Dedication .................................................................................................................... xv 1 Introduction ............................................................................................................. 1  1.1 Why Magazines? ............................................................................................... 3  1.2 Why Children?................................................................................................... 6  1.3 Modernity and Children’s Magazines ............................................................. 17 2 Sonyŏn and the Modern Child ............................................................................... 21  2.1 Introduction: The Rise of Youth Culture......................................................... 21  2.2 The Enlightenment and the Rise of the Political Child ................................... 23  2.3 Terms in Circulation: Sonyŏn and Ch’ŏngnyŏn .............................................. 25  2.4 Sonyŏn and Nationalism .................................................................................. 32   2.4.1 Rejuvenation and Growth ................................................................... 34   2.4.2 Reform, Enlightenment, and Politicization......................................... 38  2.5 Sonyŏn and Social Darwinism......................................................................... 41  2.6 Sonyŏn and Modernity..................................................................................... 44   2.6.1 Visual Culture in Sonyŏn .................................................................... 45  2.7 Conclusion....................................................................................................... 56 3 Ŏrini and the Myth of Innocence .......................................................................... 63  3.1 Education and Colonial Policies...................................................................... 63   3.1.1 Censorship ......................................................................................... 68  v   3.1.2 Print Culture ........................................................................................ 69  3.2 Watershed (?)................................................................................................... 74  3.3 Youth Groups and Magazines ......................................................................... 77  3.4 Language and Narrative .................................................................................. 87  3.5 Folk Tales and National Identity ..................................................................... 92   3.5.1 Chōsen dōwashū,1924......................................................................... 95   3.5.2 Folk Tales and Nationalism ................................................................ 98  3.6 Ch’ǒndogyo and Pang Chǒnghwan ............................................................... 103  3.7 Tongsimjuŭi ................................................................................................... 106  3.8 Conclusion..................................................................................................... 114 4 Pyŏllara, Sinsonyŏn and the Rebel Child............................................................ 117    4.1 Introduction ............................................................................................... 117         4.2 Tongsim Under Attack ......................................................................... 120         4.3 Proletarian Magazines in Japan: Shōnen Senki ................................... 124         4.4 Proletarian Magazines in Korea: Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn................... 127         4.5 Sites of Conflict ................................................................................... 132             4.5.1 School........................................................................................ 133             4.5.2 Factory ...................................................................................... 135             4.5.3 Sea............................................................................................. 137          4.6 Knowledge for Empowerment ........................................................... 139             4.6.1 Class Consciousness ................................................................. 140             4.6.2 Solidarity and Revolution ......................................................... 142             4.6.3 Heroes and Antiheros................................................................ 143         4.7 Empowerment for Action..................................................................... 145  vi         4.8 Conclusion ........................................................................................... 151 5   Sonyŏn and the Natural Child .......................................................................... 152        5.1 Education, Publication and Censorship ................................................. 152        5.2 Sonyŏn .................................................................................................... 157        5.3 Wartime Rhetoric: Text and Visuals .................................................... 159              5.3.1 War is Child’s Play ................................................................. 166              5.3.2 Discipline through Hygiene, Health, Exercise and Frugality . 169              5.3.3 The Natural Child.................................................................... 172        5.4 Voices of Contention ............................................................................. 179        5.5 Conclusion ............................................................................................. 194 6  Ŏrininara, Sohaksaeng, and the Liberated Child ................................................ 196    6.1 Introduction.................................................................................................... 196    6.2 Publishing Trends in Liberated Korea ........................................................... 198    6.3 Children’s Magazines in Post-Liberation Korea............................................ 203    6.4 Language and Writing in Post-Liberation Children’s Magazines ................. 207        6.4.1 Recovering Han’gŭl: Language Purity and Morality ......................... 210    6.5 Recovering History: Yi Sunsin and the March First Movement ................... 217       6.5.1 Yi Sunsin and Notable Biographies ...................................................... 217       6.5.2 The March First Movement .................................................................. 222   6.6 Science and Technology .................................................................................. 226   6.7 Discipline, Nutrition, and Sports...................................................................... 229   6.8 Critical Voices.................................................................................................. 238   6.9 Division and the US: 1948-1950...................................................................... 242       6.9.1 The US in Post-Division Children’s literature...................................... 245  vii       6.9.2 Conclusion: The Liberated Child and the Rediscovery of Tongsim ..... 247 7    Conclusions...................................................................................................... 259 Bibliography............................................................................................................... 268 Appendices................................................................................................................. 282  Appendix A: Brave Boys of the Sea.................................................................... 282  Appendix B: A Shirt to Last Ten Thousand Years.............................................. 285  Appendix C: The Skies Look Clear, But............................................................. 294         viii List of Figures Figure 1 Ten Virtues .................................................................................................... 32 Figure 2 Emphatic Circles............................................................................................ 37 Figure 3 Boys at Sea .................................................................................................. 39 Figure 4 Large Fonts .................................................................................................. 46 Figure 5 Frilly Fonts .................................................................................................. 46 Figure 6 Mt T’aebaek................................................................................................... 47 Figure 7 Diagonal ....................................................................................................... 47 Figure 8 Boats ............................................................................................................ 48 Figure 9 Flying Machines ............................................................................................ 48 Figure 10 Nautical History........................................................................................... 49 Figure 11 Napoleon .................................................................................................... 49 Figure 12 Random ...................................................................................................... 49 Figure 13 Rabbit Korea .............................................................................................. 50 Figure 14 Tiger Korea ................................................................................................ 50 Figure 15 Japan Sea Bunny ........................................................................................ 50 Figure 16 Bear Province ............................................................................................ 50 Figure 17 England Map .............................................................................................. 51 Figure 18 World Map ................................................................................................. 51 Figure 19 Statue of Liberty ........................................................................................ 52 Figure 20 Napoleon Heads ......................................................................................... 53 Figure 21 Aborigines ................................................................................................. 54 Figure 22 Japanese Children ...................................................................................... 54 Figure 23 Crown Prince ............................................................................................. 55  ix Figure 24 Horse and Rider ......................................................................................... 61 Figure 25 Disrespectful Boy ...................................................................................... 82 Figure 26 Stern ........................................................................................................... 84 Figure 27 Cuckoo ....................................................................................................... 84 Figure 28 Frilly Detective .......................................................................................... 85 Figure 29 Baby and Pen ............................................................................................. 86 Figure 30 Fool ............................................................................................................ 86 Figure 31 Faces .......................................................................................................... 86 Figure 32 Proud Tiger ................................................................................................ 100 Figure 33 Boy with Dog ........................................................................................... 157 Figure 34 Salute ....................................................................................................... 160 Figure 35 Happy to see Planes ................................................................................. 161 Figure 36 Tense Soldiers .......................................................................................... 162 Figure 37 Bombs ...................................................................................................... 163 Figure 38 Planes ....................................................................................................... 163 Figure 39 Maraton .................................................................................................... 164 Figure 40 Fascists ..................................................................................................... 164 Figure 41 Ax ............................................................................................................ 165 Figure 42 Punch ....................................................................................................... 165 Figure 43 Child’s Play ............................................................................................. 168 Figure 44 Side by Side  ........................................................................................... 169 Figure 45 Proper Pose .............................................................................................. 171 Figure 46 Leaf Child ................................................................................................ 172 Figure 47 Fireflies .................................................................................................... 174  x Figure 48 Kwinama .................................................................................................. 176 Figure 49 Bicycle ..................................................................................................... 178 Figure 50 Soldier ...................................................................................................... 181 Figure 51 Mun’gi ..................................................................................................... 186 Figure 52 Squirt ....................................................................................................... 188 Figure 53 Shoes ........................................................................................................ 191 Figure 54 Mask ........................................................................................................ 192 Figure 55 Sohaksaeng .............................................................................................. 206 Figure 56 History ..................................................................................................... 218 Figure 57 Copper Seal .............................................................................................. 220 Figure 58 Boat History ............................................................................................. 220 Figure 59 Yu Kwansun 1 ........................................................................................... 224 Figure 60 Grandfather .............................................................................................. 224 Figure 61 Yu Kwansun 2 ........................................................................................... 225 Figure 62 Cute Baby ................................................................................................ 230 Figure 63 March In Place ......................................................................................... 230 Figure 64 Vitamins ................................................................................................... 232 Figure 65 Health Cycle ............................................................................................ 232 Figure 66 Nation Building Pill ................................................................................. 233 Figure 67 Olymics .................................................................................................... 237 Figure 68 Jump Rope ............................................................................................... 237 Figure 69 Guess the Bag .......................................................................................... 240 Figure 70 Chŏnghŭi ................................................................................................. 242 Figure 71 Indonesia .................................................................................................. 243  xi Figure 72 Electric Poles ........................................................................................... 243 Figure 73 Teacher Pak ............................................................................................. 246    xii Acknowledgements The epic journey that is a doctoral degree is crowned by a dissertation, but without the companionship and encouragement of faculty, friends, and family, not a single moment of this journey would be possible. I would first like to acknowledge the faculty members who guided me every step of the way: Above all, Professor Ross “Kyosunim” King, who accepted me into the MA program at UBC so many years ago. Ross King painstakingly taught me, through example, not only what it means to be a rigorous scholar but also what it means to cultivate and maintain integrity. I thank my role model, Professor Sharalyn Orbaugh, who has shown me the importance of combining academic inquiry with deep feeling and humanity; and Professor Theresa Rogers, who so eagerly stepped out of her comfort zone to provide me with the insights that made the project grow. Besides my devoted committee members, I would like to extend thanks to a few more people: to Jane Flick who taught my first class on children’s literature, and who continues to support me through her astonishing intelligence and boundless generosity; to my two university examiners, Professor Judith Saltman and Professor Hyung Gu Lynn, who challenged me to think about the rich potential still left in this dissertation; to my external examiner Professor Jin-kyung Lee for her thought-provoking comments; to Professor Bruce Fulton, under whom I started exploring the possibilities of close reading through translation; to Professor Kwŏn Yŏngmin, who listened patiently to the perpetual transmutations of the project, always offering words of encouragement and insight; to Professor Wŏn Chongch’an, who responded to my primary-source distress by sharing, immediately and with no qualms, his valuable materials with me; to Professor Ch’oe Chongsŏng, who provided me with invaluable last-minute guidance; and to Professor Vladimir Tikhonov, who looked over my magazines and helped me realize how fabulous my material was. I thank also my friend Dr. Adam Bohnet, who  xiii saw one of the earliest and messiest drafts of this dissertation and provided me with invaluable advice on how to improve it.  As my friend Elena Yugai noted in a particularly memorable toast, nothing is possible without our “support systems.” First, I would like to extend my deepest gratitude to the UBC childcare system in general, and the teachers of my young children in particular. Early childhood education is, in my mind, critical, invaluable, and infuriatingly underpaid and underappreciated, and it is the excellent and inspirational teachers of my young children that gave me the strength to continue my own work. I would also like to extend my deep thanks to the members of the Asian Studies department office: Mina, Shirley, Lonnie, Maija, Jasmina and Adam, who keep the office filled with chocolate, the pot full of coffee, and always have a smile and a word of encouragement. The friends that have seen me through my dissertation have kept me from losing my mind: My first friend in Vancouver Teresa Lee, Julie Grundvig, Ben Lu, Jieun Lee, Jeonghye Son, Jeehun Kim, Spencer Jentzsch, and Eunson Kim. A special thanks goes to my dear friend, Sinae Park; Sinae’s sharp wit and brilliant sense of humor, as well as her insatiable academic hunger and boundless curiosity and intelligence, has provided me with constant emotional and professional companionship; her presence pushed me to do better and strive for more, and I look forward with great anticipation to reading her wonderful work. I would also like to thank Dr. Kenneth Koo from the bottom of my heart. Over a decade ago, when I had to cover an undergraduate lecture, I had no way of knowing that the brilliant undergrad in that class was going to be my closest colleague and companion through the rigorous writing process. It is Kenneth’s encouragement and weekly, at times daily, phone calls and countless emails that carried me through the arduous writing process and made the dissertation better at every stage. I am excited to think about what other joint projects await us.  xiv  Now, my family. I thank my parents, Lila and Menachem Zur, who gave me the tools and the confidence to help me become who I am. My darling brother Yonah has been rooting for me forever, along with the rest of the Zur and Eberman clan. I wish to thank my beautiful trees, my boys Ilan and Oren, who remind me every day what is truly important and why we must never, ever stop striving to make it a better, safer world. They have kept me profoundly happy and I feel humbled and lucky to be in their presence, and I am grateful that they share with me their daily discoveries of the world’s wonders, and horrors. Finally, but most of all, I thank my husband, the father of my children and the love of my life, Eungsub Kim. He makes every thing possible.  xv Dedication      To Lila and Menachem Zur  1 1 Introduction This thesis examines the child as a site of ideological inscription through the texts and illustrations of children’s magazines from 1908-1950. My analysis—which spans Korea’s colonial and immediate post-liberation/pre-war period—opens with the publication of the first magazine for young readers in 1908, Sonyŏn [Young Child], and closes with the interruption of the publication of Sohaksaeng [Schoolchild] in 1950 upon the outbreak of the Korean War. I chose magazines as the focus of my study because this medium attests to modern Korea’s incipient consumer culture and reflects the growth in literacy and the development of print and visual culture during the period examined. Magazines also reflect colonial Korea’s shifting engagement with social discourses such as Social Darwinism, colonialism, socialism, modernity, and nationalism. More specifically, the turn of the century brought with it an intense intellectual drive toward enlightenment, and the most significant target of enlightenment, I argue, was Korean youth more generally, and the Korean child, in particular. It was the momentum toward reform and the gaze toward the future that brought the image of the child so acutely to the forefront of social discourse and made the Korean child into a pliable image both textually and visually. Early modern Korean children’s magazines, then, stood at the intersection of social discourses and children’s culture, and from that position they filtered, interpreted, and presented ideas to their young readers about colonial and national subjectivity. Three main research questions drive this study of Sonyŏn (Young Child, 1908-1911), Ŏrini [Small Child] (1923-1934), Pyŏllara [Star Land] (1930-34), Sinsonyŏn [New Child] (1929-34), Sonyŏn [Young Child] (1937-40), Chugan Sohaksaeng (Schoolchild Weekly  2 1945-50), and Ŏrininara (Child’s World 1949-50).1 First, what were the social, political and economic conditions that enabled, for the first time, the emergence of a print culture for children? Second, what were these magazines telling children to “be” and “do?” How did they construct their child readers? As a part of the second question, I ask more specifically how the different components of the magazines—prose, poetry, essays, advertisements, photographs, illustrations—showed or taught children how to perform their colonial subjectivity and/or national identity. These two questions led me to a larger, third one: What do the inscriptions of colonial subjectivity and/or national identity teach us about the role that the image of the child played during the colonial and immediate postcolonial period, and why is it important for us to understand this? These three questions provide the momentum for the following chapters of this dissertation. In order to achieve a fuller appreciation of the place of these magazines in the modern history of print culture of Korea,2 it is necessary first to explain the choice of the focus of this study. Simply asked: Why children? And why magazines? Recognizing that childhood is a modern construct (see discussion below), when did children begin to be “children” in Korea, and what was their perceived role in society? Once children had occupied a new space and their childhood became recognized and acknowledged, what did magazines in general, and individual writers and illustrators in particular, deem important to write for them? Did magazines respond to the prevalent discourses of their time—Social Darwinism, modernity, socialism, nationalism,  1 The dates included here do not necessarily correspond to the dates of publication, but rather to the volumes that I was able to obtain for this project. For the exact dates, please find reference to the magazines in each individual chapter. 2 Although I use the term Korea here, I will generally use the name “Chosŏn” (rather than the Japanese rendition, Chōsen, which was its more common name during the colonial period) to describe pre-division Korea, and will use the terms “North Korea” and “South Korea” after division in 1948.  3 colonialism—and if so, did they reproduce these discourses or subvert them? This dissertation, then, examines the ways in which children’s magazines constructed their imagined child readers and, by extension, explains why and how that these magazines contribute to our understanding of colonial and post-liberation Korea. 1.1 Why ‘Magazines’? Scholars have commented widely on the central significance of print culture in the twentieth century. In Imagined Communities, Benedict Anderson (1983) noted that nothing made the conceptualization of the nation or class solidarity more fruitful than print-capitalism.  The new technology of mass media made it possible for a growing number of people to conceptualize their identities and to imagine how they relate to other people, to whom they are connected via print media, in fundamentally new ways.3 Writing about Taishō era Japan, Nona Carter (2009) posits that the convergence of capitalist competition and print technology created the means for a new form of community, which paved the way for the modern nation and changed the means of both physical and intellectual communication. In Korea, too, the emergence of literary magazines was part of a developing print culture that included the production of “newspapers, journals and books… and after 1920 the print market expanded rapidly with the revival of daily magazines.”4 Ch’ŏn (2003), author of a pioneering study of reading practices in early modern Korea, points to the 1920s as the most significant decade in terms of literary production; it was between the years 1920 and 1930 that many of Korea’s ‘classics’—deemed canonical because, among other reasons, they have been  3 Anderson (2006) 36. 4 Robinson (2007) 89.  4 immortalized in Korean school textbooks—were published.5 Ch’ŏn considers the 1920s to be a significant departure from the past for several reasons: first, the expansion of education and gradual elimination of illiteracy; second, the development of a pastime (ch’wimi) culture that accompanied the rapid changes brought by industrial development; third, the emergence of an overwhelming interest in and consumption of new literature, newspapers and magazines. These are all optimistic statements—the numbers indicating literacy as published in the statistics of the Governor-General, for example, do not reflect levels that might point to general literacy and education, and one has to question if the livelihoods of Koreans in the 1920s allowed them to enjoy such ‘pastimes’ much at all. Still, the magazines that circulated since the 1920s marked a significant boom in production and consumption of print culture. Toward the end of the 1920s, Korean readers picked up their reading materials for more than one reason. While some read for pleasure, Ch’ŏn claims that many began to read as a part of their engagement with social discourses6, as literature came to be regarded as a critical tool through which to enlighten and educate the public. Reading materials included not only Korean materials but also print materials in Japanese, as more and more Korean became fluent and literate in kokugo, the “national language” of the colonial period.7 One of the significant novelties of the 1920s that Ch’ŏn discusses is the ‘new vogue’ of youth culture. This ‘new vogue’ followed on the heels of youth movements that were inspired by socialism, which enjoyed great popularity following the failure of the March First Uprising in 1919.8 But in fact, youth culture can be traced a decade earlier. The first magazine to herald this new trend was Sonyŏn (1908-1911), published (and also penned in great part) by Ch’oe  5 Kŭndae ŭi ch’aek ilkki 27. 6 Kŭndae ŭi ch’aek ilkki 32. 7 For a discussion on the official status of the national Korean script, see King (2007).  5 Namsŏn. Within a year of its publication, Sonyŏn appeared in print runs of over 2000 copies, and was even used as a textbook in elementary schools throughout the country.9  In the first volume of Sonyŏn, the editor Ch’oe Namsŏn proposes: Let us make our great Korea (taehan) into a nation of youth (sonyŏn); in order to realize this goal, let us educate and reform our youth so that they may bear that responsibility.10   For Ch’oe Namsŏn, “great Korea,” or taehan, symbolized a revival that was, by its very nature, youthful; his ultimate goal was to link youth with a new image of the nation. Sonyŏn may arguably not have been a ‘children’s magazine’ at all--the poetry and prose, some of which was very dense, was written in kukhanmun, or Sino-Korean mixed orthography: a mix of the vernacular Korean script and Chinese characters which would have been challenging, for example, for elementary school children to read. But its appearance marked a first in what was to become a permanent fixture of print culture in Chosŏn: a literary magazine aimed at a youthful audience. The children’s magazines that followed Sonyŏn were purchased, read, circulated, recited, taught, and censored. Not only did they contribute to Chosŏn’s blossoming print culture, they also collectively generated an image of the child, a construct of an imagined reader that was produced for popular consumption. And it is these children’s magazines that are the subject of the inquiry of this dissertation. Of course, it is important to recognize that it was not only the children’s magazines examined in this dissertation which contributed to the construction of the child in colonial and postliberation Korea. School textbooks, whether issued by the government or by missionaries,  8 Kŭndae ŭi ch’aek ilkki 205. 9 So Yŏnghyŏn 240. 10 우리大韓으로 하여곰 少年의 나라로 하라 그리하랴 하면 能히이 責任을 勘當하도록 그를 敎導하여라.  6 also produced their particular construction of the child, as did other print culture including Japanese magazines that were available in colonial Korea in addition to other Korean children’s magazines not included in this dissertation. School textbooks remain outside this particular study; while they add an admittedly important dimension to the construction of the child, they belong in the domain of the official voice of educational pedagogy. This dissertation attempts to examine those materials that fall under the voice of social pedagogy—materials that were not endorsed by an educational institution per se, but which nonetheless provided children with knowledge deemed important for their social, intellectual, and emotional development. Aside from textbooks, numerous Japanese magazines circulated in colonial Korea, and a study of them would greatly enrich future research on the development of print culture in this period. However, constraints of time and space preclude an examination of these in this dissertation. It should also be noted that there are yet other Korean children’s magazines that did not make it into this dissertation simply because they were unobtainable at the time of writing.11 It is my hope to be able to collect these rare materials, many of which can be found almost exclusively in the hands of private collectors, and at a later date refer to them so as to capture more precisely the picture of children’s print culture in colonial and postcolonial Korea.  1.2 Why ‘Children’? Children are as ancient as human history, yet the concept of childhood itself is a modern one. Philippe Ariès first called academic attention to the constructedness of childhood in his 1962 book published in French and translated into English as Centuries of Childhood, in which he  11 Some examples include Pulg’ŭn chyŏgori, Aidŭlboi, Saebyŏl, Kŭmsŏng, and Ahŭi saenghwal.  7 traced the social and material conditions that enabled the emergence of childhood.12  A second milestone study came in 1984 with Jacqueline Rose’s book, The Case of Peter Pan, or the Impossibility of Children’s Fiction. Rose argued that adults writing literature for children were more concerned with realizing their imagined ideal of the child than writing with ‘real children’ in mind: “children’s fiction”, she said, “emerges out of a conception of both the child and the world as knowable in a direct and unmediated way.”13 Ariès’ identification of childhood as a cultural construct has come to be viewed as common knowledge, and scholars of children’s literature in Asia—for example in Japan (Kawahara 1988) and China (Kinney 2004)—have supported this claim by exploring the social, and economic conditions that led to the emergence of childhood. Studies such as that by Clark and Higonnet14 show how children’s literature has often contributed to the creation of categories of age and gender that are necessary to preserve the social status quo. Some have responded to the implications of Rose’s ‘knowable child’ either by agreeing with her and by showing how “what might be taken for children’s culture has always been primarily a matter of culture produced for and urged upon children”15, or by disagreeing with her to the extent that “every literary act… contains [an] imbalance [of writer and imagined audience].”16 Rose’s supporters agree that children’s literature is particularly vulnerable to adult manipulation, while some of her critics, particularly the Canadian critic Perry Nodelman in an article with the clever title, “The Case of Children’s Fiction: Or, the Impossibility of Jacqueline Rose,” argues that writers and illustrators are far more self-aware of their own motivations, and far more sensitive in their responses to these motivations than Rose  12 Zelizer (1985) defines this emergence as part of a shift from seeing children as “objects of utility” to seeing them as “objects of sentiment.” 13 Rose 9. 14 Girls, Boys, Books, Toys: Gender in Children's Literature and Culture (1999). 15 Children’s Culture Reader 95.  8 indicates. Children’s literature today continues to be a site of heated debate, and the search for the real child goes on in contemporary literature and across cultures. Shavit’s (1986) argument—that the discovery of childhood must precede the birth of children’s culture and literature—may partly explain the seemingly late emergence of children’s culture in Korea, although more research on the history of childhood in Korea is necessary to support this argument. There are indications that the magazine Sonyŏn was created in order to grant young readers a new sense of identity rather than just respond to a youthful identity that already existed. In any case, the creation of print culture for children in Korea was, at least in part, predicated on the recognition that the reading/viewing child existed in the first place; materials were then created and made suitable in terms of content and language. Shavit’s work serves as a gateway to the theoretical positioning of the analysis of the texts in this dissertation, which follows a cultural studies approach to understanding Korean children’s magazines--an approach which, as Guerin notes, includes “fields [of theoretical inquiry] that concentrate on social and cultural forces that either create community or cause division and alienation.”17 The cultural studies approach was paved by foundational scholarship such as that of Gramsci, who argues that ideas must be understood within the political and economic structures that maintain them (the Gramscian concept of hegemony);18 and Althusser, whose concept of interpellation suggests that humans are subjected to the ideologies perpetuated by institutions that ‘interpellate  16 Rudd and Pavlik 223. 17 Guerin 276. Guerin defines the four shared goals of cultural studies as follows: Scrutinizing the cultural phenomenon of a text… and drawing conclusions about the changes in textual phenomena over time; Being politically engaged; Denying distinctions between high and low culture; and analyzing not only the cultural work but also the means of production (277-9). 18 See “State and Civil Society” by Antonio Gramsci.  9 individuals’ or determine the way they see themselves.19 Foucault’s explanation of the ways in which knowledge and power are constructed and perpetuated also contributes to a post-structuralist analysis of texts in general and the constructedness of children in particular.20 Post-structuralist approaches illuminate the content and language of children’s literature as careful choices based on a perception of what children need and want at a given time. Their ‘need’ often corresponds to hegemonic social and political discourses, supported by education and socializing functions in society. Their ‘want’ is identified as part of a larger and viable consumer market that needs to be enticed by entertainment. The response to what children need and want continues to change over time with developments in education, child psychology, and entertainment culture. However, as histories of childhood across the print cultures of Europe and Asia show, what children ‘need’ has typically taken precedence over what they ‘want.’ A survey of common Korean pre-colonial reading materials21 for children demonstrates that children in Chosŏn Korea – the educated sons of the yangban intellectuals, to be more precise – were trained and socialized with Confucian texts written for their edification, not for their pleasurable reading.22 The research of Sin Yangjae23 on the daily life of children  19 See Althusser’s famous essay “Ideology and Ideological State Apparatuses.” 20 See Foucault’s analysis in Discipline and Punish (1977), and for an application of Lacanian analysis in children’s literature, see Coats 2004. 21 These would include books such as the Thousand Character Classic (千字文; Ch’ǒnjamun), a primer with its origins in sixth-century China; The Precious Mirror for Illuminating the Mind (明心寶鑑; Myǒngsim Pogam), a fourteenth-century compilation of anecdotes illustrating proper behaviour; the fifteenth-century Samgang Haengsildo (三綱行 實圖), translated as the Illustrated Conduct of the Three Bonds; and the Tongmong sǒnsǔp ( 童蒙先習), Eradicating Youthful Ignorance and Kyŏngmong yogyŏl (擊蒙要訣) or the Secret to Expelling Ignorance, both from the sixteenth century. These were “so widely read that there would hardly have been a single literate person, even a beginning reader, who would not have been exposed to them” (Kim Hyang’ŭn 410). 22 See Ch’oe Kisuk (2006b). 23 Sin Yangjae (2005a) 1-18.  10 in the late Koryǒ period (918-1392) points to the fact that children participated in family life and helped out with chores: girls with needlework, boys with livestock. These activities prepared them for the economic roles they were to play in society. Children also participated in important ceremonies and social and communal obligations. In this sense, Sin claims there was no great divide between child and adult activities, which made for a smooth transition into adulthood and was advantageous for social and cultural continuity. Paek Hyeri	 (2004) provides a more detailed sketch of age-based categories, and outlines what children’s responsibilities would have been at each stage. Writing about the Chosŏn period (1392-1910), Kim and Paek (2000) note that the age of seven was a watershed because until this age, children were given few boundaries. After age seven, boys and girls were no longer allowed to be in each other’s company, and at ten boys were treated as adults, participating in mourning rituals and beginning their apprenticeship in a profession.24 Chŏng and Paek (2001), in their examination of late Chosŏn paintings, note that children were seen as an important part of society and family, and were identified in paintings distinctly according to their gender. Boys were often included in paintings of the marketplace and other scenes from public life, showing that even at a young age they were visible participants in society.25 While no precise date can be stamped on the hypothetical ‘birth certificate’26 of the ‘modern’ Korean child, Shavit’s (1986) methodology demands that we assume that the appearance of print culture for the young reader—Ch’oe Namsŏn’s magazine Sonyŏn—signals that this idea of a young reader had emerged. However, as chapter two shows, it is unclear who the child actually was, since the skills demanded for the reading of texts often densely populated  24 Kim and Paek (2000) 14-15. 25 Chŏng and Paek (2001) 14. 26 The common words Korean scholars use in the context of the “discovery of the child” are  11 with Chinese characters and Sino-Korean holophrases were probably too sophisticated for most young Korean readers of 1910 to handle. Regardless, Ch’oe’s passion for and commitment to his young readers is not in question; nor is the undubitable influence that Japanese youth print culture exerted on him. Korean intellectuals such as Yi Kwangsu (1892-1950), Ch’oe Namsŏn (1890-1957), and Pang Chŏnghwan (1899-1931) travelled to Japan, and met with leading Japanese children’s scholars and folklorists. Deeply inspired, they returned to Korea to start their own publishing houses and position Korean youth (ch’ŏngnyŏn 靑年) as the centerpieces of the discourse of renewal and modernization of the Korean nation. The ch’ŏngnyŏn of Chosŏn were urged to seek a break with the past and to devote themselves to the future.27 According to modernist logic, which perceived progress along lines of European enlightenment, the success of youth—and by extension, Chosŏn in general—would depend upon the degree of their personal effort. The ch’ŏngnyŏn were the nation, and the nation belonged to the young and to those who could drag the decrepit dynasty out of its dark ages. Chapter Two begins the inquiry into the rise of print culture for young readers in the kaehwagi, or period of enlightenment (roughly, 1890-1910). In this period, Social Darwinism captured the imagination of most of Korea’s prominent writers. In Social Darwinism and Nationalism in Korea (2010), Vladimir Tikhonov points to what he calls the “enthusiastic reception” of Social Darwinism by the most prominent thinkers and writers in colonial Korea.28 Generally speaking, Social Darwinism identified “industrial capitalism with progress,” and the groups that used its logic maintained their “staunch belief in the impracticability of egalitarian  either t’ansaeng (birth) or palgyŏn (discovery). 27 Hwang Chongyŏn (2005) points out that the “ch’ŏngnyŏn of Korea” referred mainly to Korea’s young men. 28 Tikhonov (2010) 3. According to Tikhonov, Social Darwinism played a much larger role in Korea than it did in either Japan or in China.  12 solutions.”29 Tikhonov points out that in Korea, “for many young intellectuals aspiring to understand the basic principles of the new, ‘enlightened’ world, Social Darwinism was synonymous with the discourse of modernity.”30 Social Darwinism helped modernizers justify their efforts in a broad context and in a “‘scientific’ trajectory of world history.”31 Tikhonov explains that the subscription of the Korean elite to Social Darwinism is what supplied them some degree of justification on the eve of annexation and in face of Japan’s imperial aggression; for them colonialism, in its stated mission of bringing progress to backward nations, was, in some sense, inevitable. What Chapter Two seeks to do, then, is to consider the subscription to Social Darwinism among Korea’s leading thinkers and writers and to explore the implications of this social discourse for children’s magazines. Many of the writers who subscribed to Social Darwinism, including Yi Kwangsu and Ch’oe Namsŏn, published essays in Sonyŏn; and in these essays, the influence of Social Darwinism is readily apparent.  It can be traced both in text and illustrations; in the celebration and admiration of the great military achievements of Napoleon and Peter the Great; in the flaunting of grandiose monuments erected in commemoration of victorious battles (the descriptions of which are enhanced with photographs); in the call to Chosŏn’s children to “conquer the world” (enhanced by detailed maps of the world that emphasize, for example, the extent of Britain’s colonial conquests); and in a general lack of condemnation of the Japanese colonial project, which was already underway in all but name. It appears that the official system of censorship did not begin until 1910,32 so that, theoretically at least, Ch’oe could have expressed himself relatively freely in this period. His focus in Sonyŏn  29 Tikhonov (2010) 6. 30 Tikhonov (2010) 11. 31 Tikhonov (2010) 16.  13 remains unwaveringly on the current project at hand: saving Korea from the darkness of regression through modern knowledge and (industrial capitalist) progress. What was overlooked completely in this very first period of writing for a child audience was any sense of the child himself.33 The magazine reviewed in chapter two reflects nothing of the lived experiences of Korean youth, and there is a complete absence of any literary expression that might address concerns that lie outside their political or social edification. As Chapter Three shows, the vociferous enthusiasm for the central role that the next generation needed to play was accompanied by a growing concern with children’s welfare and rights in general. Organizations such as the YMCA arrived in Korea in the early twentieth century; and thanks to expanding social activism in the 1920s, more and more attention was turned to youth organizations, particularly in light of the harsh colonial cultural policies following annexation in 1910 and as a reaction to widespread illiteracy. This concern was inspired also by the indigenous religion of Ch’ŏndogyo [The Heavenly Way], itself rooted in the philosophies of Eastern Learning or Tonghak philosophies which went back to the late Chosŏn dynasty. The concern with children’s affairs was also inspired through the exposure to the pedagogical philosophies of Rousseau through Japanese language translations. Pang Chŏnghwan, who was the son-in-law of the religious leader of Ch’ŏndogyo, was deeply committed to the religion’s doctrines—chief among them being innaech’ŏn (人乃天), which implied that heaven (the sacred, God, the spirit) is innate and internal, not external. Building on this doctrine, Pang argued that children harbored heaven inside them, were the embodiment of  32 See Chŏng Kŭnsik 2005. 33 I write ‘himself’ deliberately, as there is almost a complete absence of any acknowledgement of the female gender throughout this period. The Korean language is not gendered to begin with, but the general sense is that the content is geared to young men who were more likely to have received the education necessary for reading in the first place.  14 purity and innocence, and therefore needed adult protection. Pang took the pen name Sop’a (小 波), not accidentally using the same characters as the name of one of the founders of Japanese children’s literature, Iwaya Sazanami (巖谷小波), and established the magazine Ŏrini in 1923. But above all, Pang’s work was driven by his belief that at the core of each child was a tongsim (童心), or child-mind. The child-mind required socialization (in the form of national identity, to the degree allowed by censorship), which was to be shaped by the recovery of Chosŏn’s folktales; and also entertaining distraction. But above all, the child-mind demanded respect and protection, and Pang’s magazine in general, and short stories and articles, in particular, demonstrate both his belief in the collective social responsibility to protect the child-mind and his commitment to that cause. Pang’s departure from the modernity discourse is reflected also in the illustrations of the magazine Ŏrini which, although not the central focus of the magazine, indicate an awareness and sensitivity to a younger audience. The construction of the notion of a child-mind, or tongsim (童心), can also be traced in China and Japan, and has social implications similar to those of the myth of childhood innocence in European culture. Ariès notes in his observations of European culture in the 1950s that “the idea of childish innocence resulted in two kinds of attitude and behavior towards childhood: firstly, safeguarding it against pollution by life… and secondly, strengthening it by developing character and reason.”34 James Kincaid, who writes about child innocence and its dire consequences (for example, the sexual abuse of children), notes that “the myth of childhood innocence… ‘empties’ the child of its own political agency, so that it may more perfectly fulfill the symbolic demands we make upon it.”35 Childhood innocence, as Kincaid argues, is not a  34 The Children’s Culture Reader 56. 35 The Children’s Culture Reader 1.  15 timeless condition but a cultural myth that must be “inculcated and enforced” upon children.36 In Korea, the myth of innocence that was promoted in the work of Pang Chŏnghwan was driven by an unquestioning belief in the innocence and purity of the child and in the very urgent need for its nationalization and socialization. The implications and consequences of the construction of childhood innocence will be the focus of Chapter Three. Chapter Four examines the development of another discourse that grew in popularity starting in the early 1920s. This discourse was critical of the way in which the child had been constructed by both Sonyŏn—the child as the sole hope for the future and for whom the only path toward progress was the negation of the past and quick adoption of modern knowledge—and by Ŏrini—the child as the essence of purity, innocence, and goodness, and a helpless victim of oppressive adults (colonial and otherwise). This discourse was socialism. Starting in 1923, youth groups with leftist leanings began to promote their vision of the child: not as a disenfranchised, exploited victim but as a child who, armed with correct (as opposed to false) class consciousness, was now sufficiently angry to revolt and act upon his or her anger. Writers such as Pak Seyŏng, Im Hwa, Song Yŏng, and Yi Kiyŏng—all writers who played significant roles in the establishment of class-conscious literature in the 1920s and 30s—contributed to the proletarian children’s magazines Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn. They manipulated the concept of tongsim and remodeled it into an active, self-aware, and empowered essence ready to be educated in the workings of politics and society and ready to take action. The late colonial period magazine Sonyŏn is the subject of Chapter Five. Japan’s increasing militarization and the second Sino-Japanese War (1937-45) reverberated in the  36 The Children’s Culture Reader 2.  16 Japanese colonies in the form of an intensification of assimilation policies.37 The children’s magazine Sonyŏn reflects this intensification through the aestheticization of war, an emphasis on self-restraint, hygiene and discipline, and the construction of the child as ‘natural’, all of which are reflected in text and illustrations alike. Like Pang’s tongsim, which also promoted an image of the child as artless and natural, the ‘natural’ child of the late colonial period served the purpose of shaping the Korean child’s colonial subjectivity because it meant that the child was perfectly situated to be reformed and molded. But there was something more to this imaging of the natural child. Writing about nature in a later period in Japan, Julia Thomas (2001) examines the changing perceptions of nature within political modernity. She notes that Japan’s foremost political scientist, Maruyama Masao (1914-96), perceived nature as “anti-modern, deadeningly traditional, and opposed to liberty.” According to Maruyama and other modern leftist and liberal theorists in Japan, “true modernity was premised on the rejection of nature.”38 Janet Poole39 touches upon the trope of local color (hyangt’osaek)40 in one context of literary modernity when she alludes to the way in which images of the countryside and rural women and children—“exoticised rurality”—were aestheticized in order “to stabilize the representation of Korea as a part or a region of the greater imperial realm.” I argue that the images of the ‘natural’ child perhaps also unwittingly promoted the construction of an anti-modern child that bolstered colonial discourses. At the same time, a consideration of late colonial repression and militarization renders the achievement of a few Korean writers and poets from this period all the more remarkable. In particular, the prose of Hyŏn Tŏk stands out as a unique voice that spoke out in the late colonial  37 See Leo Ching (2001) and Louise Young (1998). 38 Julia Thomas (2001) 20. 39 “Late Colonial Modernism and the Desire for Renewal.”  17 years of militarization and gave expression to the complex constructions of Korean children from this period with a sincerity and eloquence that has few equals in children or adult literature. Chapter Six tells the story of post-liberation children’s magazines, and is guided by the question of whether national liberation brought any shifts or changes to the hegemonic discourses. When liberation finally came in 1945, the burst of excitement and hope for the future, the longing to recover the repressed past, and the bitter resentment toward the Japanese colonizers is palpable on every page of the children’s magazines published soon after liberation. With a certain degree of censorship lifted, at least until 1948, writers and illustrators were free to compose their vision of the child in liberated Korea. From an analysis of the magazines, however, it is clear that even as nationalism rose to the surface, certain discourses remained the same. While vilification of Japan was all the rage, and the need to purify the Korean language of foreign vestiges of Japanese and Chinese was a primary concern, nutrition, physical discipline and sports became even more popular. The prevalence of articles on these topics and illustrations of muscular men/orderly schoolchildren recalls Todd Henry’s article “Sanitizing Empire” (2005) and his discussion of control over the colonial Korean population through discourses of health and hygiene. Division in 1948 and the establishment of the National Security Law that same year in the Republic of Korea paved the way for the hegemonic anti-Communist discourse that hardened in South Korea after the Korean War and colored the production of children’s literature and criticism there for decades to follow. 1.3 Modernity and Children’s Magazines Any examination of print culture in Korea from the period of enlightenment (approx.  40 See Pak Kyeri (1996).  18 1890-1910) through Korea’s colonial experience (1910-1945) cannot but confront the questions of its negotiations with modernity. As misleading and essentializing as they are, the terms “pre-modern” and “modern” are still used today to point to a watershed in Korean literature, a “before” and “after” that are supposed to signify concrete shifts and transformations in both content and language. Barlow (1997) reminds us that modernity can no longer be regarded “as a thing in itself, for that sleight of hand obliterates the context of political economy.”41 The term colonial modernity is useful, Barlow explains, because, Colonial modernity can also suggest that historical context is not a matter of positively defined, elemental, or discrete units—nation states, stages of development, or civilizations, for instance—but rather a complex field of relationships or threads of material that connect multiply in space-time and can be surveyed from specific sites.42  Barlow indicates that the ‘slipperiness’ of historical context must be considered through new terminology that might create the possibility of greater clarity through a consideration of historical complexity. In the Korean context, too, the term ‘modernity’ (kŭndae) has been replaced by the more nuanced term ‘colonial modernity’. This term indicates that Korea’s experience of modernity was very much defined, shaped, and mediated by its colonial experience. An exploration of different modes of modernity can still contribute to a useful examination of colonial Korea’s negotiation with this powerful discourse in the early twentieth century. Janet Poole explains43 that modernity in its Euro-American model indicates a linear progression that is part of a grander narrative in the global process of modernization. Poole calls attention to three definitions of modernity which might capture the non-Euro-American  41 Formations of Colonial Modernity in East Asia 1. 42 Formations of Colonial Modernity in East Asia 6.  19 experience, such as that of Korea, in a more accurate way: one, a time-space compression, in which new media technologies revolutionize the transmission of information and effectively ‘compress’ past and present, and urban and rural (David Harvey); two, modernity as a eulogy for ancient times and pre-capitalist economic life (Peter Osborne); and three, modernity as brought about by conditions that include emergent technologies, still-powerful remnants of an aristocratic culture to be prolonged or negated, and an imagined proximity of social revolution (Perry Anderson). Evidence of all three of these definitions can be found throughout the children’s magazines of colonial Korea. Harvey’s “time-space compression” is apparent in photographs of the Roman Coliseum and Niagara Falls, advertisements for unfamiliar chocolate and caramels, and published letters from around the globe, all of which transported the geographically and temporally remote ‘out there’ to the immediate ‘here and now’ and effectively compressed city and country, home and away. As for Osborne’s “eulogy of the past,” children’s magazines are invariably—although perhaps to different extents depending on the magazine and decade—concerned with the urgent business of either refuting or recovering the past. What this indicates is not necessarily a conscious effort to come to a complex understanding of the past, although I do not mean to dismiss the intentions of these efforts which must have been wholehearted and sincere. But in effect the refuting/recovering of the past often resulted in a construction of the past, present and future that was more indicative of the need to affirm hegemonic discourses than of anything else. As for Perry Anderson’s definition of modernity, colonial period children’s magazines exhibit all three conditions: emergent technologies in the form of print culture, as well as film and other leisure activities; still powerful remnants of aristocratic culture to be prolonged or negated in the form of a vehement  43 “Late Colonial Modernism and the Desire for Renewal.”  20 anti-yangban discourse; and an imagined proximity of social revolution—which was the explicit mission statement laid out for the children of Chosŏn. To these, however, I would add a fourth conception of modernity offered by Julia Thomas, who explains that, [m]odernity is not an achieved state but a historical experience. Instead of defining modernity along the lines of the teleological narrative… as the system of political and social institutions and modes of production that have mastered nature, modernity may be defined as a particular historical experience with several possible outcomes spanning the political spectrum from left to right. What unites these different forms of modernity around the globe is the shared experience of the dissolution of the old “cosmopolis,” the fundamental relationship between nature and society, followed by its conscious reconstruction in a different pattern.44  The Korean child at the turn of the twentieth century was constructed as—if nothing else—the embodiment of the dissolution of the old ‘cosmopolis.’ Chapters two through six will detail how adult writers—speaking, in some cases, in voices that were recognized to be the authoritative voices of their age—saw children (and children’s magazines) as ideal sites from which to meditate, pontificate, and lecture about the reconstruction of social and economic foundations. The content of children’s magazines was meant to be at times empowering of children, at times distracting and entertaining; at times, it was also unintentionally demeaning. Taken as a whole, the children’s magazines examined in the following chapters contribute to our general understanding of Korea’s complex negotiations with the rapidly changing reality of the early twentieth century—on behalf of its children.  44 Julia Thomas, Reconfiguring Modernity: Concepts of Nature in Japanese Political Ideology 26-7.  21 2  Sonyŏn and the Modern Child 2.1 Introduction: The Rise of Youth Culture The child and the notion of childhood are integral to the modern nation-state. The child in the modern nation-state has played a central role in spurring the development of educational and welfare institutions. And, as Sharon Stephens notes, “the creation of a modern state and national culture is integrally related to the creation of new sorts of gendered and age-graded subjects and spaces and the establishment of institutions variously engaged in spreading these constructions throughout society.”45 These constructions also demarcate the line between normative and deviant, ideal and delinquent. The power of childhood is so great that, as Daniel Thomas Cook explains, “children are born not into a ‘society’ per se but into a childhood…childhood thus precedes and frames any specific child, socially and temporally speaking.”46 These configurations, as pointed out by Cook, do much to predetermine the way that children will understand themselves and become self aware of their gender, for example, and of their specific place in the world. At the same time, constructions of youth, child and childhood are culturally and historically specific. Zelizer (1985), for example, examines the rise of childhood in the United States in a socio-economic context, and asks why the sentimental value of children’s lives increased exactly at the moment when their contributions to the household disappeared; and Katharyn Libal comments on the rise of the discourse of the ‘robust child’ as an index of Turkey’s progress and (Western) civilization.47  While a study of the specific domestic developments that have shaped the emergence of child and childhood are critical, no less  45 Children and the Politics of Culture 15. 46 Symbolic Childhood 2.  22 important is the consideration of the extent to which the ideas of youth, child and childhood were circulated and exported through, for example, projects of colonialization and globalization. The emergence of childhood is not the primary subject of this study; nevertheless it is important to discuss it briefly here because without it print culture for children would never have reason to appear. Childhood may have emerged differently in various geographical locations and socio-political contexts, but literature for children, says Zohar Shavit, “passes through the same stages of development…the same cultural factors and institutions are involved in [its] creation.” She adds: It was always ideology, linked with a strong educational doctrine, which formed the basis of official children’s literature. The tenet that children needed books in the course of their education constituted the emergence of a new function in the literary system, that is to say, the emergence of a specific system of books designated for children only.48  In Korea, too, the rise of print culture for youth and children also occurred only after certain stages of development had taken place, specifically following educational and social reform. But that was not all; more critical was the timing of the rise of children’s print culture in Korea, because it coincided precisely with Korea’s loss of sovereignty, as it became a protectorate in 1905 was officially colonized by Japan in 1910. The convergence of the doctrines of educational and social reform and the looming colonial experience combined to create Korea’s first youth magazines. Korean youth were singled out for their immense potential. They occupied a perceived liminal space that was untainted by the past and capable of creating a bright future. Although it was not until the 1920s that children were recognized as a separate category that had specific  47 Symbolic Childhood 110.  23 textual and linguistic needs, the first decade of the 1900s was marked by a growing market of print culture that responded to the demands of developing printing technology and evolving educational institutions that began to produce young, literate subjects. 2.2 The Enlightenment and the Rise of the Political Child The year 1895 marked Korea’s official independence from the influence of Qing China, and is known today as the beginning of the kaehwagi or period of enlightenment. Lasting until 1910, this period has been characterized by “intellectual experimentation and adaptation, as the leading intellectuals attempted to reconcile the new ideas and models originating from the West, as well as from contemporary Japan and China, with the very powerful equivalents from the Korean-Confucian tradition.”49 Andre Schmid notes that “the fifteen years between 1895 and 1910 were variously described as a time of change, an era of reform, a period of transition, and, most of all, a time of crisis.”50 At the center of debate was the nature of the Korean kukka or nation, and knowledge about the nation was re-produced to suit the repositioning of Korea in the changing world order. Defining the nation and Koreanness was a necessary step toward the evolution of civilization, as Schmid explains: “the nation and civilization were seen as intertwined, inseparable parts of the same reform enterprise, in which the seemingly benign nature of civilized knowledge was to assist in preserving the nation.”51 But the targets of this reformulation of the nation were not only the nation or ‘Koreanness’ (Schmid describes its components as including the national soul (kukhon) and national essence (kuksu)); beyond that was also the construction of the subject of the nation: the citizen, or kungmin. With the declaration of Korea as a Japanese protectorate in 1905 and then full-fledged annexation in  48 Aspects and Issues in the History of Children's Literature, 28. 49 Hwang, Kyung Moon (2000) 1. 50 Schmid (2002) 7.  24 1910, one group in particular began receiving full attention: the future kungmin of Korea, its children. It is no coincidence, then, that writers, educators, publishers, and other producers of cultural materials in the period of enlightenment in Korea took an intense interest in children. Scholars such as Sŏ Tongsu (2008) and Paek Haeri (2004) note the interest taken in children at this point of heated debate over the future of the Korean state and over the education and reform of its citizens, and document the public concern about education and child-rearing. Korean youth were identified as the future of the Korean nation and had to be transformed into national citizens (kungmin); scholars of early childhood education and historical studies of school textbooks emphasize the extent to which education became the focal point, first of nationalists and then, with formal annexation, almost exclusively of the colonial government (Cho Yŏnsu et al 2003; Yi Pyŏngdam 2006).  It has also been pointed out (Cho Ŭnsuk 2002; 2009) that the growing interest in children’s welfare and issues surrounding children’s rights and education were eclipsed in this period by more abstract questions of loyalty to the nation and children’s ability to carry Korea forward. Most important, however, was the view that the older generations were tainted with primeval customs and old modes of knowledge.  The new generation, by contrast, was a clean slate, untainted and fresh, and full of unrealized potential and possibilities. At the same time, however, being young, or more specifically, being a child, also implied being unripe or green, not-fully-formed, and in dire need of edification and protection. Printed forms of cultural production—magazines, books, and school  51 Schmid (2002) 9.  25 textbooks—were to help produce and disseminate new forms of knowledge that were to create the new national citizen.52 2.3 Terms in circulation: Sonyŏn and Ch’ŏngnyŏn One of the indications of the rise in importance of the child in the enlightenment period is the circulation of signifiers and the shifting of their signified categories. The terms in circulation that signified young people—sonyŏn, ch’ŏngnyŏn, ŏrini, and adong—were not new; some of them, such as sonyŏn, for example, boast of a long history. Still, these terms acquired new meanings: by the first decade of the twentieth century, sonyŏn and ch’ŏngnyŏn became the subjects not only of two innovative magazines but also of Korea’s new youth.  The terms used to signify young people at the turn of the century, sonyŏn, ch’ŏngnyŏn, ŏrini, and adong, were neither new or original. Cho Ŭnsuk (2009) claims that the Sino-Korean word sonyŏn [Ch. 少年, young in years] goes back to the Silla dynasty (57 BC-935 AD), where it referred to an early period in one’s life;53 the term ch’ŏngnyŏn [Ch. 靑年, youthful, ‘unripe’ and green] dates back to the 17th century; the vernacular Korean word ŏrini [youth, from the verb ŏrida, to be young] which is wrongfully believed to have been invented in the 1920s, made several appearances in 17th and 18th century texts (but subsequently gained prominence after the 1920s); and the term adong (Ch. 兒童, child] too, was a term that existed already from the Chosŏn dynasty (1392-1910).  What is unique about their appearance in the twentieth century was their lack of stability and their interchangeability. These terms were, after all, constructions that did not pinpoint particular markers in a child’s life from a scientific or a developmental  52 Sŏ Tongsu (2008), 246-7.  26 psychology perspective.54  The terms stabilized in the 1920s and will be discussed further throughout this chapter; the important point to emphasize here is the very fact that these terms gained currency, and that they were circulated, scrutinized and debated. They illustrate the prominent place that youth and children came to hold at the turn of the century.  The terms ch’ŏngnyŏn and sonyŏn—terms that signified the subjects of enlightenment charged with building the modern nation and objects in dire need of education and reform—began to circulate thanks in great part to two factors: the YMCA, which was known in Korean as the Kidokkyo ch’ŏngnyŏnhoe (the “Young” was translated into Korean as ch’ŏngnyŏn), and also to Ch’oe Namsŏn’s publications, particularly his magazine Sonyŏn. Yun Yŏngsil (2008) argues that ch’ŏngnyŏn was the first of these terms to gain currency, first in 1896 and then after 1905 when it appeared in the magazine T’aegŭk hakpo, a magazine published by Koreans studying in Japan. In T’aegŭk hakpo, the ch’ŏngnyŏn—as symbols of physical prowess and vibrant youthfulness—were expected to overcome the inefficacies of the elderly (noin), the frail, the women and the young children of Korea in order to build a new civilization and modern culture. Cho Ŭnsuk (2009) attributes the appearance of the ch’ŏngnyŏn—the twenty-something group—to the social visibility of an increasing number of Korean students receiving high school education both at home and in Japan.55   As for the term sonyŏn, Yun Yŏngsil (2008) traces its contemporary origins to Liang Qichao’s “Ode To Young China” (Ch. 少年中國說) which appeared in 190056, echoing Li Zhi’s “Ode to the Child-like  53 In its Chinese origin, shaonian or 少年, was a gender neutral term and simply meant ‘young in years’. 54 Cho Ŭnsuk (2009) 39-54. 55 Cho Ŭnsuk (2009) 62. 56 Tikhonov (2010) 88.  27 Mind” (tongxin shuo, 童心说) of the 16th century.57  In “Ode To Young China,” Liang turns the tradition of respecting elders on its head by associating old age with decrepitude and conservatism and youth with hope and progression; he points out that “true nation-states had but recently emerged” and traced out the trajectory of Chinese history to emphasize that earlier stages had been slow pre-developmental stages but that now China was on the verge of youth.58  When one of late Chosŏn’s most prolific writers, Ch’oe Namsŏn (1890-1957), published his first magazine for a non-adult audience, it was not the term ch’ŏngnyŏn that he opted for. Ch’oe studied in Japan between October 1904 and January 1905, and then again between April 1906 to June 1908. His second visit was particularly significant, since it was then that his exposure to publishing technologies and magazine circulation (including children’s magazines) inspired his decision to pioneer the same technologies in Chosŏn. It is also on his second study trip to Japan that Ch’oe Namsŏn developed his ideas about the role of youth as saviours of the Korean nation in the above-mentioned magazine T’aegŭk hakpo.59 Upon Ch’oe’s return to Korea in 1908, it was not the group of young people determined by the term ch’ŏngnyŏn that Ch’oe singled out as leaders of Korea in the new world order. He chose another term, sonyŏn, which he used as the title of the magazine that he published between 1908-1911, when Ch’oe himself was only eighteen years old.  As Yun Yŏngsil explains, Ch’oe’s choice of the word sonyŏn is meaningful, considering that ch’ŏngnyŏn was the more loaded term that had come to signify Korean youth that could realize their subjectivity; the much younger sonyŏn were  57 Liang Qichao (1873-1929) was an immensely influential Chinese reformer and Social Darwinist. On his influence in Korea, see Tikhonov, Social Darwinism and Nationalism in Korea: The Beginnings, 1880-1910. 58 Zarrow 230. Tikhonov notes that this essay was taken up by Confucian reformer Chang Chiyŏn, who published his translations of Liang in 1908 in a collection titled “The Soul of China” (Chungguk hon) in which he showed that Korea, like China, could “play the role of a promising youth” if it were properly reformed (2010) 88.  28 considered to be passive objects of reform.60 Because Ch’oe Namsŏn was the first to publish magazines aimed specifically at a non-adult audience, the essays, translations, and illustrations that delineate his discourse about youth and which he published in his magazines will be examined briefly.  Ch’oe Namsŏn’s magazine Sonyŏn, the title of which reverberated throughout many of the magazine’s articles, seems, from its orthography, to address itself toward literate children that can easily navigate the mixed Chinese-Korean vernacular kukhanmun script—aged, perhaps, fifteen and over. While some of the early volumes appear to have been written with a younger audience in mind, judging from the relative paucity of Chinese characters, the magazine became increasingly dense in content and complex in orthography. In addition, it is clear from the editor’s notes to his readers in the opening volume that the magazine is not intended for young readers only; their parents and older siblings are addressed as the caretakers of the assumed audience, and are included as accomplices in the project of education and reform of the young readers.61  Ch’oe’s decision to create Sonyŏn was inspired, no doubt, by the publishing industry in Japan and China. By the end of the Meiji period (1868-1912) most Japanese books and newspapers were using moveable type; these new press technologies made it possible to produce print media more efficiently, including, of course, the production of magazines.62 In the serial essay titled 少年時言 (Sonyŏn siŏn; On childhood) and subtitled “少年의 旣往과  59 Yun Yŏngsil (2008) 103-8. 60 Yun Yŏngsil (2008) 101. 61 Other magazines published by Ch’oe with explicit educational materials include Pulgŭn chǒgori (1913.1-1913.7) , Aidŭlboi (1913.9-1914.8) and Saebyŏl (1913.9-1915.1). All three were published after Sonyŏn had ceased. 62 Kornicki, The Book in Japan, 166.  29 밋 將來” (Sonyŏn ŭi kiwang kwa mit changnae; The Past and Future of sonyŏn),63 Ch’oe remarks on how amazed he was to discover a highly developed print culture in Shanghai and particularly the various newspapers in Japan, and that this is what motivated him to develop a publishing culture of equal standing in Korea.  It was not, however, positive experiences alone that inspired Ch’oe Namsŏn. Yun (2008) argues that Ch’oe’s idea to import his newly-acquired print technology know-how and establish the magazine Sonyŏn arose from a humiliating experience at Waseda University. This experience eventually drove him back to Korea and also motivated Ch’oe Namsŏn to disseminate his ideas about the youth of Korea as masters of their subjectivity.64 In addition, it seems that the creation of Ch’oe’s magazine was inspired by even more than his humiliating experience in Japan, and his exposure to new print technologies there.65 As Chŏn Sŏnggon notes (2008), the Japanese magazine 國民之友	 (Jap. Kokumin no tomo, Friend of the Citizen]66 launched by Tokutomi Sohō (1863-1957) in 1887 played an important role in the conception of the idea for Ch’oe’s magazine. This magazine established a connection between youth and nation in a way that spoke clearly to Ch’oe Namsŏn’s budding nationalism. Of particular note is its editor’s emphasis on the dichotomy of old (Eastern, aging, irrelevant, outdated) versus new (Western, youth, reform). What the magazine argued more broadly was  63 Sonyŏn 1910 4.6, 12-24. 64 Yun Yŏngsil (2008) 107. 65 In Japan, creation of a modern canon for children was rooted in the educational reforms and growing capitalism of the late 1800s and early 1900s. See Torigoe (ed.), The Japanese Children's Literature History we Learn First (Hajimete manabu Nihon jidō bungakushi はじ めて学ぶ日本児童文学史), 70-71. Quoted in Carter, A Study of Children’s Magazines, 55. 66 The magazine apparently enjoyed a robust circulation of over 10,000 copies per month (Chŏn Sŏnggon 38).  30 for the collapse of boundaries between self and nation by insisting on the critical importance of the individual—the young individual—in the larger workings of politics.67  Ch’oe was inspired by magazines that followed the publication of the Japanese magazine Kokumin no tomo, such as Shōkokumin (Young Citizens, 少国民), a popular magazine which sold “an unprecedented 8,000 per issue after the Russo-Japanese War in 1905”68); Shōnen-en (Children’s Garden, 少年園), published in 1888; and Shōnen sekai (Children’s World, 少年世界), which ran from 1895 to 1933. Shōnen sekai  included editorials, short stories, historical and legendary pieces, scientific notes, humorous pieces, travel essays and other kinds of miscellaneous writings and illustrations that were meant to prepare young people as citizens in their developing nation as a part of the modern world.69  Shōnen-en promoted itself as educational not only to its youthful readers but also to their parents and educators;70 it also recognized “the need to include amusing stories in order to sell in the consumer-driven market.”71  The concept of the child in the Japanese magazine Shōnen-en (Children’s Garden, 少年 園) was, according to Yun Yongsil, a child outside politics, a child that is a passive receptacle of education, a “flower of the world”. But it was this formula of a child outside politics that, in  67 Chŏn Sŏnggon 37-41. 68 Carter, A Study of Children’s Magazines, 35-6. 69 Ōtake Kiyomi, Kŭndae han-il adong munhwa wa munhak kwangyesa (1895-1945) 39. 70 Chŏn Sŏnggon 38. 71 Ikeda, Junya. “Meiji jidai matsuki no jidō bungaku” 18. Quoted in Carter, A Study of Children’s Magazines, 56.  31 Ch’oe’s mind, could not possibly work in Korea.72 Ch’oe famously opened the first issue of Sonyŏn with the following pronouncement:  “Let us make our great nation (taehan) into a nation of youth (sonyŏn); in order to realize this goal, let us educate and reform our youth so that they may bear that responsibility.”73  The intent of the magazine Sonyŏn, Ch’oe explains to the reader, is to educate (敎導, K. kyodo) the new Korean children (sindaehan sonyŏn) so as to turn them into “enlightened people, thinking people, knowledgable people, so that they might be able to carry their heavy burden.”74 For Ch’oe, then, Korean youth (sonyŏn) are not to bear the full brunt of the present; they are bestowed with a certain degree of freedom in order to observe, experience, and absorb knowledge. Ch’oe’s approach put an increasing emphasis on self-cultivation and obtaining knowledge through experimentation, an approach that was influenced in no small part by An Ch’angho.75 But as Yun Yŏngsil points out, the signifier sonyŏn and its signified ‘youth’ were unstable concepts. Ch’oe replaced the word sonyŏn in the title of one of his monthly articles, changing the title from “Hyŏndae sonyŏn sinhohŭp” [New Breathing of the Modern sonyŏn]76 to “Sinsidae ch’ŏngnyŏn ŭi sinhohŭp” [New Breathing of our New Generation of ch’ŏngnyŏn].77 And indeed, Sonyŏn catered increasingly to an older young adult (ch’ŏngnyŏn) group through complex essays written in more dense orthography. The youth group that Ch’oe  72 Yun Yŏngsil, 113-4. 73 우리 大韓으로 하여곰 少年의 나라로 하라 그리하랴 하면 能히이 責任을 勘當 하도록 그를 敎導하여라. 74 (1910 4.6) 18. 75 An (1878-1938) was a nationalist and an educator who took a leading role in Korea’s struggle for independence. He played an important role in the immigrant community in the United States, and was also a key member of the Provincial Government in Shanghai in 1919. 76 1909 2.2  32 was committed to, the ch’ŏngnyŏnghoe (again, note the term “young adult” rather than “child”), adopted the magazine Sonyŏn as its voice; and as the imagined readership of Sonyŏn became older and more abstract, so did the term sonyŏn  transform from indicating less a particular age than a more general symbol of progress.78 2.4 Sonyŏn and Nationalism Each issue of Sonyŏn opened with Ch’oe’s aforementioned famous quote, “Let us make our great nation (taehan) into a nation of youth (sonyŏn); in order to realize this goal, let us educate and reform our youth so that they may bear that responsibility”.79 One of the last issues of Sonyŏn, number 17 (1910 4.5), published four months before the official annexation, opens with a list of the ten virtues of the citizens of the New Great Korea:   Figure 1 Ten Virtues80  77 Sonyŏn 1909 2.3. 78 Yun Yŏngsil, 119 79 The quote appears in issues 1-7, 12, 14-16 and in the last one, issue 20. 80 Sonyŏn (1910 4.5).  33 Figure 1 (from top to bottom, right to left) reads: Purity, Brightness, Sturdiness, Harmony, Truthfulness, Loyalty, Diligence, Justice, Beauty, and Tidiness. These categories might be translations of similar categories in Japanese; in any case they are not so much Confucian as they are “modern”: “Brightness” refers to Ch’oe’s own theory known later as paksasang or Theory of Brightness, in which he elaborated on the inherent potential of Korea to serve as a beacon of light in the darkness of the transition into modernity81; Elements such as “Sturdiness” or “Tidiness” indicate a kind of physicality that is achieved through a contemporary attention to details. The title Sonyŏn appears in large font, front and center on the same page, but the term child (sonyŏn) is missing from the subtitle on the right, which reads sindaehan kungmin (new Great Korean citizen) rather than sindaehan sonyŏn (new great Korean child). This might indicate that there is a distinction being made between the expectations of the new Korean citizen and the sonyŏn child. By association, then, the reader can connect these ten virtues to be virtues expected of sonyŏn—the most important citizens.  The sonyŏn of Korea were addressed either (as in the quote) as the sonyŏn of taehan (great Korea) or, alternatively, as sindaehan sonyŏn (the sonyŏn of new and great Korea). These sonyŏn were not to be celebrated so much as individuals but rather were encouraged to see themselves as crucial segments of society and their nation; a nation whose development and success, in turn, depended wholly on their individual efforts. In his magazine Sonyŏn, then, Ch’oe constructed the term sonyŏn to imply not only youth in terms of age; more broadly, sonyŏn represented Korea’s rejuvenation and innate potential for growth, reform, enlightenment, and politicization. Underlying these constructions was Ch’oe’s belief in the force of progress.  81 For an elaboration on Ch’oe’s philosophy, see chapter three, “The Light of the East: Religion and the Korean Nation, 1900-1945,” in Kenneth Koo’s dissertation titled “Configuring Korean Religion, 1900-1960.”  34 Indeed, the dissemination of national identity within a Social Darwinist frame played a central role in both the foreground and the background of the definition and construction of the sonyŏn. The construction of the national identity of youth as Korean in the specific context of early twentieth-century regional (China and Japan) politics was the driving force behind the magazine. 2.4.1 Rejuvenation and Growth  Nothing illustrates the idea of rejuvenation and the potential for growth better than Ch’oe’s oft-quoted poem, “hae egesŏ sonyŏn ege” (From the Sea to the Boy),82 considered by some to be the watershed that separates premodern and modern literature in Korea.83 The poem is written in mixed script, i.e. both with the vernacular script (hangŭl) and Chinese characters (hanja), but with a much more frequent use of the vernacular.84 The narrating voice is that of the sea, which boasts of its infinite power and ability to shatter anything that stands in its way. The sea brags about its conquest of the natural world (mountains and boulders); of heros from Chinese and Western history (Emperor Qin Shi Huang and Napoleon); and of its allegiance to the sky. It hates all people except for one kind: it loves the group called sonyŏn, who are brave and of pure emotions, precious and lovely, so much so that the sea wants to kiss them. The  82 “海에게서 少年에게” Sonyŏn 1, 2-4. 83 Peter Lee notes that “The ‘new poetry’ movement began with the publication of [Ch’oe’s poem]… the poem’s inventions include the copious use of punctuation marks (a convention borrowed from the West), stanzas of unequal length, a string of onomatopoeia in the first and seventh line of each stanza, and the dominant images of the sea and children, which had been little mentioned in classical Korean poetry.” (Peter Lee, Modern Korean Literature: An Anthology, xvi-xvii) Ch’oe himself notes that his attempts at poetry were experiments with new poetry in Korea (Sonyŏn 1909.4, 2). 84 The balance between vernacular script and Chinese characters changes from piece to piece and particularly from issue to issue, with the later volumes being filled more with Chinese characters, in much smaller letters and with fewer spaces between the lines. This can indicate  35 sonyŏn implied in Ch’oe’s poem seem to be children of a younger age rather that the older, more politically active youth that are the target audience of Ch’oe’s writing in later issues.  The critical significance of the sea and its presence throughout the magazine has been pointed out by Kwŏn Podŭrae (2005). Ch’oe was a prolific translator, and Sonyŏn contains his translations (from the Japanese original) of Tolstoy’s short stories, excerpts from Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels and Defoe’s Robinson Crusoe, and poems by Lord Byron. The aforementioned poem, “From the Sea to the Boy,” was likely inspired by Byron’s narrative poem, “Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage,” published between 1812 and 1818.85 Byron’s poem was published in Sonyŏn in 1910.86  The sea appears throughout the magazine in poems such as this famous one; through essays with titles such as “Haesang taehansa” (海上大韓史, Nautical History of Korea) that ran for multiple issues; in a series of musings about the sea such as “Pada ran kŏsŭn irŏhan kŏsio” 87 [On the significance of the sea]88; and poems such as “Sammyŏn  that the actual readers and consumers of this magazine were much older than the imagined reader of this poem seems to indicate. 85 Theresa Hyun (1997) points to the symmetry between Ch’oe’s poem and Byron; she also explains that Ch’oe’s choice to translate this particular work has been pointed out to be in direct connection with its appearance in translation in Japan in 1908. 86 For example, Canto the Fourth, Verse 179 (published in Sonyŏn in its original English as verse (Roman numeral) I) begins like this: “Roll on, thou deep and dark blue ocean—roll!/Ten thousand fleets sweep over thee in vain’/Man marks the earth with ruin—his control/ Stops with the shore;—upon the watery plain/ The wrecks are all thy deed, nor doth remain/ A shadow of man’s ravage, save his own/ When, for a moment, like a drop of rain.’ He sinks into thy depths, with bubbling groan./ Without a grave, unknelled, uncoffined, and unknown.” (Sonyŏn 4.6, 10; punctuation in the original.) 87 Sonyŏn 1 (1908 1.1, 37). 88 One quote, apparently written by Ch’oe Namsŏn himself, reads:  "로빈손 크루소"는 海事에 關한  한小傳奇라 그러나 世界의 海王이라는 英國의 海軍은 此로 因하야 成就하얏다하나니 吾人은 此에 觀感하야 興起티아니치못라리로다.” [“Robinson Crusoe may be a minor and fantastic tale,  but the fact is that England has become master of the seas because of its naval forces; I have witnessed this and cannot possibly remain unmoved.”]  36 hwanhaeguk” (三面環海國; Surrounded on three sides by the Sea),89 a three-stanza poem that describes the vibrancy of people hard at work under the energizing sun, and in which each stanza ends with the phrase “Yes it’s true, our nation also has a sea in the East/South/West.”90 These essays encourage children to think about the sea as a metaphor for greater adventure and motivate them to push the frontiers of their imaginations and think of the wider world as the domain of their play.91  Some of Ch’oe’s pieces are more explicitly didactic than others. Take for example, this section from Ch’oe’s translation of Robinson Crusoe. At the end of the translation, the narrator suddenly turns to the readers and informs them that they might find the story lengthy and wordy, but adds this personal note:  If there is one thing I want, it is that our Sindaehan sonyŏn [new children of great Korea], who have a bright and glorious road ahead of them, will not think strangely of exploring the sea—which is a pocket of fun, a warehouse of treasure—that surrounds their country on three sides. I wish that you will also make the sea your friend, make the sea your teacher, make the sea your playground, make the sea into your workplace; master the sea, and make an effort to humor it, as well… and if I may say one thing more, it is this: do not think of using the sea for any personal fancy; rather, make time for its study and research, for its enriching development, and do so with a true heart and  89 Sonyŏn 10 (1909 1.8, 2-4). 90 See, for example, the ending of the first stanza: 그러타 우리나라는 東方도 바다이니 라. Sonyŏn 10 (1909 2.8, 2). 91 Samuel Baker (2010) notes that Britain’s command of the sea had taken on heightened significance during the war with Napoleon, and that “the maritime dynamic of expansion and insularity informed the idea of British nationhood… Romantic-period writers [like Lord Byron] shared and were understood to share a renewed appreciation of the ocean as a geopolitical domain ruled by British naval heroism.” (1) In his book, Baker argues that the Romantic idea of culture was formed within an imagined space which was shaped by Britain’s maritime-imperial aspirations.  37 clear intentions for larger, higher aspirations, for the good of culture and for the benefit of the country.92  However, Kwŏn Podŭrae argues that by turning his focus toward the empty spaces of the sea, Ch’oe is essentially shying away from providing a more confrontational, explicitly nationalistic rhetoric. She supports her argument by providing examples from Ch’oe’s translations of Tolstoy, published in Sonyŏn, in which he deliberately eliminated the more anarchist and anti-nationalist elements claiming that “the children of Korea do not need this right now.”93 Ch’oe wrote (see Figure 2), “The love felt by our sonyŏn is not one that pushes toward conquest of the West nor of Japan. It is only this: self-encouragement, self-progress, self-fulfillment, self-protection”94; note also the printed circles included along the text for emphasis, indicating how important Ch’oe thought this was.  92 그러나 한가지 願하난것은 가장 光明스럽고 榮譽잇슬 여러분의 나라형편이 三 面으로 滋味의 주머니오 보배의 庫ㅅ집인 바다에 둘닌것을 尋常한 일노 알지말어 ...恒常 그를 벗하고 그를 스승하고 또 거긔를 노리터로알고 그를 스승하고 또 거 긔를 부리고 그의 脾胃를 마초기에 마음 두시기를 바라옵나니 엇접지아니한말삼 이오나 깁치 드러주시오 그런데 한마듸 부쳐 말할것은 우리모양으로 私利와작난 으로 바다를 쓰실 생각말고 좀 크게 놉게 人文을 爲하야 國益을 爲하야 眞實한 마음과 精誠스러운 뜻으로學理硏究, 富源開發等 조흔 消遣을 잡으시기를 바람이 외다. Sonyŏn 10 (1909 2.8) 43-4. 93 See Kwŏn Podŭrae (2005), 64. 94 Sonyŏn 5 (1909 2.3) 53.  38  Figure 2 Emphatic Circles  2.4.2 Reform, Enlightenment, and Politicization  How explicit was the nationalist rhetoric espoused by Ch’oe? While the above section promotes a love-of-country (aeguk) that is somewhat introspective and even religious,95 other examples throughout the magazine provide practical knowledge that may contribute to a nationalist sentiment. Continuing with the sea metaphor, which appears throughout his work, Ch’oe opens a series of essays titled “Haesang taehansa” (海上大韓史, Nautical History of Korea),	 intended for the kungmin (國民), or the nation’s citizens96, with the question/subtitle, “Why have we repressed our sense of adventure toward the open seas?”97 In order to achieve their full potential as citizens and creators of a new civilization, Ch’oe explains that children require enlightenment in the form of both technical knowledge and literary knowledge of the aesthetics  95 The connotations of 自勵自進自成自守 (self-encouragement, self-progress, self-fulfillment, self-protection) can be said to reverberate with Confucian rhetoric which emphasizes that change must first occur within the individual in order to take effect externally. 96 Sonyŏn 1908.1.1, 31.  39 of the sea and how it has been celebrated. While this particular section does not overstep its educational boundaries into nationalist rhetoric—intimating that, at least at this point in time, ‘modern’ education and knowledge of the world is a goal unto itself—other essays and poems are more explicitly nationalistic.  Ch’oe constantly addressed the immanent potential that he saw in the sonyŏn. The purpose of this knowledge was not only for personal self-fulfillment, as Ch’oe notes in the opening pages of his inaugural issue of Sonyŏn. In the first of a series of essays titled “Sonyŏn siŏn” [少年時言, On Childhood] and subtitled “Yŏrŏbun ŭn ttŭsŭl ŏtŏk’e seusiryŏo?” [How are you intending to fulfill your destiny?], Ch’oe compares sonyŏn to flour or rice dough that may be formed easily, but that can be deformed and spoil just as easily. Sonyŏn must prepare for their lives as if they are preparing for a long journey, and, most importantly, Ch’oe reminds them that the destiny of a nation depends without question on its people. Children must therefore be aware that the degree to which each individual fulfills his own destiny will affect the destiny of the entire nation.98  A more powerful message is contained in the poem Pada wie yong sonyŏn (Brave Boys of the Sea; See Appendix). The poem opens with a full one-page illustration of three boys in a boat being tossed about by violent waves (Figure 3); the dramatic contrast is accentuated by the lines of the waves and the dark rock, and by the sharp angle of the boat in comparison with the rock which is dangerously close.  97 Sonyŏn 1908.1.1, 31. 98 Sonyŏn 1908 volume 1, 5-10.  40  Figure 3 Boys at Sea The poem opens: “Three boys of the Sea/ are the grandest, most splendid children/ of all those multitudes on the Korean peninsula.”99 The boys are faced with a violent storm that threatens to topple their little boat, but they stand up to the storm with great bravery. They sing a song that can be heard by all; in this song they praise their land, and evoke the maker, hananim.100 This maker, (also rendered with the Chinese character for master, 主, and vernacularized as skŭisŏ, or “His Eminence”) has created their country for a reason, and asks them to be strong in the face of upcoming great calamities. The boys then swear to fulfill their ultimate goal:  Valiant children, brave hearts! You will prevail and be victorious. The Dragon Fortress will be ours  99 여긔잇난 세少年은 바다아해니 / 韓半島가 나서길은 만흔목숨중/ 가장크고 거 룩히될 寧馨兒니라. Sonyŏn 1909 2.10, 28. 100 See Don Baker’s article on the construction of terminology for Korean monotheism (2002).  41  And we will preside over the Temple of Jerusalem. Once we are the proud Kings of the World,  We will build a road in the Rock of Truth and pave it with love, and fulfill our dream of founding the Land of Heaven here; from start to finish, the future will be impeccable.101  The explicit intention of the boys in their journey is to become “Kings of the World” (onsegye ŭi taeju)—from the mythological Dragon Palace in the depths of the sea to the sacred temple in Jerusalem—and to build a utopia on earth. As Kwŏn Podŭrae states, however, the suggestion to replace reality with a utopia is expressed in abstract terms—“hidden” in poetry and decorated with hypothetical and fantastical symbolism—that what can be mistaken for nationalistic ambitions is diverted, as she claims, toward “unpopulated” and unthreatening spaces.102 2.5 Sonyŏn and Social Darwinism  Ch’oe’s articulation of nationalism might have been somewhat understated and abstract in the examples above, but from the March issue of 1910 until the magazine’s cessation in 1911, Sonyŏn contained essays and poems that expressed more explicit nationalist rhetoric. The March 1910 issue is a volume of poetry dedicated to Tosan An Ch’angho that celebrates Mt. T’aebaek—a mountain that has been celebrated in Korea as symbol of strength and pride, and is the birthplace of Tan’gun, the mythical progenitor of the Korean race. The poem T’aebaek sanbu [太白山賦, Ode to Mt. T’aebaek] reads:  101 한갈갓흔 우리精誠 우리勇猛이/ 마조막의 큰勝捷을 엇게만들어/ 바다엔 龍主 宮이 내것이되고  / 陸地에선 예루살넴 聖殿까지도/ 우리손에 드러와서 모시게되 여/ 보기좃케 왼世界의 大主된뒤에/ 正義石에 길을닥고 사랑을깔아/ 이곳에다 하 날나라 세우난責望/ 압뒤끝이 맥긴하게 다한지로다.	 Sonyŏn 1909 2.10, 30. 102 Kwŏn Podŭrae (2005), 72.  42  The sky is round and the earth beneath is flat, but our beloved Mount T’aebaek comes shooting up! It stands alone—it stands on its own—it stands out. Is it a poker? A fire tong? A calligraphy brush? It is a surging tower of glorious light! Is it a lightening rod? A flag pole? An electric pole? It is the bulging, beautifully courageous forearm of the boys of Chosŏn!103 Kwŏn (2005) points out that the force of this rhetoric—which mobilizes the metaphoric power of Mount T’aebaek—in fact replaces the sea imagery that was so prominent in earlier volumes. Ch’oe’s use of sea imagery, which Kwŏn characterizes as a “horizontal imagination,” is taken over by a “vertical imagination” of mountains.104 This metaphorical move, then, can be also interpreted as a rhetorical move from an abstract vision of national identity to a more concrete (or Freudian) articulation of identity.  Perhaps one of the examples that best demonstrates the strands of social Darwinist rhetoric that inspired Ch’oe’s writing is the piece titled “kukka ŭi kyŏngjaengnyŏk” (國家의競 爭力, The Competitiveness of a Nation].105 In this piece, Ch’oe elaborates on the correspondences between the animal kingdom and the political and social world of humans. In this analogy, the survival of a nation depends on its ability to develop its strength and competitiveness. This section is, in fact, a translation of a section out of a book on anthropology  103 하날ㅅ面은 휘둥그럿코 땅ㅅ바닥은 펑퍼짐한데, 우리님---太白이는 웃둑 獨立--自立--特立. 송굿?火箸? 筆筒의 붓? 榮光의 尖塔! 避雷針? 旗ㅅ대? 電杆木? 온갓 아름다운 勇이 한데로 뭉킈여 된 朝鮮男兒의 至精大醇의 큰 팔뚝! Sonyŏn 1910.2, 6. 104 Kwŏn Podŭrae (2005) 78. 105 Sonyŏn 1909 2.10, 108-9.  43 and geography (地人論; Theory of Place and Man) written by the Japanese Christian scholar and theologian Uchimura Kanzō (1861-1930). In this work, Uchimura argues both for the necessity of developing a deeper understanding of the connection between culture and geography, and at the same time for the necessity of looking beyond one’s country to the culture of the wider world.106 In general, however, the driving force behind Sonyŏn was a combination of three things: the Social Darwinist rhetoric that called for the renewal and reform of the nation in order to secure its survival, a nationalist rhetoric that emphasized the relationship between the individual and nation, and a rhetoric that emphasized the acquisition of modern knowledge, which would facilitate progress that was at once individual and collective, spiritual and material.  The intersection of child and nation can be explored through the physical space of the nation on the pages of Sonyŏn. As mentioned above, Ch’oe’s vision of the nation in its physical manifestation was deeply influenced by contemporary Japanese writers such as Uchimura Kanzō, whose work 地人論 [Theory of Place and Man] Ch’oe translated and included in Sonyŏn. Ch’oe urged his young readers to take Japan as a model of progress, and which contrasted very clearly with defeated China.107 In particular, Ch’oe developed a theory he called the “Peninsular Culture Theory” (半島文化論, Pando munhwaron), upon which he expounded in Sonyŏn. According to this theory, because of Chosŏn’s peninsular geography, it has been, like many other peninsulas, home to many heros.108 Chosŏn’s great potential stems from its geographical perimeters — being surrounded by the sea on three sides and by land on  106 Sonyŏn 1909 2.10, 90-5. 107 Chŏn Sŏnggon 60. 108 Chŏn Sŏnggon 62.  44 one, it synthesizes the culture of land and sea.109 Due to its geographical perimeters, then, Chosŏn was always open to the culture of the world, and was therefore a gatekeeper of world unification.110 But the responsibility for carrying this burden, Ch’oe insists, lies with Chosŏn’s children. “Brave Boys of the Sea” ends:  Korean peninsula—body hidden by the sea Korean peninsula—blessed with such brave children Korean peninsula—endowed with such good fortune! I know that you are the youngest child of the King of the World. May you embrace your complete and pure happiness and become the Shimmering Light, under Heaven, on Earth.111  In this poem, Ch’oe’s brings together his vision for both Korea the nation and Korean youth. The Korean peninsula enjoys a propitious position as the link between land and sea, and it is filled with privileged children who are the beacon of light that will shine the way for Korea as it moves out of its dark past and into its brilliant future. 2.6 Sonyŏn and Modernity Ch’oe Namsŏn’s magazine Sonyŏn marked a turning point in the evolution of print culture in Korea. It did so by drawing its readers’ attention to both external and internal content that was different from anything that had come before it. The magazine’s layout made use of color, design, photographs, and illustrations that were meant either to supplement the printed words on the page or to make it more catchy and attractive. It also used visual conventions to relay meaning about the world that would provide children with the necessary information and  109 Sonyŏn 1909 2.6, 22-25. 110 Sonyŏn 1909 2.10, 38-43. 111 바다로써 몸을 가린 大韓半島는/이런少年 만히가진 大韓半島는/크고조흔 職分 가진 大韓半島는/네가아니 大主宰의 막내童이냐/온전하고 깨끗한福 가초가져서/ 天上天下 짝이업난 光明이로다.	 Sonyŏn (1909) 2.10, 31.  45 inspiration—primarily through modern knowledge and understanding of the world—to break away from the past and create a new Korea. It is with these innovations in mind that we turn to examine the role of visual culture in Sonyŏn, and to consider the way in which the visual culture participated in the construction of the imagined child reader.  2.6.1 Visual Culture in Sonyŏn Ch’oe Namsŏn’s encounter with youth and adult magazines during his sojourn in Japan, including the Korean magazine for overseas students, the T’aegŭk hakpo (J. Taikyoku gakuho) were hugely influential on him both as a writer and as a producer of books. Ch’oe received firsthand training during the period in which he worked at a Japanese publishing house, the Naikoku kangyo hakurankai (內國勸業博覽會). Equipped with this new technological knowledge, Ch’oe return to Korea and set up his own publishing house called the Sinmungwan (新文館). And in 1908 the first issue of Sonyŏn was published. As Yun Sejin points out, Ch’oe Namsŏn established his magazine as a platform from which to disseminate modern knowledge about the world as a part of the larger project of constructing the new (and modern) Korean sonyŏn. Without modern knowledge, Ch’oe believed it would be impossible to lead the new nation and civilization. One of the aspects of Japanese magazines that most impressed Ch’oe was the presence of a wide range of visual and textual content. The publication of Sonyŏn corresponded to the period in which visual arts began to gain recognition in Korea as a field of study, and more and more printed materials in Korea carried  46 visual images.112 What distinguished Sonyŏn from those magazines that came before it was precisely its visual component: no longer was the magazine reading experience solely a ‘reading’ one, but now it became a viewing one, too.113 The act of seeing became an act of owning knowledge—not abstract knowledge, but concrete knowledge represented by visual images that could not be dismissed or negated.   The visual aspects of Sonyŏn were most novel, particularly in the use of design (experimentation with font, color, and text layout), and in their insertion of decorative illustrations, repetitive icons, maps and photographs. The use of color in the opening page of the magazine served, no doubt, as a ‘hook’ to lure readers and whet their interest in taking up the magazine. And the use of decorative, graphic designs functioned not only as striking visuals that supported the text through repetitive reproductions of certain icons and images, but also served the purpose of providing welcome variety to long pages of text. Besides color, font size was also used to call attention to certain parts of the text. Figures 6-9 are examples of the way font size was blown up to emphasize certain sentences or section titles (figure 4); to provide the title with some flourish; and some designs were added to provide emphasis in the text, as in figure 2, in which the importance of the words on the page is emphasized with the help of small circles along the text:  112 Yun Sejin 24-6. 113 Yun Sejin 31; Yun also notes that the cover of the first volume of Ch’ŏngch’un (1914), for example, was done by Korea’s very first painter who had mastered western techniques, Ko Hŭidong (1886-1965); the cover carries a portrait of a tiger (the symbol of Korea) flanked/tamed by a Korean male dressed in a Greek (i.e. Western)-style white cloth. Incidentally. Yun points out that magazines such as Ch’ŏngch’un provided the space for up-and-coming artists to display their work at a time when such exposure was limited (41).  47     Figure 4 Large Fonts     Figure 5 Frilly Fonts  Text layout was also experimented with, particularly with poetry. Compare the layout of these two poems: Figure 6 reads as usual from right to left, top to bottom; Figure 7,  titled “Sŏngjin” [stars] is laid out in a diagonal variation, with a decorative star placed at the top of each stanza:  Figure 6 Mt. T’aebaek      Figure 7 Diagonal    Illustrations played several roles in the magazine Sonyŏn. They supported the text (by providing supplemental visual information); appeared as recurring icons to remind the reader of the connection between sections of different issues; functioned as emphatic conventions; or  48 simply served as pleasant diversions that accompanied lengthy texts. As supplementary illustrations, they helped readers visualize certain aspects of the texts. For example, figure 8 accompanying an essay about European ocean culture, or figure 9 about the history of flying machines:  Figure 8 Boats          Figure 9 Flying Machines  Certain icons recurred in several issues alongside certain essays, to help signal to the reader that the essays were part of a longer series. Figure 10 appears in each article in the series titled “The Nautical History of Korea.”  The section about Napoleon was accompanied by an illustration of his head (figure 11). Other icons (figure 12) recurred throughout the magazine; they did not add anything to the text but appeared as random decorative objects:  49  Figure 10 Nautical History Figure 11 Napoleon        Figure 12 Random  Illustrations were also centerpieces of essays about geography. The magazine was most concerned with passing knowledge about the world on to its young readers. And a crucial element of this didactic concern with world politics affairs was an education about maps.114 See, for example, the section about geography in the first issue of Sonyŏn. Here, children are encouraged to visualize countries in terms of animals or familiar objects. Contrary to those that argued that Korea looks like a rabbit (figure 14), Korea, the narrator explains, looks much more like a tiger (figure 15), and the tiger image recurs in later issues, as well. The Sea of Japan, by contrast, is visualized as a rabbit (figure 16), which is, of course, inferior to the Korean tiger: the animals symbolize content and not just form. Figure 17 is supposed to be a bear and one of Korea’s provinces; readers are urged to guess which province it is and to send their guesses directly to the magazine editors.  114 On the contribution of maps to the formation of national identity, see Siam Mapped: a History of the Geo-Body of a Nation. For a discussion of maps as cultural objects and mapping as a social and cultural activity, see Pickles (2004) and Cosgrove (2005). Cosgrove notes that “to achieve immutability (for example, by means of a scientific map), the information contained undergoes transformation, a process which, in principle, is not different from that of artistic production of spatial images.” (37)  50  Figure 13 Rabbit Korea                     Figure 14 Tiger Korea    Figure 15 Japan Sea Bunny                     Figure 16 Bear Province  Korea had to be defined in both its physical constitution (geography) and with its own unified, imagined past (history). The first part of this process was the clear delineation of Korea’s borders. One of the ways in which to capture the nation’s borders was through pictographic representations like those above, and these images served as tools in the imagination and strengthening of national identity.115 Other maps of the world (e.g. figure 17, figure 18) also appeared frequently in the magazine. Figure 18, for example, illustrated Ch’oe’s essay on the military might and influence on the British Empire and an analysis of its success. It shows the extent of the British Empire by blackening its colonies; in this map, Korea is negligible to say the least:  115 Kwŏn, Yongsŏn 95.  51    Figure 17 England Map   Figure 18  World Map Sŏ Tongsu argues that Sonyŏn was intended to convince its readers of the connection between geographical expansion and modernity; the magazine conveyed the sense of power and importance of the world’s nations by drawing these and other small maps of the world, for easy consumption. Once the magazine laid out the geographical discourse of modernity by pitting strong, developed (imperialist and colonizing) nations against the smaller, weaker ones, the stage was then set to enlighten the readers as to what constituted the essence of being a modern subject.116  Photographs in the magazine played an important role in exposing their viewers to a range of experiences, thereby emphasizing and spreading a certain “fluency” of modern images and ideas.117  By displaying photographs of faraway places or famous foreigners, the magazine eliminated the distance in time and space to allow for quick consumption of indisputable, knowable images. In every volume of Sonyŏn, the opening page and table of contents were followed by a page that showcased up to four photographs. The photographs are themed—they might capture a beautiful landscape, a famous monument, or the faces of famous figures; these “genres” are never mixed. Almost all the photographs represent positive examples: either grand  116 ”Adong ŭi palgyŏn” 250-251. 117 Kwŏn Yongsŏn 85.  52 monuments or European cities, or heroic figures to be emulated. The photographs are never decorations; rather, they take up their own space on the page in order to draw the undivided attention of the viewer. There is no implicit criticism of these images: they take a central position in the magazine by standing on their own, with a small caption, as ‘previews’ to the rest of the magazine.  Landscapes include Niagara Falls and images from the North Pole; monuments included the Statue of Liberty (figure 19), the Arc du Triomphe in Paris, the Palace of Versailles and the Coliseum in Rome:   Figure 19 Statue of Liberty Portraits included Edward the Seventh, and illustrations of  Peter the Great, the Marquis de la Fayette, Benjamin Franklin, and Napoleon (figure 20). These men’s portraits were chosen for their symbolic representations of nationalist heroism.  53   Figure 20 Napoleon Heads  Other photographs were ethnographic, such as figure 21 of aboriginal people from the equator. Figure 22, titled “Japanese children in practice of martial arts and dance,” also contributed to the seeming compression of space and time, bringing faraway cultures and peoples to the fingertips of the readers.   54    Figure 21 Aborigines   Figure 22 Japanese Children  Most famous among these photographs is the photograph in the very first issue of Sonyŏn (figure 23), which shows the rather small and stiff Korean crown prince Yi Ŭn standing shoulder to elbow with the tall, distinguished-looking Resident-General of Korea Itō Hirobumi whose chest is decorated with medals and who enjoys a much more commanding presence by virtue of his height and the dominating darkness of his overcoat:  55  Figure 23 Crown Prince   By the later issues of 1910 and on the eve of official annexation, Ch’oe Namsŏn began to focus his interest on a new construct that would replace the sonyŏn, the children of Korea. He referred to them as ch’ŏngnyŏn (靑年, literally “ripe in years”) and dedicated a new magazine, ch’ŏngch’un, to their readership. The group of young people signified by the term ch’ŏngnyŏn was older than his imagined readers of the magazine Sonyŏn, more politically mature, more sophisticated and deemed much better prepared to react to the world around him. Ch’oe left the work he was doing for the magazine Sonyŏn in order to address a readership that he deemed, it seems, better prepared to tackle the task of modernization.     56 2.7 Conclusion  Ch’oe Namsŏn’s magazine Sonyŏn has been noted in scholarship for its hybridity:118 it was a milestone publication with a wide, unprecedented repertoire of text and images. Sonyŏn was the very first magazine of its kind to introduce to its readers literature—poetry, folk tales, travel essays, translated fiction, and essays on science and history. All these were accompanied by engaging illustrations, photographs, and other design conventions scattered throughout the magazine. Kwŏn Podŭrae (2007) argues that the visual and textual richness of the magazine attests to its aspiration to be more entertaining and less didactic.119  However, from an examination of its content, and taking into consideration that it appeared in 1908, years before many of Chosŏn Korea’s children would have had access to education (and certainly not many girls), it appears that Sonyŏn did not simply respond to the demand of its young readers. Readers, as literacy numbers show, were slow to appear. What the children’s magazine Sonyŏn set out to do, through its inventive layout and engaging content, was to construct, for the first time, a new kind of reader. This reader was youthful, but his youth was not only determined by his age and gender; he was defined by the content that was deemed appropriate and necessary to carry Chosŏn Korea out of its dark and stagnant past into a glorious, politically viable future. It was the responsibility of Sonyŏn to supply the modern knowledge that was going to be necessary to achieve this goal. Sonyŏn (the magazine) was to guide sonyŏn (the children) into political maturity with the ultimate goal of creating the national citizen (kungmin) of the New Great Korea (sindaehan). As Ch’oe notes:   118 Kwŏn Podŭrae (2007) 11. 119 Kwŏn Podŭrae (2007) 11.  57 I hope that the sonyŏn will always have a sturdy and overwhelming spirit and that a powerful wind and energy will shake them, so that more and more this new and great Han will belong to our sonyŏn; it is up to the sonyŏn to excite this nation, but it is in their power also to ruin it; it is up to the sonyŏn to retrieve what has been lost, and it is up to the sonyŏn to protect what is left. I wish to drive this into everyone’s minds and make it an inseparable part of us. Only in this way will we be able to find true relief for our sad hearts and negative aspirations.120  The momentum away from the past and toward the youthful present was driven by the subscription of Ch’oe and his peers to the theories of Social Darwinism. Part of the narrative of natural progress as suggested at the end of the nineteenth century by one of Japan’s leading ideologists, Katō Hiroyuki, was the belief that “in ‘civilized societies,’ natural selection favored those possessing superior ‘mental strength’—that is, superior knowledge and skills.”121 This belief justified the appropriation of lands of ‘inferior people’ by ‘superior people’ who had the ability, through their knowledge of science, to better use the resources and land. Besides the implications of the Social Darwinist rhetoric on education,122 it was only a matter of time before the child became the focus of national discourse as the most critical site of investment for advancement toward progress.123 For any society to succeed and prosper, education and cultivation had to begin with the child.  Scholarship on “formal” education in the period between 1906-1910 (Cho Yŏnsun et al.) indicates that while child-centered education had not yet been achieved, there was indeed a lively discussion in the print media about educational philosophies and the purpose of  120 이는 곳 우리 少年 사이에 恒常 剛健한 思潮가 漲落하고 豪壯한 氣風이 吹動 하야 次次 新大韓은 少年의 것인즉 이를 興盛케 함도 少年이오, 이를 衰亡케 함 도 少年이오 이믜 일허바린 것을 탸다 올 사람도 少年이오 아직 남어 잇는 것을 保全함도 少年이어니 하난 생각이 아모의 腦에도 박혀서 牢不可拔하게 됨을 생각 한즉, 그러케 슲흔 마음과 죠치 안은 뜻이 雲散霧消하얏소이다.	 Sonyŏn (1908 1.2) 10. 121 See Tikhonov 139. 122 See Vladimir Tikhonov (2010) 137-166.  58 education. Both public (pro-Japanese) and private (nationalist) schools taught subjects that were featured in Sonyŏn including geography, history, and classical Chinese (hanmun). Both school curricula were apparently committed to teaching “practical” skills including technical, agricultural and industrial knowledge. But while public schools focused on physical, moral and general education that was needed in ‘daily life’, private education before 1910 was committed to breeding anti-Japanese sentiment and independence through empowerment.124 Needless to say, private schools were soon shut down by the Japanese, but it seems that Ch’oe Namsŏn was driven to write passionately in his magazine because formal education was still slow to spread. He apparently felt that state education did not satisfactorily convey the knowledge necessary to become a modern citizen. Sonyŏn devoted itself to inspiring curiosity about geography (both of Korea and the rest of the world) and history (overcoming the dark, immediate past and recalling the bright and glorious distant past), and it provided lessons on work ethics and morality that befitted the new, modern citizen. With regard to geography, Sonyŏn sparked the magazine’s readers’ interest by providing a range of maps and photographs, which provided the illusion of proximity and accessibility. It also ignited its readers’ sense of adventure and encouraged them to explore of the world around them. Ch’oe Namsŏn also developed his “peninsula” theory in the magazine, in which he expounded on Chosŏn’s inherent ability—granted to it by virtue of its geographical position—and called to its readers to fulfill their duty to connect the cultures of land and sea.  The transmission of knowledge is a central project of modernity, and it was modernity that was embraced in Sonyŏn. The knowledge produced in Sonyŏn, deemed essential to the process of becoming a new citizen in the Great New Korea (sindaehan), supports the definitions  123 Honda Masuko 18.  59 of modernity as they are delineated by Janet Poole.125 Modern knowledge of the world was communicated through photographs and maps that collapsed the distance between ‘here’ and ‘there’, and through educational articles with titles such as “Ponggil’s Geography Hour” (ponggiri chiri kongbu), “Natural Sciences” (理科敎室), “English Classroom” (英語敎室) and “Classical Chinese” (漢文敎室). Essays such as “Classical Chinese” were geared more toward the acquisition of practical Chinese vocabulary than the kind of classical Chinese education intended for the reading of classical Chinese texts.126  Ch’oe Namsŏn also encouraged a dialogue with his readers by urging them to observe their surroundings—the language and customs they saw around them—and write back to the editor of the magazine so that their observations would be published in the section “Communications” (小年通信). Knowledge about the world was also communicated through Ch’oe Namsŏn’s translations of Robinson Crusoe, Gulliver’s Travels and Les Misérables which were published in the magazine. Moral or ethical education was conveyed through sections like “Didactic Lessons” (小年訓) and Aesop’s Fables (not to mention the biographies of Napoleon, Peter the Great and George Washington, chosen for the political roles they played in the formation of their respective countries).  Ch’oe looked upon the immediate past with extreme distaste, and in his writing he eulogized ancient times and pre-capitalist economic life.127 Ch’oe lamented the absence in the immediate past of great Korean writers and scientists to equal Byron and Darwin; instead, he  124 Cho Yŏnsun (2003) 1-39. 125 “Late Colonial Modernism and the Desire for Renewal”, Andre Schmid ed., Korea Under Japanese Colonialism (forthcoming). 126 Ch’oe Kisuk (2006) 228. 127 This, according to Osborne, is one definition of the experience of modernity. (Poole, unpublished article)  60 harked back to the much more distant yet glorious past (the intellectual Yi Yulgok [1536-1584] was a particular favorite of his); although, as Ch’oe Kisuk points out, a poem that Ch’oe Namsŏn attributes to Yulgok as an example of the excellence of the past was not written by Yi but by a Chosŏn dynasty poet by the name of Yang Saŏn	 (楊士彦, 1517- 1584).128 Yi Kwangsu voiced a similar opinion: in an essay in Sonyŏn, Yi deplored the fact that today’s sonyŏn have no leaders, no teachers and no schools and must therefore lead and educate themselves.129  Two Korean scholars that have written about Sonyŏn (Ch’oe Kisuk 2006; Kwŏn Podŭrae 2007) both argue that the magazine was not politically explicit. They claim that it intended, rather, to influence its readers’ moral or ethical interior subjectivity in order to effect a change in their identity (Ch’oe Kisuk); or that the magazine made a concerted effort to be entertaining (Kwŏn Podŭrae 2007). However, the photo of Itō Hirobumi and the Korean Crown Prince that appear on the very first page of the magazine speaks a message that goes beyond inspiring “modernity” or creating a culture of pastime and play. The young prince in the photograph stands in a pose that mimics that of Itō Hirobumi (figure 23). This photo demonstrates an unequivocal message of encouragement to Korea’s youth to follow in Japan’s footsteps toward modernity and sophistication. The young man in the photograph, while embodying the essence of the modern citizen through his clothes and pose,130 is also undeniably a colonial subject.  Other random icons such as figure 24, which appeared throughout Sonyŏn without any connection to any text in particular, bear witness to the relevance of the term “colonial modernity” indicated by the photograph in figure 23. Figure 24 shows what appears to  128 See the footnote in Ch’oe Kisuk (2006) 222. 129 (1910) 3.6, 27-28. 130 For a discussion of modernity and the shift in fashion, see Susie Kim, “What (not) to Wear” (2007).  61 be a Japanese soldier, his whipping hand held high; the soldier’s commanding pose is enhanced by the tightly reigned-in image of the large but controlled horse. This icon reminds the viewer, almost subconsciously because of its random appearance throughout the magazine, of the political context in which “modernity” in Korea had taken place.  Figure 24 Horse and Rider The term colonial modernity is useful in connection with this photograph because it reminds us, first of all, of the complex conditions under which modernity was constructed in Korea; namely processes “that developed in tandem with outside and political influence, and ultimately evolved in a context of colonial domination.”131  What needs to be emphasized is the degree to which Koreans “participated directly and indirectly in the construction of a unique colonial modernity” which “cannot be broken into discrete Japanese, Western, or Korean parts.”132 Sonyŏn was a useful tool for those colonial authorities and colonial subjects who were intent on disseminating ideas that “served to normalize the colonial status quo” by indirectly legitimizing “the colonial rule by associating colonial social and political relations with participation in the modern world.”133  At the same time, Sonyŏn helped to produce counter-hegemonic discourses through a recovery of history and explorations of a unique literary poetic voice. As Sonyŏn and the children’s magazines that followed in its wake demonstrate, “modernity can both assist and  131 Colonial Modernity in Korea, 10. 132 Colonial Modernity in Korea, 11-12. 133 Colonial Modernity in Korea, 12.  62 endanger a prevailing hegemony.”134 The very first magazine purportedly addressed to young readers, Sonyŏn responded in its content to a perceived need in the youth of Korea. Through text, photography and illustrations, Sonyŏn sought to enlighten youth and inspire them to imagine their crucial role in guiding Chosŏn Korea into a modern age. What the magazine did not provide was any insights into the interiority of young readers, or any indication that these readers might be a diverse group, defined along the lines of socio-economic class or gender. Some of these insights would have to wait until the next decade, for the influence of the youth movements inspired by Ch’ŏndogyo and by the work of Pang Chŏnghwan and his magazine Ŏrini in starting in 1923.  134 Colonial Modernity in Korea, 12.  63 3 Ŏrini and the Myth of Innocence 3.1 Education and Colonial Policies Formal annexation of the Korean peninsula brought its social institutions under the control of its Japanese colonizers. Education, print culture, broadcasting, and an array of public and private institutions became the targets of Japanese censorship to varying degrees as the colonial government struggled with ways in which to define its colony and position it within the Japanese empire. The struggle took place not only amongst the Japanese, of course. Mark Caprio explains that, while the Korean patriotic resistance was substantial, there were groups that included “Japan’s Korean supporters and Koreans who favored gradual self-strengthening reforms”. These groups believed Korea was unprepared to accept national sovereignty, and many believed that Japan’s modernizing experiences could prove useful.135 At the outset, Japan deliberated over the speed with which to implement its assimilation policies which would develop Korean potential toward the ultimate goal of raising it to a position of equality with Japan. Until the March First Uprising of 1919, in which Koreans demonstrated over a period of a few months against discriminatory policies, the Japanese assimilation policies were guided by a cautious warning that assimilation need not be rushed because Korea was, in many ways, not yet ready.136  The images that circulated in Japan reinforced the rhetoric of Korea as antiquated and trapped in the past. The way to bridge this gap was going to be through education.137  135 Caprio 18. 136 Caprio notes that Koreans “would first have to demonstrate their ability to rise to Japanese standards before they could be accepted into their inner circle” (85). 137 Caprio, 81-92.  64 Japan’s own path toward institutionalizing education began most notably in the mid-nineteenth century; by the mid to late Meiji period (1868-1912) the Japanese state was deeply invested in the schooling of its children because it recognized their national potential. Schooling came to be conceived of as a technique of social management. Platt notes that, the modern state’s interest in childhood derived in part from its need to mobilize individuals to participate actively in the life of the nation, which led to an interest in schooling—and, in turn, to a careful consideration of the abilities and inclinations of children who attended schools.138  Itō Hirobumi (1841-1909), the chief framer of Japan’s 1889 constitution and Korea’s first Governor-General, explained the importance of education in Japan in 1869, saying that “Now is our millennial opportunity to reform the bad old habits that have been followed in our Imperial Land for centuries, and to open up the eyes and ears of the people of our realm.”139 And Kathleen Uno (1999) explains that the rise of day-care centers as well as the reconstruction of womanhood and childhood in modern Japan were linked to a long-term, deep-seated, and at times almost desperate drive for national progress… national salvation depended on socialization of ordinary Japanese children and the re-socialization of ordinary Japanese adults to a new national orientation.140 It is clear, then, that the model that the Japanese had built for themselves was going to influence the model carried over into their Korean colony.141 Japan’s educational policies were carried over to Korea as early as 1905, since Japanese educational policies began to be enforced in the peninsula from at least the beginning of the protectorate in 1905. By then “a country-wide movement of ‘education for the nation’ was  138 Platt 969. 139 Quoted in Platt 972. 140 Passages to Modernity 8. 141 On the assimilation of the Taiwanese colony, see Leo Ching (2001).  65 underway”;142 this movement was also exploited by the private Korean educational institutions that took advantage of schooling to disseminate nationalistic rhetoric. In any case, arguments in support of education in Korea insisted, for example, on the critical importance of educating women so that they, in turn, would educate their children properly. As Caprio notes, an editorial from the Maeil Sinbo newspaper from 22 September 1910, stressed the critical importance of education in the formation of fundamental morality, but added that this education must begin at home: “if the mother is educated, she can pass on correct knowledge to her children; if she is uneducated, she will recycle to them superstitions of the past.”143 As in Japan, educational institutions were to eradicate outdated knowledge and superstition. In practice, however, Caprio notes that the curriculum of the colonial education system in Korea, as it emerged in 1911 with the First Education Ordinance, focused first on moral education and only later on practical education, reflecting its emphasis on “the creation of the loyal subject before the prolific student.”144 Included in the elementary school curriculum were, for example, one hour a week of ethics (which, in effect, stressed thriftiness and positive attitude for the purpose of promoting the Japanese spirit). Caprio concludes that the establishment of education in the early period of colonization was marked by an absence of the ‘no child left behind’ urgency that came only in the late 1930s. It was then that literacy and education were emphasized for the purpose of expediting the militarization of Korean youth in the Japanese army.145  142 Caprio 294-6. 143 Caprio 97. 144 Caprio 98. 145 Caprio 100.  66 The March First Uprising in 1919 alerted the Japanese to the fact that their attitude of complacency had failed, and that more was needed in order to make their assimilation policies a success.146  As Caprio points out, the most profound change that followed the March First demonstrations was the change of attitude: “the idea that over time the Korean people would naturally assimilate was replaced by the idea that the Japanese had to work to guide Koreans to this goal” and that “exposing them to culture—even their own—would develop within them the sophistication required to evaluate their culture against that of the Japanese.”147 The changes in assimilation policy which were then reflected in education are attributed, according to Caprio, in a great part to Hara Takeshi, the prime minister of Japan from 1918-1921. Hara supported assimilation, and was also critical of the discriminatory policies that had prevented Korea from assimilating fully. He cautioned that “assimilation would succeed only if the Japanese afforded the Koreans equal education opportunities,”148 and attacked the specific practices that had worked to maintain Koreans’ inferior education. Hara placed Saitō Makoto in the seat of Governer-General, and Saitō, in return, circulated a new cultural policy that included the spread of education in five fundamental goals, which were seen as prerequisites for the integration of Koreans into Japan as equals.149  146 Tsurumi notes that “as the best scholarship on Japanese rule has repeatedly pointed out, Japanese efforts at assimilation through education in Korea played a central role in the formation of a modern Korean nationalist consciousness which was bitterly anti-Japanese.” (302) 147 Caprio 112. Tsurumi writes that while the earlier educational policy had attempted to prevent Koreans from studying their own past because of the potential outcomes from heightened nationalism, the new attitude supported their learning since “not being allowed to find out the truth, Koreans had erroneously come to suppose that their country possessed a great and glorious past.” (303). 148 Caprio 124. 149 Caprio 125-6.  67 Above all, Koreans’ “cultural advancement” became the central goal of the Japanese ruling administration, and this advancement was to be achieved through a number of channels, including the improvement of transportation networks and the permission to publish several newspapers.150 The number of elementary schools and student numbers increased, and the Japanese Government-General also made promises to improve education across the board.151 Yet even though a concerted effort was made to increase the numbers of students and schools, in reality the “integrated” education model fell short of the ideal. History textbooks distorted Korean history and glorified children’s sacrifices for the Japanese Emperor.152 While textbooks were supposed to include more Korean cultural content, what they did was perpetuate negative images that separated Koreans from Japanese.153 And, generally speaking, the educational system sought mainly to inculcate “moral character and general knowledge” in the young generation and to cultivate national spirit to make Koreans loyal subjects of imperial Japan.154 While educational content in the public schools was presumably directed by strict guidelines toward the cultivation of colonial subjects, commercial publications and literary activity, including writing for children, were supervised by strict Japanese censorship. Magazines for children were published throughout the colonial period; how much freedom the contributing writers and illustrators had, and in what way the content of their writing differed from the “educational” content taught in schools, are questions that will be dealt with in the next section. In order to explore these questions, it is necessary to consider briefly the Japanese  150 Caprio 127. Among these were the Chosŏn Ilbo and the Tonga Ilbo. 151 Caprio 128-30. 152 Yi Pyŏngdam (2005) 409. 153 Caprio 130-134. See also Yi Pyŏngdam (2006) 446. 154 Theodor Yoo 61.  68 censorship institution, and then to examine the popularity of magazines within the larger context of the growth of print culture in colonial Korea. 3.1.1 Censorship One of the ways to contextualize the significance of children’s magazines is through a consideration of censorship in the colonial period. Rachael Hutchinson defines censorship as “an act of suppression, deletion, omission or revision, performed upon an artistic work or medium by the artist or an external body, that limits the work’s publication or dissemination to some extent.”155 Recent studies on the Japanese censorship in Korea show that one cannot think of the censorship apparatus as monolithic, nor as airtight and absolute; the system itself was deeply nuanced by shifts in political realities and by the informal networks of Japanese and Korean censors and writers.156 In any case, the children’s magazines published during the colonial period—including Ŏrini, Pyŏllara, Sonyŏn and Sinsonyŏn—were published and circulated between the years 1923 and 1940 under Japanese colonial control. Michael Robinson argues that “control of the written word… was used to limit the spread of radical ideas within the empire and to curb criticism of Japanese colonial administration.”157 Robinson defines Japanese censorship of publications as “flexible,” particularly after the March First Uprising and under Governor-General Saito. As part of the effort to use manipulation techniques rather than brute force, the Japanese censorship allowed for more moderate voices while repressing (censoring) the radically anti-Japanese elements in publications. Robinson explains that one of the reasons that children’s magazines (and by this, one presumes that he is  155 “Censorship in the Japanese Arts” 269. 156 See Yi Kihyŏng (2007) and Chŏng Kŭnsik (2005).  69 talking about Ch’oe Namsŏn’s magazines for school children) flourished between 1910 and 1919 is because the Japanese were more lenient with magazines in general (perceiving them to deal “with more specialized matters” and to be of limited circulation), and with youth magazines in particular (which, as Robinson points out, rarely limited their content to their “specialties”).158 Nona Carter writes that, To a large extent, the top-heavy, state controlled interpretation is appropriate to the study of children in any historical time period. In the study of juvenile literature we can see this clearly by the fact that it is always written by adults, and it is subject to the politics of the times in a much more subtle, and arguably more manipulative, way than is adult literature.159 Censorship in Korea existed not only in the form of external pressure that shaped the content of children’s magazines but also internally, by the very virtue of the fact that adults writing for children were making both conscious and unconscious decisions about what to omit. Their decisions were shaped not only by external pressures (which curbed, for example, passionate anti-Japanese or nationalistic expressions), but also internal ones that forced writers to edit themselves even before their work arrived at the censor’s desk. 3.1.2 Print Culture Despite the limitations on publication by censorship imposed both externally and internally, the 1920s brought a transformation in the production and reception of literature. The March First Uprising of 1919, in which an estimated two million Koreans took to the streets to demonstrate against repressive colonial policies for a period of several months, resulted in an official count  157 Robinson 312. Hutchinson notes that Japan itself has a history of censorship, and that “despite the many changes in rule… it is clear from a brief chronological overview that top-down censorship regulations are continuously balanced by systems of negotiation.” (271) 158 Robinson 312-7. 159 Carter 21.  70 of 7,509 dead, 15,961 wounded and 46,948 jailed160; but this event also signaled the substantial emergence of national solidarity and a wide recognition of the power of the masses (taejung). It was following this event in the decade of the 1920s that young people—mostly educated in Japan—took up reading and writing as a way of participating in the new culture of books, magazines, radio broadcasting and film. Youth (ch’ŏngnyŏn) and students took reading out of the hands of the elite and became the principle agents of reception and production of popular culture. And as more books were being produced starting in 1920, readers were faced with more choices.161 According to Ch’ŏn Chŏnghwan, records published by the Japanese Governor-General indicate that in the 1920s, children’s reading materials—including magazines, songs (tongyo), stories and fairy tales (tonghwa) and general reading material (adong tongmul)—were equal to the numbers of new fiction publications (sinsosŏl). Newspapers of this period also remark on this exponential growth in children’s materials (Chosŏn ilbo 1928.10.9-10; 1933.09.12).162 And none demonstrates the popularity of children’s publication better than Pang Chŏnghwan’s acclaimed and best-selling translated folk tale collection, Sarang ŭi sŏnmul [Gift of Love], which was published in 1922 and sold almost 20,000 copies.163  The explosion of reading materials for young people was a result of several factors. First, as shown in the previous chapter, young people had already been singled out starting in 1908 by Ch’oe Namsŏn for the critical role they needed to play in creating sindaehan, the New and Great Korea. The spotlight on this young generation grew brighter as students came back  160 Ch’ŏn Chŏnghwan (2004) 46. 161 Ch’ŏn (2003) also claims that the proliferation of reading materials also resulted in a great many choices which also led to a general devaluation of the written word (296-8). 162 Ch’ŏn Chŏnghwan (2003) 303. 163 Ch’ŏn Chŏnghwan (2003) 306.  71 from Japan, their return bringing with them also an increase in literacy rates (rates which were also growing slowly with wider establishment of schools). Simultaneously, this momentum created by Ch’oe Namsŏn was supported by perhaps the most famous advocate of literature in the 1920s: Yi Kwangsu. Yi’s immensely popular novel Mujŏng [The Heartless] was published in 1917-1918; Yi became one of the mentors of the upcoming literary generation born in the 1900s and grew to become the iconic literary figure of the colonial period.164 In September of 1918, riding on a wave of popularity, Yi published “On Child-Centralism” 子女中心論 in Ch’oe Namsŏn’s youth magazine Ch’ŏngch’un.165 In this essay, Yi explains that reverence for parents and ancestors (in the form of complex rituals and filial piety) is the source of both material and spiritual decline, and has gotten in the way of true individual freedom. It is parents’ duty, he says, to raise their children to be independent (he objects the bequeathing of inheritance, for exhample). Children must be educated not according to parents’ whims and for parents’ personal benefit, but in a way that will allow children to fulfill themselves. Parents must sacrifice themselves for their children and for the future generations, and not the other way around, as had been the custom from times past. If needed, they must be ready to boil their own bones to feed their children. Youth, he insists, should see themselves as being “without ancestors and without parents; as such we should identify ourselves, at this very day and hour, on heaven and on this earth, as the descendants of a new species.”166 Yi sought to guide the new  164 See Michael Shin (1999). 165 The magazine was published by Ch’oe Namsŏn between 1914-1918, and was aimed at young adults and students (as evidenced by its discussion of the examinations and other academic concerns). Kwŏn Podŭrae notes that its appearance at a time of more intense censorship was almost miraculous, particularly for the critical stance it took on current events (2007, 14). 166 “우리는 先祖도 업는사람, 父母도 업는 사람(엇던 意味로는)으로 今日今時에 天上으로서 五土에 降臨한 新種族으로 自處하여야한다. Ch’ŏngch’un 1918.9 (Vol 15)  72 generation—one which looked down with disdain upon the past in its restrictions and outdated practices—into a new literary group, the literary youth (munhak ch’ŏngnyŏn).167 Yi Kwangsu’s work—both his critical essays published in magazines such as Ch’ŏngch’un and his short stories published in Ŏrini and the newspaper Tonga Ilbo—attest to his obsession with the parental role and the struggle that he believed youth faced in escaping the entrenched roles dictated by old customs. As Kim Sŏng’yŏn explains, however, Yi’s insistence on the absolute power of parents and the need for children to escape these bonds does, in a sense, create the sense that there are no grey areas and no possibilities for compromise.168 Kim claims that in his fiction, Yi’s child characters are mostly props that are overwhelmed by their domineering parents.169 While these fictional caricatures support Yi Kwangsu’s argument that Koreans must reject their “fathers” and adopt new role models, their two-dimensionality raises question about whether Yi Kwangsu’s credit for pioneering of modern fiction through the “discovery” of interiority is well deserved.170 Wǒn (2008) argues that Ch’oe Namsŏn and his various magazines must not be considered as the starting point of literature for children. Ch’oe’s works for children demonstrate that he did not, in fact, differentiate between adult or child readers, and that he was interested more in imparting information relating to ‘modern knowledge’ than in addressing a new kind of child audience. Wǒn claims that when the words tonghwa (children’s stories) and tong’yo (children’s  9-17. Yi expressed similar views in other essays in Ch’ŏngch’un such as in the essays “Sonyŏn ŭi piae” [The Grief of children] (1917.5), “Ŏrin pŏt ege” [To our young friends] (1917.5-1917.11), and “Ch’ŏnjae” [Genius] Sonyŏn 1910.6. 167 Ch’ŏn Chŏhwan (2004) 44. 168 Kim Sŏng’yŏn 4. 169 Kim Sŏng’yŏn 13. 170 See Michael Shin, “Interior Landscapes: Yi Kwangsu's ‘The Heartless’ and the Origins of Modern Literature.”  73 songs) appear for the first time in Ch’oe’s work, they did not indicate the same kind of literature that is considered children’s literature today.171 Wǒn acknowledges that Ch’oe’s magazines included an element of entertainment, something which was a significant departure from the purely didactic works for young readers and which was crucial to the development of children’s literature in the contemporary sense. Ch’oe’s magazine was also aimed at a broader group of readers that included both pre-adolescents (yusonyǒn) and young adults (ch’ǒngnyǒn). However, Wǒn ultimately concludes that the decisive reason that Ch’oe’s oevre cannot be considered children’s literature in the contemporary sense is that it was not supported by social movements supporting children’s rights. During Ch’oe’s time, says Wǒn, younger children hardly attended school, and literacy rates were extremely low. Wǒn credits Ch’oe Namsǒn’s explorations of language (for example through his poem “From the Sea to the Boy”), and he credits Yi Kwangsu’s interest and involvement in writing for young readers for raising the bar with regard to writing for children. But Wǒn concludes that the magazines in the 1910s championed (and almost exclusively written) by Ch’oe Namsǒn and Yi Kwangsu were merely sites for the two men to experiment with their modern techniques of fiction and poetry, and were not places where the writers developed literature for children.172 While this is true, I don’t believe these are grounds for excluding a discussion of Ch’oe Namsǒn’s magazine Sonyǒn from a discussion about the trajectory of children’s literature in general. Regardless of what Ch’oe actually achieved—that a real “child” was missing from the kind of child that he constructed—the significance of the role that this magazine played in mapping out a space for a young child reader cannot be underestimated.  171 Wǒn Chongch’an, “Han’guk adong munhak hyŏngsŏng kwajŏng yŏn’gu” (79-80). 172 Wǒn (2008) 86.  74 Judging from the proliferation of magazines and popular culture after the March First Uprising of 1919, it seems appropriate to say that youth culture thrived in the 1920s during what Ch’on Chŏnghwan called the “decade of youth” (ch’ŏngnyŏn ŭi sidae).173 But what stood behind the thriving youth culture lies beyond the territory staked out by two literary giants, Ch’oe Namsǒn and Yi Kwangsu. Youth culture thrived not only thanks to Ch’oe’s cultivation of young readers’ literacy, and Yi’s insistence that the new generation turn its back on the past.174 Just as significant in the 1920s was the influence of the indigenous religion of Ch’ŏndogyo and its associated youth movements (ch’ŏngnyŏn undonghoe). By the mid-20s, the rise of socialism and proletarian culture also played a critical role in the flourishing of youth culture. In the early 1920s, a different child was being constructed: the ŏrini, whose perceived physical and spiritual constitution and role in society demanded a very different kind of writing.  3.2 Watershed (?) Scholars in the field of children’s and youth culture (Wǒn Chongch’an 2008; Cho Ŭnsuk 2009; Yi Kihun 2002) point to the 1920s as the watershed year that marked the birth of literature for children in Korea. And in the early 1920s, the epithet ŏrini (child) began to circulate widely, both in the press and in magazines, and replaced, or at least, for a time, competed with, the term sonyŏn that had been established by Ch’oe Namsŏn and Yi Kwangsu. While the sonyŏn of the pre-1920s were “unrelenting fighters with hands like spears who move like steamships”,175 the ŏrini of the 1920s were easily manipulated and incorporated into colonial society by another  173 Ch’ŏn Chŏnghwan (2004) 44. 174 See Yi Kwangsu, “kŭlgwa kŭl chitnŭn kich’o yŏkŏn” [Writing and its basic fundamentals], in Haktŭng 1935.7; quoted in Ch’ŏn Chŏnghwan (2003) 298-9. 175 Taehan maeil sinbo 1908.8.7, quoted in Cho Ŭnsuk (2009) 96.  75 literary writer and publisher that became central to the formation of children’s literature: Pang Chŏnghwan (1899-1931). Under Pang’s orchestration, the spears and steamships associated with the modern sonyŏn were replaced by flowers and birds. And until the rise of socialism and competing visions of the working or dispossessed child, the constructed ŏrini-child enjoyed a relatively stable existence as the epitome of purity, the symbol of progress, and the ideal archetype of humanity. Like the sonyŏn, the ŏrini were privileged because of their potential to move the country forward. As Cho Chaeho states in the essay “Ŏrinide-sŏnmul” [A gift for Children’s Day], ŏrini are “the main actors” of the world who, with their sturdy spirits, beautiful souls, and cheerful, hardworking minds are always ‘new’ and therefore must rise above their mothers, fathers or teachers.176  When the term ŏrini first arose, it was itself not commonly used.177 To be sure, literacy rates were still extremely low (numbers climbed from 4.4% in 1920 to 17.4% in 1929),178 not to mention that most children who lived in the countryside could not dream of an education, much less hope to receive any “privileged” treatment.179 The term itself was unstable in the sense that it did not represent a clearly defined group. From 1925 (3.3), the magazine Ŏrini solicited and included photos of readers to the magazine; but as the photos show, the readers are mostly in their late teens, averaging around 17 years of age. In one famous incident, Pang, the founder and  176 어린이 라고 하는말은 그뜻이 이세계의장래 주인공이라는말이다—그럼으로 우 리 어린이들은 씩씩한 긔상과 고-흔 心정과 쾌활하고도 부즈러한마음을 항상 새 롭게하야 이세게의지금 現在 주인공이신 아버님 어머님 先生님보담 더 나은사람 이되여야하겟다.” Ŏrini 3.5 2-3. 177 Yi Kihun (2002) 13. 178 O Sŏngch’ŏl 133-150. 179 In “普通學校를 맛추고 무엇을 할까?” Kim Namju addresses the issue of children working on farmland in the countryside and not being able to take advantage of schooling. Ŏrini 5.4, 10-14.  76 editor of Ŏrini, greeted a reader with affectionate and somewhat patronizing language only to discover that the reader was, in fact, a teenager and much older than Pang expected.180 Nonetheless, the term ŏrini began to circulate thanks to several developments: the slow but steady rise in literacy; the frequency of appearance of the word in newspapers alongside reports on child-related activities, organizations, and even creative pieces; the activities of the youth groups; the initiation of Children’s Day, or ŏrininal; and the steady marketing of children’s magazines.181  Of all these, however, the factor that played the most decisive role in the rise of the term ŏrini and its establishment was the role played by the social groups affiliated with the indigenous religion of Ch’ŏndogyo. Previously known as Tonghak, this organization stopped calling itself a ‘learning’ and became a ‘teaching’ or ‘religion’ (kyo) in the first decade of the twentieth century. Education was one of the legitimate enterprises a religion was sanctioned to pursue under the colonial authorities, and it is thanks to its effect on reforming the minds as well as the physical habits of the people that Ch’ŏndogyo was able to attain prominence in colonial Korean society.182 Pang Chŏnghwan, who was the son-in-law of Son Pyŏnghŭi, leader of Ch’ŏndogyo and an important figure in the Korean independence movement, also established Children’s Day in Korea in 1923, and edited the magazines Ŏrini, Sin yǒsǒng and Kaebyŏk. Other contributors to the magazine Ŏrini included Kim Kich’ŏn (1894-?), the ideologue and one of the leading figures of Ch’ŏndogyo. The youth movements of Ch’ŏndogyo not only created the physical space in which children (now called ŏrini) could meet and share ideas, but they also  180 Yi Kihun (2002) 16. 181 Yi Kihun (2002) 19-20. 182 I am indebted to Kenneth Koo for supplying me with this explanation.  77 gave storytelling and story/folk tale tonghwa writing a position of central importance as the embodiment of joy and happiness that was at the core of every ŏrini’s heart.183 3.3 Youth Groups and Magazines Youth groups did not, in fact, emerge in the 1920s but a decade earlier. YMCA groups were first established in Japan in 1880, and then in China and Korea in 1903. In Korea, the term ch’ŏngnyŏn was first used in 1897, and the term (and groups) quickly spread after 1907 as a part of the momentum of the discourse of enlightenment.184 In this period, youth groups—including such groups as the sonyŏn undonghoe, ch’ŏngnyŏnhoe and chosŏn sonyŏn yŏnhaphoe—were of central importance not only because they provided the opportunity for children to gather and play, but also because they took an active interest in the fiction and poetry that was being written for children. Yi Kihun (2004b) draws our attention to the driving force behind many of the youth groups, which grew exponentially from 1920 to 1922.185 Many of the leaders behind this group had studied in Japan, where they had begun to come to terms with the formation of a “youth” identity (seinen in Japan, ch’ŏngnyŏn in Korea). While in Japan the seinen were mobilized as rational, practical and stable elements in society, however, the Korean ch’ŏngnyŏn were devoted to politicizing culture and creating change.186  The youth group organizations in the 1920s had a deep connection with the material that was being printed for children in the various magazines in this period. Poetry published in Ŏrini was often recited at such meetings; accompaniment was written for the songs, stories were turned into plays, and members of the youth groups engaged with the content of the fiction and  183 Yi Kihun (2002) 30. 184 Yi Kihun (2004a) 289. 185 Yi Kihun (2004b) 217-8. Yi notes that by 1922 there were over two thousand registered youth groups.  78 poetry found in the pages of Ŏrini as a part of the debate regarding youth culture.187 The readers of Ŏrini were both active participants in the youth organizations and loyal viewers of the plays and performances put on by the magazines. The organizations and their branches, spread throughout the country, served both as wide distributors of children’s magazines and also helped organize Children’s Day celebrations. It was the enthusiastic support of the youth organizations and the cooperation between them and the children’s magazines that provided the impetus for growth and development of reading materials for children in the 1920s in a way that had been impossible a decade earlier.188  The magazines of the 1920s also provided a shared space for children who, for the first time in Korean history, could read the same materials as other children from all over the country.  The children’s magazines from the 1920s such as Ŏrini actively drew out their readers by encouraging ‘fan meetings.’ For example, Ŏrini encouraged its readers to send in photos, and within two years of the first publication of Ŏrini, the magazine’s popularity was reflected in the number of photographs submitted and published.189 In addition, the magazine urged its young readers to send in their own creative writing pieces, and started featuring works  186 Yi Kihun (2004b) 221. 187 Cho Ŭnsuk 168-9. 188 Cho Ŭnsuk 174-8. Kim Hwasŏn notes that the number of books published for children in the 1920s competed with the number of sinsosŏl [new fiction] (2007a, 334). Cho Ŭnsuk says that in the 1920s, 40 new publications were introduced into the market, as opposed to only five publications in the 1910s. This reflects not only abundant activity in the publishing industry but the fact that society was now increasingly interested in consuming children’s print culture. (162) 189 It is unlikely that families owned cameras in the 1920s, and therefore one assumes that these photographs were taken in studios and sent in to the magazine. Thanks to Sharalyn Orbaugh for pointing out that this practice was not common in Japanese magazines of the same genre.  79 by children. Thus, Ŏrini professed to provide the “poor boys and girl of Chosŏn” an opportunity to connect, and a space in which sympathy (tongjŏng) could be explored.190 Another interesting role that this magazine played in the process of the facilitation of communication between readers was the consolidation between children of similar age groups across the peninsula and abroad. Cho gives an example of one reader, a high-school Korean boy studying in Japan who, soon after he made an appearance in Ŏrini, was trapped in Tokyo during the great earthquake of 1923. Until he resurfaced his plight was of central concern among young readers who expressed their deeply sympathetic feelings for the boy.191 Another child, a Korean boy born and raised in the Chinese province of Jilin on the border with northern Korea, caught readers’ attention and elicited their sympathies in 1924 for never having set foot in his homeland. His plight was responded to in “letters to the editor” that reflected the degree to which children found Ŏrini to be an empowering space in which children could participate and voice their concerns: The news published in volume five that Yi Sŏngt’ae is crying in Jilim brought me to tears. I will pray in earnest to Hanullim192 so that he will recover from his illness quickly and  190 Cho Ŭnsuk 186-9. Cho notes that the term tongjŏng, or sympathy, gained currency as a part of the discourse on modernity in Korean literature. Yi Kwangsu published an essay titled “Tongjŏng” [sympathy] in Ch’ŏngch’un; there, he elaborated on the significance of the importance of this emotion in literature. Tongjŏng was not only meant to be a feeling of pity that moves us to help others, but a deep understanding of the hardships that people experience, and the ability to extend forgiveness as well. It was something that was not only inherently human, but was a yardstick against which the extent of the development of a society’s culture and education could be measured. Yi suggested that there needed to be a kind of alliance (tongmaeng) of youth (sonyŏn suyang) in which individuals would be cultivated such that their national identity would be reshaped (kaejo) and revived (puhŭng); the development of the emotion sympathy was to play a central role in the overall cultivation of the individual/society. (Ch’ŏngch’un 3, 57-64) 191 Cho Ŭnsuk 189-91. 192 Here “hanullim” signifies God; Baker (2002) claims that Koreans had no indigenous term for God until Protestant Christians began using terms like “Hananim” near the end of the 19th century.  80 come back to Korea…Oh, ye magazines, more precious to us than our lives! If not for you who, what would become of our pathetic selves? Magazines are our lives, our light, and we should advertise your presence far and wide. Let’s pave the way into the future!193  Pang intended for Ŏrini to be widely different from what had been published for children in the previous decade. He sets a completely different tone from Ch’oe Namsŏn’s magazine Sonyŏn. In the opening page in the inaugural volume of Ŏrini, Pang wrote: Like a bird, like a flower, [the child] sings artlessly through young cherry lips, a song that is the sound of nature, is the essence of the sky. Like a pigeon, like a rabbit, [the child] runs, soft hair tousled by the wind, is the embodiment of nature, is the shadow of the sky. Absent is the greed of adults, lacking are scheming desires. Oh, faultless, candid, peaceful and free Land of Hanul194! This is the Land of our Children. We must never, ever pollute this Land of the Sky, and in order for all people of the world to live in this clean Land, we must expand our Land. Ŏrini is composed of all the clean deeds that spring from these two wishes. We believe that when Ŏrini, the product of our earnest passion, will be embraced, there will sprout the seeds of the pristine spirit.195  And in the section titled “Namŭn ink’ŭ” [Leftover ink] published in the first issue of Ŏrini, Pang addresses his readers directly and writes: [Children hear] didactic and self-cultivation pieces in school, so [in Ŏrini] I want us to read fun and playful pieces, and while doing so let us become purer and more kind! It is with these thoughts that I embellish this book.196 The children who actually circulated and read the magazine may have been much older than the group of children Pang envisioned as ŏrini, but the magazine was written in the Korean vernacular script which could be read by anyone with basic literacy skills. The magazine also  193 Ŏrini (1924 2.7), 40. 194 See Baker 2002. 195 Ŏrini (1923) 1, 1. 196 Ŏrini (1923) 1, 12.  81 frequently addressed its young female readers, exhibiting at least a conscious awareness that the magazine was read by both boys and girls. There are even references to use of denigration of females; in the article “少年會	 iyagi” [on the sonyŏnhoe], the instructor/guide gives the inquiring child examples of exploitation, as when adults use derogatory language with children and men use derogatory language with women.197 But in general, the pieces published in the magazine Ŏrini, unlike those published in Ch’oe Namsŏn’s Sonyŏn or Ch’ŏngch’un, did not aspire to be overtly educational. Nor, was the magazine a site for resistance or alternative education; rather, it encouraged a greater understanding of the world and fostered some critical thinking about the social organization of the readers198 while keeping readers engaged and entertained. Note, for example figure 25, a cartoon strip printed in the volume three from 1925. In it, a young boy behaves disrespectfully toward his grandfather. This piece received negative reviews, but the magazine’s editors defended their choice by insisting that this kind of portrayal was an integral part of literature.199  197 “이세상을 가만히 두고 생각해보시오 셩의차별 (性의差別)로는 사내자식들이 녀자사람을 게집년들이라고 내리누루고 빈부의차벌 (貧富의差別)로는 돈가진좀들 이 업는사람을 가난뱅이년석들이라고 맘대로 부려벅고잇슴니다 이와똑가티 년령 의차별 (年齡의差別)로는 어른이란것들이 또한 어린사람을 “요조고만한어린아희 놈들아” 하고 자긔네가 가진힘으로 약한어린이들의 늠늠히 자라감을 맘대로 쥐락 페락하고 잇습니다. Yi Sŏnghwan, “少年會 iyagi” Ŏrini (1925 3.5) 8-11. 198 Yi Kihun 32. Also Cho Ŭnsuk 165-6. 199 Cho Ŭnsuk 166-7.  82  Figure 25 Disrespectful Boy One of the characteristics that marked contemporary children’s literature and differentiated it from the didactic edicts and conduct literature of the past was the degree to which it allowed itself to be entertaining and not just educational. Magazines such as Sonyǒn that appeared in the first decade of the twentieth century emphasized informational content that was meant to enlighten more than to distract. ‘Fun’ (chaemi) was introduced slowly in 1910, and was legitimized as a process of training readers to develop a finer ‘taste.’ Printed matter, such as books and magazines, was responsible for improving readers’ reading skills and refining their sensibilities toward modern hobbies and pastimes.200  As the rest of the chapter will explain, Pang Chŏnghwan’s magazine Ŏrini marked a departure from Ch’oe Namsŏn’s magazine in language and content. In addition, however, as the  83 illustration above (figure 25) indicates, the magazine also reflects an awareness of its young audience, and the way it imagined the needs of this audience, in its illustrations. While there is certainly a continuity in certain aspects of the illustrations—e.g. stern profiles of serious educators, random and formulaic icons—one can find in this magazine, for the first time, a new kind of illustration that indicates the illustrators’ and editors’ awareness of and willingness to respond to a young readership.  Many aspects of Ŏrini’s layout are certainly indebted to the innovations that Ch’oe Namsŏn instituted in his magazine, Sonyŏn. The use of visual representations above the title of a story was a convention used already in Sonyŏn (see figure 10 and figure 11). Ŏrini, too, continued with this convention, with the visual representations serving as extra information: for example, figures 26 and 27 are story headings that convey different information:  200 See the work of Ch’ŏn Chŏnghwan et al. 2006.  84           Figure 26 Stern     Figure 27 Cuckoo  Figure 26 carries the stern profile of presumably the author, Yi Yongsun, in a didactic piece titled “Become sturdy and diligent children!” Yi Yongsun’s eyes do not meet their readers’; instead, his gaze is focused somewhere on a distant horizon, and contributes to the seriousness of the article by indicating that the content is in no way frivolous. In contrast, figure 27 is a heading to a folk tale penned by Pang Chŏnghwan (here using one of his many pseudonyms, Mong Kyŏnch’o). The story is about a cuckoo bird, and it sports an illustration of two innocuous birds which helps set the tone of the story and begs the readers’ suspense of belief. Another heading from the same magazine also plays with fonts (an earlier example of this can also be found in Sonyŏn (figure 5)):  85        Figure 28 Frilly Detective This heading exhibits an experimentation with fonts, but to a greater degree than figure 5: in figure 28, Pang (again using one of his pseudonyms, Puk Kŭksŏng) enhances the story—in this case, a detective story—with an illustration that is slightly off kilter: the two faces on the top of the illustration are looking eagerly in the direction of the text, and the illustrator’s use of fonts and unconventional designs helps pique the readers’ curiosity. Pang’s magazine built on Ch’oe’s innovative use of illustrations and icons to enhance the text and ‘hook’ the readers.  What marks the difference between Pang’s Ŏrini and the magazines that came before it, however, is that its illustrators reflect an awareness of their audience and respond to them with drawings that cannot be found in Ch’oe’s Sonyŏn. Take, for example, figure 29:  86   Figure 29 Baby and Pen  This small icon appeared at the end of each issue of Ŏrini in a section titled “Namŭn ink’ŭ” [Leftover ink], which was a letter from the editor: Pang’s place to address different issues, readers’ letters, etc. The illustration, which features a miniature baby, standing on one leg and on tiptoe while holding an enormous pen, is indicative of a new kind of illustration that younger children might find more enticing (though, ironically, this particular section of each issue was not meant to be read by children, but rather their parents). Other illustrations exhibit a similar awareness of their audience’s tastes:    Figure 30 Fool    Figure 31 Faces   87 Figure 30 is an illustration accompanying a folk tale about a foolish man. The caricature of the fool demonstrates that the illustrator is aware that his audience is, in fact, quite willing and eager to suspend their belief. The fact that the majority of the illustrations are similar to figure 30 seems to indicate a positive response from its readers.  Figure 31, a heading of a letter from Ŏrini’s editor to its “young readers,” demonstrates that these young readers are imagined, as the illustrations would indicate, to be young. The illustrations of Ŏrini clearly reflect an awareness of this young new audience, and the magazine’s language and narrative responded to this awareness as well. 3.4 Language and Narrative  The magazines of the 1920s were an important part of the new consumption and circulation of print culture. Writers and publishers of children’s magazines in the 1920s recognized and embraced the degree to which their magazines could simultaneously be entertaining and yet could also contribute to the discourse on education, language and national identity in the colonial period. As noted in chapter one, in the previous decade Ch’oe Namsŏn used his magazine as a stage from which to inspire the youth of Korea to turn their backs on the past and assume leading roles in steering Korea toward a new era. But as literacy levels slowly started to rise, children’s magazines also began to experiment with language and form, addressing, for example, questions of narrative technique and content, particularly with regard to the documentation and collection of folk stories with an eye toward resistance to Japanese cultural hegemony.201  201 The 1920s witnessed a general surge of interest in things “Chosŏn” and in the search for Chosŏn-ness. See Ku Chaejin et al. 2007.  88 Children’s magazines engaged in the question of language reform, which had been a concern since the turn of the century,202 in particular with regard to reforming the written language in order to eliminate Chinese characters and strengthen the indigenous Korean alphabet.203 Research on magazines published in the decade of the 1910s—on Ch’oe Namsŏn’s magazines such as Aidŭlboi, Pulgŭn chǒgori and Ch’ǒngch’un—reflects the editor’s efforts to incorporate the Korean alphabet.204 Cho explains that magazines experimented with native Korean script and replaced the more commonly used Chinese-character based expressions with an invented Korean lexicon.205 Cho Ŭnsuk judges these efforts harshly, however, claiming that, rather than create a lexicon that was indeed accessible without the need for knowledge of Chinese, the resulting obscurity of expressions created an unnecessary semantic complexity that perpetuated the need for Chinese characters. At the same time, she claims that the editor was not unaware of the complexity and that, on the contrary, the complexity of using Korean vernacular  202 The call for a unity of speech and writing (J. Genbun itchi, K. Ŏnmun ilch’e) had begun in Japan already in the Meiji period, and was addressed by literature scholars in Korea such as Yi Kwangsu. Piel (2010) provides an interesting example of how questions of the unity of speech and writing came into children’s literature in the 1890s in Japan (Piel 216-8). See also Tomasi (1999) and Pak Chinsu (2003). 203 Ross King (1998) contextualizes the debates on language reform in his article, “Nationalism and Language Reform in Korea.” There, King notes that “by default, [the mixed Chinese-Korean kukhanmun script] had always been marginal at best….[it] emerged as the writing style for Korean in the Seoul dialect” (36); and that the discussion over the exclusive use of kungmun in elementary textbooks goes back to 1908, where its use was urged because of its ability to foster national spirit, even though the vernacular orthography wasn’t promulgated until 1933 (38). Elsewhere, King writes that the 1920s and 1930s “witnessed a relative flourishing of research and publication activities in connection with Korean language and writing,” and the first standard orthography was put into place by the Japanese colonial authorities in 1912, and then revised in 1921 and 1930. King (2007) 207. 204 The magazines Aidŭlboi and Pulgŭn chǒgori were not obtainable at the time of writing this dissertation; for this reason, I rely on this section on secondary sources. Ch’ǒngch’un was deemed to be aimed at an audience that could not possibly fall under the “child” category, and was omitted, generally speaking, from this research.  89 instead of the more familiar Chinese-character based expressions was one way of constructing Chosŏn-ness.206 By the 1920s and with the magazine Ŏrini, the struggles that Cho Ŭnsuk finds in the previous decades’ magazines is no longer to be found. Pang commented on orthography in the first volume of Ŏrini, saying: In this third issue, I have used the vernacular script (ŏnmun) more than Chinese (hanmun). I did so with the hopes that there will not be anyone who cannot read this; know, readers, that I will only use the vernacular script, so please suggest this magazine as reading to anyone you like.207  As Cho notes, Pang’s intention is less a passionate commitment to the establishment of vernacular Korean and a means of replacing Chinese characters, than a practical tool: vernacular Korean in Ŏrini, she claims, was simply a means of reaching out to as many readers as possible. The stories and essays included in Ŏrini attest to an experimentation also with narrative techniques. While Ch’oe Namsŏn’s prose pieces consisted mostly of informative essays, the songs and short stories published in the magazine Ŏrini were meant to be experienced not only through the eyes but through the ears as well. Both children’s songs (tongyo) and fiction (tonghwa), were expected to be performed or recited.208 One letter to the editor in Ŏrini from 1923 expresses the great joy and privilege the writer feels at being part of a group reading of the magazine.209 Recitation of stories would have been particularly meaningful in this period, during which literacy was still low. Pang addresses this issue in the first issue of Ŏrini in which  205 Cho Ŭnsuk (2009) 202. Cho gives the example of the term tangi (檀紀) to indicate a period of time, which was, in these magazines, replaced with the vernacular word seum. Other words that got replaced include nallaem instead of yonggi (勇氣) 206 Cho Ŭnsuk (2009) 200-3. 207 Ŏrini 1923.3, 12 208 Cho Ŭnsuk (2009) 213. In the section titled “Ŏrini hoeŭi pam” [Meeting night], it is noted that there will be song and fiction recitations. Ŏrini (1924) 1.2, 3.  90 he urges all his readers to read out loud to the family members so that they can all enjoy it together.210 Narrators in children’s texts of the 1920s were not disengaged or omniscient like the narratives that mark contemporary literature.211 The voice of the narrator often addressed the listeners in an intimate or familiar style or, as in this excerpt, inserted a cough to bring attention to his presence: “A-hem!…I am about to tell you a long story that has no end. Will it end?…. Will it not?… Be quiet and pay attention. A-hem!”212 In the tale “Sŏnmul anin sŏnmul,”213 [The gift that was no gift] the king gives rich man “An” a riddle and challenges him to solve it or be killed; the narrator then tells the reader that his thirteen-year-old daughter managed to solve it, but urges the reader not to rush forward and read the solution, but to “close the book and try and come up with the solution first.” Such narrative techniques conveyed an audial quality that even in reading provides a “listening” experience. But as Cho Ŭnsuk notes, this oral/aural quality (kusulsŏng) was something to be overcome: when “calls for folk tales” were put out in the early 1920s in the (adult) literary journal Kaebyŏk, for example, the editing committee emphasized that it would take care of the ‘copy editing’ as far as the standardization of orthography was concerned as long as the stories were authentic.214 Cho notes that the formal style sentence endings (-(ŭ)mnida/-(ŭ)mnikka) entered the children’s prose first through translations in 1910 of English prose through Japanese, which used similarly formal endings.215  209 “Tokcha tamhwasil”, Ŏrini (1923) 2.10, 46. 210 “Namŭn ink’ŭ”, Ŏrini 1.1 12. 211 Hwang Chonghyŏn 2001. 212 “Skŭdŏmnŭn iyagi” [Never-ending Story] Ŏrini 2.1, 23-26. 213 Ŏrini 2.2, 2-5. 214 Cho Ŭnsuk (2009) 219. 215 Writing about Japan, Wakabayashi (2008) notes that “children’s literature was ahead of other genres in adopting… the new style of writing that attempted to emulate spoken language more closely (and which was therefore more suitable for reading stories aloud to  91 What the stories in the early 1920s exhibit, however, is not so much an effort to capture the oral quality of storytelling as a concerted effort to establish standardized sentence structures.216 The structure that was chosen for all works for children, from folk tales to short stories to longer pieces, was a polite grammatical ending (-ŭmnida) that Cho argues, would have stood out in the 1920s for its formal politeness.217 The polite verb endings in fact reflect the discussions in newspaper media about the use of polite terms with children.218 According to Cho, however, the purpose of this new, standardized and remarkably polite form used in children’s literature was to create a communal experience for young readers that ultimately contributed to the construction of their subjectivity as modern readers.219 It was also a site in which Koreans could engage in active resistance to Japanese, which had been instated as the national language (kokugo) in Korea. It was a site in which linguistic nationalism was constructed, and played a key role in the constructing of the nation.220 3.5 Folk Tales and National Identity Folk tales are central to the discussion of the appearance of children’s literature and the construction of the child in Korea. Korean folk tales were perceived as emblems of national  children)”, and that “this particular work paved the transition to a vernacular style and presented a new approach to translation.” (234) In Japan, she says, “it took a while for writers (and translators) to feel at ease with the written form of the vernacular and to refine it into a style that reflected natural speech but avoided monotony and wordiness.” (240) 216 Cho Ŭnsuk (2009) 220-1. 217 Cho Ŭnsuk (2009) 222. 218 The interest in the educational value of polite language on children is reflected in the public discourse of the time. For example, in the newspaper The Tonga Ilbo, in an article from September 25, 1921, a writer argues that parents must use polite language with their children so that they can internalize the speech patterns. The use of impolite speech with children has the adverse affect of mistreating children, and also perpetuates the situation in which children then go on to mistreat others. 219 Cho Ŭnsuk (2009) 223. 220 Yŏm Hŭigyŏng (2007) 159.  92 identity, and a renewed interest in folk tales was spurred by the sense of urgency for the need to protect and preserve national identity at a time of national crisis. Ch’oe Namsǒn and Pang Chǒnghwan, who, as we have seen, were the two men who stimulated interest in children’s issues through the publication of literary magazines, expanded the repertoire of children’s reading materials through their translations and adaptations of foreign folk tales such as those of Anderson and the Brothers Grimm into Korean.221 The translation of these folk tales demanded considerations of narrative techniques and language that then spilled over into original writing as well.222  As Seth Lerer notes, Fables rely on figurative language. They take parts for wholes, draw on particulars for generalizations, make mute creatures speak. Their status in the nursery or in the classroom rests not simply on their moral or didactic goals, but on their metaphorical enchantment. They are, quite simply, literature at its most simple and direct, and instruction in the fable is a lesson in the arts of the literary imagination.223  Korean scholars also argue that western folk tales played a crucial role in the formation of children’s print culture in Korea. Aesop’s fables were the first to be introduced and circulated to Korean readers at the end of the nineteenth century in a textbook called the Sinjŏng simsang sohak (新訂尋常小學, 1896). The next translation available of the Aesop fables was a piece titled “Isopsŭ uhwa ch’oyŏk” [이솝스 寓話抄譯, Draft Translation of Aesop’s Fables] which was included in a 1907 issue of the Taehan yuhaksaeng hakpo. In 1908, Ch’oe Namsŏn included three translated fables in Sonyŏn; Aesop’s fables were published in their own  221 Interestingly and in comparison, Wakabayashi (2008) claims that translations of foreign children’s literature were also the catalyst for children’s literature in Japan. She notes that while the early translations had distinctly didactic purposes, the “translators domesticated these unfamiliar imports in an attempt to make accommodations for readers’ perceived understanding, rather than as a form of resistance to foreign culture” (227-34). 222 In Japan, too, “translations opened up new vistas in terms of content, language and presentation in a process that continued long after the appearance of the first original works fitting the definition of modern children’s literature.” Wakabayashi 245.  93 publication by Song Sonsŏk and titled Isobo ŭi 空前 格言 [The unprecedented wisdom of Aesop] in 1911; and from 1913-1914 a fable appeared each month in the magazine Sinmungye (新文界).224 In fact, until the Grimm tales appeared in translation in 1922, Aesop’s fables were the only folk tales that were available to young readers besides three Russian tales by Ivan Krylov that were translated and published in Sonyŏn in 1910.225 Although Ch’oe Namsŏn included some tales in his young readers’ magazines from 1912-4, the real interest in folk tales began in the 1920s with Pang Chŏnghwan.226  Pang Chǒnghwan put out a “call for folk tales” on the very last page of issue 26 of Kaebyŏk in 1922.227 In this advertisement, Pang urged readers to consider the critical importance of folk tales at this time. He argued that folk tales contained a people’s true spirit,228 and were a great source of strength: countries such as Germany, England and France had indigenous stories and songs that were unshakable foundations of national identity. Korea, he laments, lacks tales that are on par with the Grimm tales; for too long, Korean children have  223 Lerer (2008) 37. 224 Pak Hyesuk (2005) 177-80. 225 Sonyŏn 4.2 61-64. 226 No doubt Pang was inspired by leading Japanese children’s folktale scholar, Iwaya Sazanami, whose name he adopted for himself. See section 2.5. 227 Kim Ŭnch’ŏn notes that this advertisement was also published in the magazine Puin (17). 228 Scholarship on western folk tales also explores the way in which folk tales are thought to reflect culture and tradition in a manner that transcends their time. Haase notes that fairy tales are “often thought to reach back like sacred works to times past,’ to some ancient, pristine age in which their original tellers spoke mythic words of revelation,” and that “folk tales and fairy tales are endowed by many readers with unassailable moral and even spiritual authenticity.” (353) Maria Tatar also notes that “the reverence brought by some readers to fairy tales mystifies these stories, making them appear to be a source of transcendent spiritual truth and authority.” (Off With Their Heads xii) However, as Jack Zipes observes at the end of his introduction to Fairy Tales and the Art of Subversion, “the fairy tales we have come to revere as classical are not ageless, universal, and beautiful in and of themselves, and they are not the best therapy in the world for children. They are historical prescriptions, internalized,  94 only been familiar with Japanese folk tales, he writes. If this situation were to continue, Korea—and Korean children—would have no future. Pang called on his readers to reach out to each region in Korea and collect those stories passed down from the Chosŏn dynasty.229  The response to this ‘call for folk tales’ came in the form of 150 stories from all over Korea, and even from China and Japan.230 Four months later, Pang published an article titled “Saero kaech’ŏktoenŭn tonghwa e kwanhayŏ” [On Developing new Folk Tales]. In it, Pang bemoaned the fact that there are so few originally Korean folk tale collections, in contrast with translated foreign folk tales that could be found. While this was regrettable, Pang said, it was not unfortunate because all literatures endure a period of “importation”, and also because translations actually help expand a nation’s repertoire. But Pang argued that the most important and urgent task was that of unearthing Korea’s old folk tales. Pang thanks his readers for their submissions, and turns particularly to the young people in Korea (ch’ŏngnyŏn), and stresses the importance of collecting stories from all over the country and submitting them to the newspaper for publication. Finally, Pang notes that famous stories that Japan has presented as originally Japanese but translated into European languages are, in fact, originally from Korea (or, as Pang says, perhaps Indian in origin). Other stories, too, seem to exist in variations in Europe and Japan, but—Pang asserts—their origins are most definitely Korean.231 Pang’s opinion of the ideological potential was reflected in folk tales published in his magazine; for example, in one folk tale, the narrative voice turns directly to the reader to insist that Korean stories have much more to offer than the popular translated ones:  potent, explosive, and we acknowledge the power they hold over our lives by mystifying them.” (11) 229 “Chosŏn ŭi korae tonghwa sujip” Kaebyŏk 26 (1922) 8.1. 230 Pak Hyesuk (2005) 185. 231 Kaebyŏk 31 (1.1) of 1923, 18-25.  95 Now children, who kind of stories do you like? Do you like foreign stories or Korean ones? It appears as if you prefer foreign ones, to be honest…this is not a bad thing, but you should know that our own stories are much more fantastic and amusing. If you read them you’ll find out that the stories of old Chosŏn are so compelling that you won’t be able to eat, pee, or swallow; you’ll be dancing around light footed like a little bird.232  3.5.1 School textbooks and the Chōsen dōwashū, 1924 Despite Pang Chǒnghwan’s impassioned appeal, and despite the popularity of his first collection of translated folk tales, Sarang ŭi sŏnmul [Gift of Love, 1922], Korean scholars regret that the very first publication of Korean folk tales came not from Korea but from Japan. The Chōsen dōwashū [Collection of Chosǒn Folktales] was published by the Japanese colonial government in 1924.233 The collection includes 25 folktales that were translated from Korean into Japanese.234 There was no introduction, no afterword and no mention of any translator.235 The collection, which was a part of a series on Korean culture published in Japanese,236 was preceded by two other works of a similar nature: the 朝鮮の謎	 [The Mysteries of Chosǒn], and  232 Pak Talsŏng Ŏrini (1924.6) 27. 233 The other significant Korean collections published in the colonial period were Chosŏn tonghwa taejip [Grand collection of Chosǒn tales] written by Sim Ŭirin (沈宜麟) and published by Hansŏng Tosŏ in 1926, Uri Tongmu [Our friend] published by Yuhyang Sŏok and edited by Han Ch’ung in 1927; and Chosŏn chŏllae tonghwajip [Chosǒn Folk Tale collection] by Pak Yŏngman (朴英晩) and published by Hagyesa in 1940. 234 Kwŏn Hyŏngnae (2009) 153-4. 235 Kwŏn Hyŏngnae (2009) concludes that the main editor of the volume must have been Ota Shōgo (小田 省吾), who played a significant role in the publication of textbooks in colonial Korea. (156-7). 236 These include: 朝鮮圖書解題 [Chōsen tosho kaidai, An analysis of Korean Books 1915), 金剛山植物調査書 [Kongōzan shokubutsu chosashō, Survey of Mount Kumgang Plants 1918], 朝鮮金石總攬 [Chōsen kinseki sōran, Korean geological Survey 1919], 朝鮮 の謎 [Chōsen no nazo, Mysteries of Korea 1919], 朝鮮語辭典 [Chōsengo jiten, Korean dictionary 1920] and 朝鮮植物名彙 [Chōsen shokubutsu meii, An enumeration of plants in Korea 1922].  Kwŏn Hyŏngnae (2009)  155.  96 the 傳說の朝鮮 [Legendary Chosǒn] published by Miwa Tamaki, both published in 1919. Both were compiled for the purpose of expanding Japanese knowledge of Korean folk traditions in order to extend Japan’s colonial control.237 In particular, Kwŏn Hyŏngnae finds the second collection, 傳說の朝鮮 [Legendary Chosǒn], to have eight stories that overlap with the Chōsen dōwashū [Collection of Chosǒn Folktales] from 1924.238 Sŏ Tongsu, who examines folk tales as a site of contestation of national identity in the early 1920s, argues that the collection was a conduit through which to disseminate colonial identity in Korean children;239 he notes that by the mid-1920s, many Korean children were quite fluent in Japanese. It is for this reason that the Japanese-published collection of folk tales was marketed in Japanese: in the 1920s, Sŏ asserts, Koreans were more likely to buy books in Japanese or those written by Japanese authors. Sŏ explains that there was an explosion of publications for children supported by the colonial government, so much so that almost as many children’s books/magazines were published as those for adults.240  Kwŏn characterizes the twenty-five stories as follows: they give no reference to their origins, but seem to have been collected in Korea; except for a few places where the expressions are clearly of Japanese origin, generally the language appears to be “translationese” from Korean; the conflicts in the stories occur between good and evil, with the older characters in general representing evil and the younger ones being good; and the tales are highly didactic. Kwŏn points out that some of the values, such as obedience (yusun) and courteousness (ch’injŏl) were not traditionally celebrated values, and cannot be found easily in oral literature or in the  237 Kwŏn Hyŏngnae (2009) 158-9. 238 Kwŏn Hyŏngnae (2009) 159. 239 Sŏ Tongsu (2008) 255. 240 Sŏ Tongsu (2008) 258.  97 vernacular fiction (kososŏl) of Korea; he concludes that these are “Japanese” values that are injected into Korean folk tales. The folktales in this collection have enhanced elements of fantasy and preserve an element of humor. And lastly, the stories are marked by the presence of a narrator who asserts his voice conspicuously.241 Some of the stories, Kwŏn states, attest to the effort made on the part of the Japanese editor to make a statement through the Korean folk tales. Kwŏn points particularly to the tale “Ŏmŏni rŭl pŏrin namja” [The Man who Discarded his Mother]. The story tells of an evil and petty man who hauls his aging mother on an A-frame carrier on his back in order to discard her, because the man blames her for his poverty. Upon his return, the man’s son refuses to get rid of the decrepit A-frame; when the father demands to know the reason, the son responds that he needs to save it in order to one day discard his own father. This causes the man to reconsider his ways and retrieve his mother. Kwŏn acknowledges that the story was widely known—it can be found, in fact, in the Samgang haengsilto [Illustrated Exemplars of the Three Bonds] from 1432—and the 1924 Japanese volume of Chosǒn folktales was its third occasion for publication in the colonial period. But while the story circulated in Korea from the fifteenth century, the heavy hand of the editor is felt in this publication in one aspect: the story is told, according to Kwŏn Hyŏngnae, in a manner which places the blame for this incident on the misguided Korean society rather than on an individual.242 Kwŏn’s argument—that the Japanese editors communicated messages of the fundamental inferiority of Korean society and culture—is also supported with evidence from school textbooks at the time, in particular the six-volume Pot’ong hakkyo chosŏnŏ tokpon [Elementary school Korean Reader 1923-4]. The textbook was a reader for beginning learners of Korean, and  241 Kwŏn Hyŏngnae (2009) 165-9.  98 it contains many folk tales, both Korean and those of Aesop.243  But the texts and illustrations were manipulated in order to disseminate ideologies of loyalty to the state and emperor, often replacing Korean images with Japanese ones. For example, Sŏ demonstrates how the illustrations (using techniques of perspective, for example), depict a clear hierarchy between the Japanese colonizers and Korean children, and clearly demand that children should aspire to follow in their colonizers’ footsteps. In conclusion, Sŏ claims that literature and other printed materials for children tried, on the one hand, to encourage readers to adopt feelings of national pride and independence; on the other hand, however, texts from the colonial period reproduced ideologies guided by colonial policies.244 3.5.2 Folk Tales and Nationalism Folk Tale translations by Pang Chǒnghwan and Ch’oe Namsŏn began to appear more frequently following Pang’s “call for translations” (mentioned above in 3.5). Ch’oe’s translations appeared in the magazine Tongmyŏng [Eastern Light, 東明]	 in 1923; and Pang’s translations of the Grimm Tales appeared first in Kaebyŏk in 1922, and then in Ŏrini in 1923. Most notable, however, was Pang Chǒnghwan’s translations (from the Japanese) of ten European folk tales that were published in the acclaimed collection Sarang ŭi sŏnmul [Gift of Love].245 Published in 1922, the collection sold an astonishing number of copies—roughly 16,000—at the time. Its impact on the popularization of folk tales has been noted widely in recent scholarship (Yŏm  242 Kwŏn Hyŏngnae (2009) 178-9. 243 Sŏ Tongsu (2008) 262. 244 Sŏ Tongsu (2008) 262-7. 245 Kim Hwasŏn (2007) raises the question of the power imbalance that the act of translation embodied in the process of translating from the colonial language of Japanese into Korean. This aspect of the translated folk tales by Pang frames the reception of his translation and makes it more complex, since, as Kim Hwasŏn points out, foreign children’s literature  99 Hŭigyŏng 2007; Pak Hyesuk 2005; Kim and An 2007).  Yŏm Hŭigyŏng (2007) notes that while there were a few collections of translated folk tales published in Korea by Koreans both before and after Pang’s Sarang ŭi sŏnmul,246 they were heavily inundated with Christian messages. In contrast, Pang’s translation approach was inspired by Ch’ŏndogyo philosophy and nationalism (see discussion in section 2.5), and his philosophical and nationalistic approach colored both the content and the language of his translations.247  Pang’s interest in folk tales—as publicized in his ‘call for folk tales’ that was discussed above, and which he exhibited through his best-selling translated collection Sarang ŭi sŏnmul—also spilled over into his children’s magazine Ŏrini. The decade following the March First Uprising of 1919 was followed, as has been noted above, by roughly another decade of relatively lenient cultural and publication policies. Traces of the relative freedom of expression can be found both in the illustrations of Ŏrini and in the folk tales in the magazine. An example of the celebration of national symbols appears in figure 32, which is an image from issue 3 of 1929. This issue was subtitled the “Chosŏn pride volume” (Chosŏn charangho), and contained such pieces as the opening poem “Chosŏn charang ka,” complete with the iconic tiger.  contains within it a combination of foreign language and literariness and a modern (Western) view of children. (331-2) 246 Kŭm pangul [Goldern Bell] by O Ch’ŏnsŏk and published by Kwangik Sŏgwan in 1921; T’ŭksŏn segye tonghwajip [特選世界童話集 Selected world tales] published by Pogŭmsa in 1935; and Ch’oe Inhwa’s Kidokkyo tonghwajip [基督敎童話集, Collected Christian Tales] published by Chuil Hakkyo Kyojaesa in 1940. 247 Yŏm Hŭigyŏng (2007) 161.  100          Figure 32 Proud Tiger    As Kim Ŭnch’ŏn (2002) remarks, folk tales make up a large portion of the stories included in Ŏrini. She divides Ŏrini tales into two categories: those that convey didactic messages that portray children engaging in acts of wisdom and bravery, and those that portray children in more deplorable states and that illicit pity and evoke an emotional reaction in their readers.248 Both can be read, within the colonial context, as either an attempt to empower children, or to acknowledge the inequalities of colonial society and their adverse effects on young people.  248 Kim Ŭnch’ŏn 31-41.  101  “Ŏrini ŭi kkoe”249 [The child’s trick], for example, is a tale about a king who is visited one day by a foreign messenger. When the messenger arrives in the king’s court he sits down in the center of his court and, without another word, draws a circle around himself. The meaning behind this escapes the king completely, and he orders one of his ministers to solve the mystery or lose his head. At a loss, this minister falls into despair until his son assures him that he has the answer. On the advice of his son, the minister approaches the foreign messenger with a hen and two bones. He places the bones in front of the messenger; the messenger, surprised, tosses a handful of sweet rice, which the hen then proceeds to eat. The messenger leaves without a word. When asked about the meaning behind this amazing exchange, the minister recites what his son has told him to say: “When the messenger drew the circle around himself, he meant to say ‘if we attack you, will you surrender?’; and the bones were thrown so mean, ‘Your country means no more than a child’s bones to us.’ Upon this, the messenger sprinkled the sweet rice to mean, ‘Even if our army is this large?’ and in response, the hen ate all the rice, to mean ‘your army is to us like the rice is to this hen.’ And that is why he left.” This story celebrates not only children’s intelligence by making the child the hero of the story—his heroism heightened by the fact that only the child (reader) knows who is behind the solving of this mystery.  Another tale, “Sŏnnaengnim k’o”250 [Teacher’s nose] is a story about the compassion that a rich child, Sudongi, feels for his much poorer teacher. In order to treat his teacher to a warm meal, he steals a family heirloom and hides it in the roof; he then tells his father that his teacher has an uncanny power to “smell metal” and will be able to find the lost golden frog his father so desperately wants to find. The teacher follows Sudongi’s instructions and retrieves the piece, but word gets out to the emperor of China, who has also lost something valuable. The teacher is then taken to  249 Ŏrini 1.10, 10-11.  102 China and is saved only by Sudongi’s cunning. This story both celebrates children’s wisdom and satirizes the gullible adults. And in another story, “Sŏnmul anin sŏnmul”251 [The gift that was no gift], a king wishes to take over the properties of kindly but wealthy Mr. An. The King tells Mr. An that if he does not solve a riddle in three days, he will be killed. Mr. An’s thirteen year-old daughter solves the riddle on his behalf and saves his life; she is rewarded with a royal wedding. Here, too, the cleverness of children acts as salvation, but within particular rules of conduct in which rulers (the king, in this instance) have absolute authority over the lives of their subjects.  The folk tales mentioned above that were published in Ŏrini conveyed often didactic messages about loyalty, national pride, and empowering messages of young people’s wisdom. However, as mentioned earlier, there is a second category of stories: sentimental tales that describe moments of resilience in the face of humiliation. In the tale “Kaegŭm ŭi tŏk”252 [The virtue of honesty], for example, a young blind brother is abused terribly by his older brother and sister-in-law; but he pays the abuse no heed, and even when he gets slapped in the face with the rice spoon after asking his sister-in-law for dinner, he tells his mother that he was fed very well. In “Pŏridŏgi ŭi kong”253 [Pŏridŏgi’s meritorious deed] one tragedy after another occurs until young Pŏridŏgi manages to save her mother’s life; and in “Tukkŏbi wa chine”254 [The toad and the centipede], a brave toad stays loyal to his young mistress and sacrifices his life to save her from a smoke-breathing, larger-than-life centipede. While the stories that focus on particularly  250 Ŏrini 4.12, 56-9. 251 Ŏrini 2.2, 2-5. 252 “Kaegŭm ŭi tŏk” Ŏrini 1.8 30-35. 253 Ŏrini 1926 4.12, 42-45. 254 Ŏrini (1925) 3.3, 6-10.  103 meritorious or self-sacrificing children also convey typical socializing messages,255 the function of these stories can also be understood within the larger context: specifically, how the indigenous religion of Ch’ŏndogyo shaped Pang Chǒnghwan and his constructed vision of the child. 3.6 Ch’ǒndogyo and Pang Chǒnghwan The influence of Ch’ǒndogyo extended beyond the organization of popular activism.256 There seems to have been a general sense that schools were sites of exploitation in which children were being indoctrinated by manipulating and distorted adult visions of children. In response to these manipulative public spaces, youth groups began to multiply, and created gathering spaces for youth to interact and develop their own youth culture.257 The social youth organizations of Ch’ǒndogyo known as the ch’ǒndogyo ch’ŏngnyŏnhoe, set out to implement social reform or “remodeling” (kaejo 改造). This reform would then establish a national identity that would facilitate the cultivation of modern consciousness (kŭndaejŏk ŭisik) and enlightenment, with the ultimate goal of creating a new culture.258  Ch’ǒndogyo had a specific vision of humanity represented by the concept of innaech’ŏn 人乃天, meaning that heaven (the sacred, God, the spirit) is innate in all humans. It was this  255 For example, the young lady in “Tukkŏbi wa chine” was one of a long line of young women that had to be sacrificed to the centipede, and the narrator notes that the people mourned the young girl’s passing in particular because they never had a chance to be married, a message that itself conveys the expectation of marriage as an integral part of the rite of passage into adulthood. 256 On the religion’s role in social activism, see O Munhwan (2007). 257 In “Sonyǒnhoe iyagi”  [About youth groups, Ŏrini (1925) 3.5 8-11] a child (一少年) and a guide (指導者) have a conversation about youth organizations. The child wonders about the purpose of youth organizations and gets a lecture about how children are exploited by adults.  104 vision of humanity that Pang drew upon when he constructed the vision of the ŏrini child in his own writings, which he published in the magazines Sin yǒsǒng, Ŏrini, and Kaebyǒk, as well as in his writings in the newspaper The Chosǒn Ilbo. The driving force behind the magazine Ŏrini, in particular, was to save children from the oppression that victimized them. In 1923, the first “Children’s Day” was announced, and its credo was described as follows:  1. To liberate children from ethical repressions and to treat them with absolute human behavior. 2. To liberate children from financial oppression and abolish child labor under the age of fourteen. 3. To create family and social institutions that will allow children both to learn quietly and play joyfully.259  Pang Chŏnghwan260 was committed to these tenets, and his philosophy regarding children is best captured by the essay “In praise of the child” published in 1924 in the women’s magazine Sin yǒsǒng. Pang starts his meditative exposition by observing a sleeping child, and extols the peace and quiet that he finds in the child’s sleeping face; he then goes on to compare the child to the face of Han’unim (the innate God or spirit), and declares: This ŏrini is now sleeping at my knees. He is the embodiment of absolute purity, absolute kindness, absolute beauty, and moreover he is blessed with a tremendous force of creativity, this ŏrin-han’unim who sleeps now in such peace and quiet. Anyone observing [this child] will not have the space to stray into encumbering meditations; the mind of the observer is purified, making possible only the most noble of thoughts.261 Pang insisted that children were incapable of duplicity; they were transparent, felt their emotions deeply and displayed them without inhibitions. As the tenet of innaech’ŏn indicates,  258 Yi Kihun (2002) 23. 259 Chŏng Insŏp Saektonghoe ŏrini undongsa (1975), quoted in Kim Ŭnch’ŏn (27). 260 Their organization, Saektonghoe, set up by Pang and his peers in Japan in 1920, exists until today: <http://www.saekdong.or.kr/> (accessed on 22 Nov 2010).  105 children harbored heaven inside themselves, and were therefore in need of protection by adults. Only once children were properly protected would the ultimate goal of Ch’ǒndogyo be achieved: the building of an earthly paradise.262 Pang’s writings reflected his beliefs in the innocence and beauty of children, in their artlessness and closeness to nature and therefore to a purer, truer version of humans. Pang explains that ŏrini, which he liked to call “pure lumps of luck,”263 are so in tune with nature that they are the first to respond to spring. They sing with the birds and dance with the butterflies; they are happy with rain, with snow, and with the sun. “Everything around them is, to ŏrini, happiness, love, and friendship.” And as such, ŏrini are the incarnation both of God’s intention and of his revelations. Therefore, anyone who is able to live in close proximity to ŏrini and to learn from ŏrini will be happy. The ŏrini, says Pang “knows no sadness. He knows no anxiety.”264 Aside from children’s intuitive connection with nature, Pang notes that ŏrini are inherently artistic and that their world is composed of three parts: storytelling, song, and drawing. Ŏrini transform the mundane into beauty, and they experience life through the stories they are told.265 Ŏrini are also “natural poets;” when they sing—even songs that were written by adults—their yearning for the independence of their country comes gushing out.266 Finally, Pang describes children’s innate artistic talent, which he declares to be free of artifice and other learned mannerisms. They produce candid and true portraits that  261 Sin yǒsǒng (1924) 6, 67. 262 Yi Kihun (2002) 29. The three main tenets of Ch’ǒndogyo being 布德天下 (P’odǒk ch’ǒnha, spreading truth around the world;  廣濟蒼生 (Kwangje ch’angsaeng, delivering people from suffering) and  保國安民 (Pogŭk anmin, supporting the nation and comforting the people.) See http://www.chondogyo.or.kr/new/celist.htm (accessed on 18 Nov 2010). 263 “Ŏrini ch’anmi” Sin yǒsǒng (1924) 6, 67. 264 “Ŏrini ch’anmi” Sin yǒsǒng (1924) 6, 68. 265 “Ŏrini ch’anmi” Sin yǒsǒng (1924) 6, 69. 266 “Ŏrini ch’anmi” Sin yǒsǒng (1924) 6, 69-70.  106 originate from their intuitive ability to see true forms around them.267 In a national context, the children are endowed not only with the gift of cleansing and purifying those around them; they are bestowed with transcendental significance as the only beings capable of saving their world. Children’s essence—their tongsim, or child-mind—is entrusted with the crucial role of transforming the world into a better place. 3.7 Tongsimjuŭi Considering the fact that Pang Chǒnghwan was the son-in-law of the spiritual leader of Ch’ǒndogyo, there is no reason to doubt the influence that this religion exerted on Pang’s construction of ŏrini. What must be considered, however, is the influence of Japanese children’s magazines on Pang during the time he spent in Japan. Pang studied children’s literature and psychology at Tōyō University in 1919; it is no coincidence that Pang chose for his pen name ‘Sop’a,’ written with the characters “小波,” a name that shares characters with the Japanese writer Iwaya Sazanami (巌谷小波). Iwaya (1870-1933) is “considered by many to be the true pioneer of [Japanese] children’s literature as a field… [who] turned to children’s literature in order to contribute to the building of a rich country and strong army (fukoku kyōhei)”.268 Pang was also inspired by Japanese children’s writer Ogawa Mimei (小川未明,	 1882-1961),269 and by the debut of Suzuki Miekichi’s270 magazine Akai Tori  [Red Bird, 赤い鳥] in 1918. With  267 “Ŏrini ch’anmi” Sin yǒsǒng (1924) 6, 70-1 268 See Nona Carter, 34-5. 269 Nona Carter notes that “the first work over which there is no doubt or contention is Ogawa Mimei’s 小川未明 Akai fune [Red Ship 赤い船] in 1911. All scholars agree that it is a modern children’s publication, though few claim it to be the first” (51). 270 鈴木三重吉, 1882-1936.  107 Red Bird, Japanese children’s literature “took a drastic turn”;271 it is credited with kicking off the period of artistic literature for children for which the Taishō era (1912-1926) is famous, particularly for the phenomenon most indicative of these changing notions of childhood, the child-mind (K. Tongsimjuŭi, J. dōshin shugi 童心主義) movement.272 Carter notes that  The founders [of Akai Tori] considered their endeavor to be not just the publication of a new magazine, but a social movement, stressing creative freedom and liberal education. In particular, the Red Bird group espoused the child-mind principle, a philosophy that upheld the belief in children’s innocence. The two components of child-mind literature are that the child is at the center, and the child’s psychology is of the utmost importance.273  Carter also notes that in Japan, “the child-mind became so wrapped up in nostalgia during the Taishō period, that the word ‘child’ became almost synonymous with ‘nostalgia.’ Nostalgia was used as a literary device in folktales as well as all other stories for or about children.” But as seen above in section 3.6, it seems that what came across as nostalgia in Japan was transformed in Korea and specifically by Ch’ǒndogyo as a portrayal of purity for the purpose of inspiring change and eliciting sympathy for the suffering of children at the hands of adults (implying also exploitation by the colonial authorities).  Pang was inspired by the works that appeared in Akai Tori,274 and was then responsible for circulating the term tongsim in Korea upon his return in 1920. As noted above, Pang visited Japan at a moment in Japanese literary history when tongsim was at the center of literary discourse. Writing about Japan, Kawahara Kazue explains that Japan’s dōshin concept was a  271 Carter 76. 272 Nona Carter, 76-7; Norma Field notes that “writing for children failed to yield anything comparable to the Western “cult of the child” until the Taishō period.”  See Children and the Politics of Culture, 69. 273 Carter 77. 274 Wǒn 2008, 91  108 construction that was heavily influenced by western culture, starting around 1868 at the beginning of the Meiji Restoration. Up until then, children were part of the feudal system, and were therefore acknowledged only in relation to their social position.275 This began to change with reforms to the education system in 1872, when children were brought together regardless of class with the purpose of transforming them into loyal Imperial citizens.  The aforementioned magazine Akai Tori [Red Bird], which exerted a significant influence on Pang, was established in 1918 to promote children’s literature of artistic value. Its contributors were previously unconnected to children’s literature, and the magazine did well commercially. The advent and success of this magazine marked the beginning of the “springtime of children’s magazines” in Japan. Kawahara explains that Akai Tori catered to the purchasing parents and the new middle class in Japan.276 Carter notes that many contributors to Akai Tori were social activists who fought for children’s rights; they were opposed to Japan’s stratified social order and encouraged children to be free and creative. The goal of the child-mind principle was “to attribute humanity to children, to recognize [childrens’] unique psychology, and to strive for an education that foster[ed] free and creative thinking. It [was] the antithesis of the old feudal education system.”277  In her analysis of stories from the first decade of Akai Tori, the period during which it exerted the most influence on Pang Chǒnghwan, Kawahara finds that the child was constructed as simultaneously having a sweet temperament (sweet, filial, hardworking, reflective; a child who aligns him/herself with the social/ethical rules); weak (soft-hearted, poor, sickly and abused); and innocent.278  Kawahara quotes several of the prominent writers for  275 Kawahara Kazue, Kodomo-kan no kindae [Modernity of the Child-concept] (1988) 13. 276 Kawahara 73-92. 277 Kan Tadamichi (管忠道), quoted in Carter 78. 278 Kawahara 105-6.  109 children in 1921 Japan, and argues that for a time they wrote not for ‘real’ children, but for an ideal, abstract idea of the child.  It is easy to see how this model of innocence suited Pang’s Ch’ǒndogyo-inspired understanding of innaech’ŏn perfectly. Both tongsim (童心) and ŏrini were particularly amenable concepts because they aestheticized childhood and constructed the child as pure, innocent, and worthy of respect—all characteristics that were amenable to the production of literature for children (because their innocence meant that children had to be protected from their often harsh reality). Literature, in turn, perpetuated and enforced this construct. Tongsim was the most intuitive, natural state of being, and by extension it was deeply connected to nature and the environment. The importance of tongsim has been pointed out by virtually every scholar of children’s literature in Korea (Kim Chonghǒn 2008a; Cho Ŭnsuk 2009), and has served as a point of reference for all writers of children’s literature since its inception. While it was condemned from the mid-20s into the 1930s by the socialist and proletarian writers, the position of tongsim as the driving force of literature for children in the 1920s and, indeed, the very validity of the concept, has never been questioned to the present day.  The tongsim concept was not invented in twentieth-century Japan, of course. It was a concept that circulated in Chinese philosophy since the time of Mencius and Laozi, and was taken up again in the fifteenth century by the founder of the Wang school of thought, Wang Shouren (1472-1529), better known as Wang Yangming. Wu Pei-Yi (1995) notes that under the Wang school, “the innocence of children was strongly reaffirmed, and the preservation of this quality became more important than the mere acquisition of knowledge.”279 Wang’s theory of  279 See Wu Pei-Yi, “Childhood Remembered: Parents and Children in China, 800-1700” 146.  110 innate knowledge demanded that children be elevated in the Confucian hierarchy.280 Li Zhi (李 贄	 1527-1602), who was influenced by Wang Yangming, penned the essay Tongxin shuo (童心 說 [On the Child-like Mind]). In it, he wrote that “the heart of the child is absolutely not false put pure and true… If one loses the heart of the child then he loses his true heart”281; and that “All great literature comes from the child-like mind…”.282 Li Zhi’s disciple Yuan Hongdao (袁 宏道	 1568-1610), too, elaborated on the relationship between child, nature and truth and equated the innocence of the child with perfection.283 Yuan Hongdao’s work on qu (Ch. 趣; Kor. ch’wi), meaning ‘taste’ or ‘understanding,’ accords the child a privileged status: Qu is more a matter of nature than of learning. When one is a child, one does not know that one has qu, but whatever a child does always has to do with qu. A child has no fixed expression in the face, no fixed gaze in the eyes. He babbles in trying to speak while his feet jump up and down without stopping. This is the time when the joy of life is unsurpassed. This is what is meant by Mencius when he speaks of “not losing [the heart of] the newborn infant” or by Laozi when he speaks of “the power of the babe.” This is the highest level of qu, the superior understanding, and the supreme enlightenment.284 The above quote demonstrates that tongsim evokes ideologies regarding childhood dating back to ancient Chinese philosophy which, as Kinney notes, exhibited a sensitivity to children’s “natural proclivities” and brought about an “increase in literary works recounting the lives of deceased children” in China.285  280 Wu 146. 281 Quoted in Wu 147. 282 Jiang Jin (2001), “Heresy and Persecution in Late Ming Society: Reinterpreting the Case of Li Zhi” 1. 283 Wu 147. 284 Quoted in Wu 147. 285 See Anne Kinney (1995) 5.  111 Besides tongsim, the term adongsŏng 兒童性 [child-ness] also entered the discourse about children in early 1920s Korea.286 In an essay published in Kaebyŏk in January of 1923,287 Pang says that he is compelled to raise some important points about folk tales (tonghwa) in the face of growing publication for children, and because of the public’s ignorance about folk tales in general. Tonghwa are crucial to the development of children, he insists; their benefits include the development of emotional maturity, good sense, compassion, and even a good foundation for religious belief. Children’s need for stories is innate and natural just as is their need for mothers’ milk, he says. Tonghwa are not just for children, however, but for adults, too. As such, tonghwa are a genre that never loses its eternal adongsŏng [child-ness] and must reflect and communicate universal truths.288 There is no one that does not have “adongsŏng,” and it must therefore be protected at all costs and continuously refined. We must never give up the struggle to return to the homeland—the clean, beautiful and pure child-heart, he writes.289 However, the more Pang idealized the child the more remote it became. Section 2.4 discusses his depictions of children in folk tales as wise and brave; in some of his creative prose, Pang highlights children’s transcendent goodness. For example, note one of Pang’s most famous stories which gets anthologized in contemporary collections of children’s stories, “Mannyŏn syassŭ” [A Shirt to last ten-thousand years; see Appendix 1.1). Ch’angnami is a high-spirited  286 The term adongsŏng carries much of the same meanings as tongsim; tongsim became the more frequently used term in the late 1920s (Cho 130). 287 “새로開拓되는 ‘童話’에 관하야 in: Kaebyŏk (1923) 4.1, 18-25. 288 Yi Kihun (2002) argues that Pang borrowed the idea that children’s literature must never lose its child-ness and be accessible to all people from the Japanese writer for children, Ogawa Mimei (26). 289 우리는 누구나 가지고잇는 "永遠한兒童性"을 이 兒童의 世界에서 保持해가지 안호면안될것이요 또나아가 洗鍊해가지아니하면 아니된다. 우리는 자조 그깨끗한  112 grade school boy, whose positive attitude masks his terrible poverty. When the school year start in the dead of winter, he has almost no clothes to wear to protect him from the cold. When his gym teacher confronts him, the child reluctantly reveals the extreme of his poverty, leaving not a single dry eye in the school. The boy’s superhuman ability to withstand the winter cold with bare feet and a naked back is met with a deluge of tears by his teacher and fellow students. While the narrator provides the reader with the boy’s voice, the melodramatic elements of this story—in which the angelic child maintains high spirits while he gives away everything he owns, including, quite literally, the shirt off his back in the dead of winter— ultimately detract from its effectiveness. What is missing from this story is any sense that the child is complex, conflicted, or otherwise human in any way. In other words, it lacks the agency of the child and a real child’s voice. Pang’s work is the subject of a great deal of criticism, both positive and negative. Some scholars (Wŏn 2008) insist on the significance of his work in the 1920s, particularly for its contribution to the repertoire of children’s literature in general and realism in children’s literature in particular. Kim Chonghŏn (2008a) also defends Pang’s approach to writing literature, remarking that Pang’s contributions carved out a space for children in society that was not bound by parental rights and gave them a voice to resist the status quo and incite change. Pang argued that children’s movements had been unsuccessful before the 1920s because children had continuously been encouraged to obey their parents, elders, and the colonial authority. His construction of the child was guided by his passion to encourage children to resist the feudal social structure and Japanese imperialism.290 However, Pang has a fair share of  그곱고맑은 故鄕--兒童의 마음에 돌아가기에 힘쓰지아니하면 아니된다. Kaebyŏk (1923) 4.1, 21. 290 Kim Chonghŏn (2008) 61-2.  113 critics as well. Yi Chaebok (1995) accuses Pang of being oblivious to children’s plight during the colonial period and of creating a rupture between literature and reality; and of sowing the seeds of sentimentalism in literature for children.291 Pak Chiyŏng (2005) also concludes that Pang’s tongsimjuŭi resulted in another form of confinement of the child rather than in the child’s liberation.292 Actually, Pang’s construction of the child made children’s literature a space in which adults could return or reconnect with an imagined, utopian space of childhood. The preservation and reproduction of child-ness (adongsŏng) or the child-mind (tongsim) seems to be a critical—if not entirely desirable—condition for the creation of a literature for children in the first place. For without an imposed category or social construction of the child, and without an emotional attachment to this construction, it seems difficult for children’s literature to appear in the first place. The kind of literature that Pang was advocating, the kind he deemed appropriate for children, was literature that emphasized honesty, spontaneity and simplicity of language versus overly complex and artificial content.293 His works reflect the idea that the way to access the child-essence was not through the intellect or but through a direct appeal to the emotions. In summary, adongsŏng and tongsim were terms that marked a shift in the construction of the child in print culture that had begun with Ch’oe Namsŏn’s ground-breaking magazine Sonyŏn. The purpose of Ch’oe Namsŏn’s magazine was to mobilize the youth of Korea—the “bright and sturdy suns” of early twentieth-century Korean youth—as the pioneers of a new, modern society and nation on the brink of transformation and change. But in the 1920s, the  291 Yi Chaebok (1995) 5-47. 292 Pak Chiyŏng 177. 293 See Pang’s essays on writing poetry, “Tongyo rŭl chiŭryŏnŭn punkke” [For those intending to write poetry for children] Ŏrini 2.225-27 and “Tongyo chitnŭn pŏp” [How to write children’s poetry] Ŏrini 2.4 32-6.  114 magazine Ŏrini in the hands of Pang Chǒnghwan created a new Korean child: one represented by the terms adongsŏng and tongsim, and one who was charged with the preservation of human goodness and one’s eternal child-ness (the “yŏngwŏnhan adongsŏng” in Kaebyŏk 4.1).  And despite the criticism that Pang endured at the hands of the proletarian writers starting in the mid-1920s—who accused him of essentializing and over-romanticizing children to the extent that it made children’s literature irrelevant and indeed played into the hands of colonial authority—these key terms and concepts played an undeniable role in creating a space in which literature for children could be created.  3.8 Conclusion As illustrated in the first chapter, the concept of the Korean youth was first thrown into relief around the turn of the twentieth-century. A Youngman himself, 18-year-old Ch’oe Namsŏn inaugurated two important literary magazines: Sonyŏn and Ch’ŏngch’un. In particular, Sonyŏn was deliberately designed as reading material for younger readers, and as such conveyed what Ch’oe and his contemporaries considered to be crucial knowledge that would carry Chosŏn Korea successfully into the future as a modern and strong nation. Increasingly, Ch’oe Namsŏn’s conception of youth shifted from the more ambiguous and general term sonyŏn to the older, more politically engaged ch’ǒngnyŏn. Eventually it was the older youth, the ch’ǒngnyŏn, who were to embody the future image of Chosŏn. The colonial control that began in 1905 continued with official annexation in 1910, and the next decade witnessed stringent colonial policies as Japan deployed its own foreign and cultural policies in its colony. At the same time, Korean writers studied and worked in Japan,  115 and there they absorbed both Japanese culture and European culture through Japanese translations, and continued to grapple with the significance of their identities both as consumers of modernity and as colonial subjects. All along, “youth” became a hallmark of their efforts as they hoped to instill both national pride and modern sensibilities in the next generation. It was during this period, however, that Pang Chǒnghwan (1899-1931) established his own magazine that was to run from 1923 until 1936. Pang—motivated by his experience in Japan in 1919 and his meeting with Iwaya Sazanami, as well as being inspired by his own personal connection to the Ch’ŏndogyo leader (and his father-in-law) Son Pyŏnghŭi—set out to create not only a new medium that would cater to younger children (for example through easier orthography and lighter, more entertaining content) but also to construct a new kind of child. If Ch’oe Namsŏn’s sonyŏn and ch’ǒngnyŏn constructs were Chosŏn’s future, and who necessarily had to turn their back resentfully on their past, then Pang’s ŏrini occupied a timeless space of imagined innocence. Pang’s ŏrini were grounded in the immediate present in the sense that they were victims of both colonial exploitation (for example, they were too poor to go to school) and of parental neglect (they were viewed as possessions rather than as individuals). At the same time, they were also put on a pedestal and granted the ability to withstand abuse and humiliation without complaint. Resistance to Pang’s construction of the child, both in the form of social activism and in text, was quick to emerge. The growing presence and influence of socialism began to create fissures in the solidarity of the youth movements. Socialism brought into relief the pressing need for real-time solutions to issues of poverty, children’s disenfranchisement, social class inequality, and a general dissatisfaction with the way that the enlightenment had been taken over and was being controlled and reproduced by the bourgeois. The socialists and their youth  116 organizations now sought to create a new image of the Korean youth: an image which no longer represented merely the romantically suffering youth of Chosŏn. The new image of youth that the proletarians sought to create was one that would be much more representational of the margins, of real children with real problems. A new vision of the child, distributed by a new set of magazines, was born.  117 4 Pyŏllara, Sinsonyŏn and the Rebel 4.1 Introduction The annexation of Korea as a Japanese colony in 1910 and the onslaught of discourses about enlightenment and modernity placed the child, for the first time, at the centre of the now-colonized nation’s collective attention. The driving forces behind the emergence of the construction of the child were mainly, as shown in chapters one and two, Ch’oe Namsŏn and Pang Chŏnghwan. These men were inspired by their travels to Japan and their exposure to a vibrant children’s culture there; and also by the introduction of compulsory education (at least officially) and the emerging discourses, both in theory and practice, about children’s rights driven by Ch’ǒndogyo and related youth movements. These two men played the founding role in the establishment of literature for children because, upon their return to Korea, they set up publishing houses and provided the knowhow and expertise to start Korea’s own children’s magazines. Pang Chǒnghwan and the other contributors to the magazines Ŏrini were particularly motivated by the momentum created by child and youth groups and organizations that actively promoted children’s rights, and were also inspired ideologically by the principles of enlightenment. The ‘child’—broadly encompassing youth of all ages—was widely acknowledged as the future of Korea. Being vulnerable, the child needed protection and guidance; but the child’s pristine mind was untainted by the corruption of the adults who had led Korea to its unfortunate present predicament. The child’s flawlessness and purity primed him to be inscribed with new meaning and positioned the child best to receive the knowledge that was deemed necessary to carry Chosŏn forward.  Sonyŏn294 and Ŏrini were the two main  294 As noted in chapter one, Ch’oe Namsŏn also published other magazines such as Ch’ŏngch’un and Aidŭl boi. But these magazines from the start were aimed at children who could, for example, read mixed Sino-Korean script.  118 magazines that appeared in the first (1908) and third (1923) decade of the twentieth century, and reproduced their own particular constructions of the child in the new nation. Their constructions of the child—as the future of Korea, as a consumer of modernity, as vulnerable and flawlessly good—were reinforced in other magazines in which Pang Chǒnghwan was specifically involved, such as Kaebyŏk and Sin Yŏsong. However, in the early 1920s, another discourse regarding youth started to emerge. Although the subject of this discourse was youth (ch’ŏngnyŏn) and not Pang Chǒnghwan’s preferred ŏrini, the influence of this discourse expanded and added a new construction of the child. It challenged both the image of the child created by Ch’oe (of child as consumer of modernity) and that created by Pang (of the innocent child/victim). It branded Pang’s construction of the child negatively, and argued that Pang’s tongsimjuŭi robbed the child of his agency. This discourse was Socialism.  Yi Kihun (2004a) examines the evolution of socialism through one of its main targets: youth groups. As noted in chapter two, youth groups began to grow even before annexation, and quickly became a site for the dissemination of various discourses of modernity and enlightenment. The groups soon served as spaces to encourage youth to turn their backs on the past and the older generations’ decrepit and outmoded ways (à la Yi Kwangsu) in order to move into the future,295 and to further support the construction of youth as the symbol of the ideal archetype: ethical and rational, civilized and modern, all to be achieved through “cultivation.”296 These, however, were not the only ideas being propagated. As Yi Kihun points out, there were very few young people that could fulfill these lofty expectations. Few young people in the  295 See Yi Kihun (2004a) 290. 296 Yi Kihun (2004a) 290-1.  119 1920s had the wherewithal to be able to pursue cultivation. In fact, the term for youth, ch’ŏngnyŏn, was fluid and loosely used, with youth group members often being “young at heart” and found to be in their 40s or 50s.297  And in the early 1920s, youth groups became fertile targets for contestation over the role of youth in society. It was at this time that socialists in Chosŏn began to vocalize their positions and challenge the hegemonic control held by discourses of modernity and enlightenment. Publishing in magazines such as Sin Saenghwal [新 生活 New Life], advocates of socialism demanded that the term ch’ŏngnyŏn be applied more practically.298 In 1923, the first socialist youth group was formed, the musan ch’ŏngnyŏnhoe or “disenfranchised youth group,” in which socialists began to formulate a mission statement corresponding to Marxist-Leninism.299 Works such as “An Appeal to the Youth” by the likes of the anarcho-communist Peter Kropotkin (1842-1921) were widely read in translation, and socialists began to debate the question of how to wrestle the term ch’ŏngnyŏn away from the dominant discourse of rational enlightenment and toward a discourse of revolution, struggle and liberty. At the same time, the particular colonial context made the insistence on class struggle as a basis of affinity and union problematic.300 Eventually, the socialists settled on the centrality of class struggle as a defining concept in their self-awareness, and an awareness of their responsibility to engage in active struggle for liberation. The age of youth became much more clearly defined by biology and science, to include mostly young people under the age of 30, with the group of under 20s growing tremendously by 1930.301  297 Yi Kihun (2004a) 291. 298 Yi Kihun (2004a) 292. 299 Yi Kihun (2004a) 292-6. 300 Yi Kihun (2004a) 296-9. 301 Yi Kihun (2004a) 199-309.  120  The discourse produced by the socialist youth groups was supported in print in the form of children’s magazines. Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn were the main hubs for these voices; their contributors—including prominent intellectuals such as Pak Seyŏng, Im Hwa, Song Yŏng, and Yi Kiyŏng, to mention but a few—wrote poetry and fiction that celebrated children’s awakened awareness and sense of entitlement, and dramatized the revolutionary, explosive anger that children harbored over their parents’ (and by extension, their nation’s) deluded conduct. These contributors also wrote political essays for their child readers that lauded the virtues of the socialist system, and expounded on the exploitative workings of the capitalist system and the inherent evil of those enjoying the privileges of that system. Together, Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn manipulated the term tongsim, remodeling it into an active, self-aware, and empowered essence ready to be educated to the workings of politics and society and to take action. This child was bred for “realism”; he and she were now equally ready to confront the hardships facing Korean children in school and in the factories. Children were ready for action.302  4.2 Tongsim under attack The role played by Pang Chŏnghwan (pen name Sop’a 小波) was discussed in detail in the previous chapter.  Besides his many works and translations, and the role that he played in initiating “Children’s day” (Ǒrini nal), Pang’s significant contribution to the development of print culture for children include his magazine Ŏrini; his incessant collection of Korean folk tales and translation of foreign folktales, both in children’s and in adult magazines. His translated collection of foreign folk tales, Sarang ŭi sŏnmul, played a seminal role in the  302 The 1930s proletarian magazines discussed in this chapter did include the magazines’ formatting a certain amount of design and icons. However, these magazines are much barer  121 popularization of folk tales in general. Pang had created a space for children’s culture that was there to stay. Pang’s work, significant as it was, came under harsh criticism in the mid-1920s and 1930s with the growth of socialism and proletarian consciousness both at home and abroad. His contributions became synonymous with tongsimjuŭi: exaggerated sentimentalism and a romanticized portrayal of the child which robbed the child of its agency and of any recognizable human emotions. Pang’s romanticization of the child was not, however, his own creation, nor was it formed in a vacuum. While their construction of the child was not romanticized per se, the work of Ch’oe Namsŏn and Yi Kwangsu imposed an image of enlightenment and education upon a child that was seemingly an empty vessel ready to absorb knowledge and to be transformed. But more importantly, like Ch’oe and Yi, Pang too travelled to Japan (in 1919) and there was exposed to and inspired by Japanese children’s culture and magazines. Nona Carter notes that the rise of the proletariat movement in Japan brought about significant innovations in literature, and exerted influence on writers writing for children, as well:  The purpose of proletarian children’s literature was to raise class awareness within children’s literature and write for the working class children. The movement was based on the impetus to counter bourgeois and religious thought, and to focus on the international proletariat movement.303   in terms of visual culture in comparison with magazines of the 1920s and late 1930s, and for this reason a discussion of visual culture has not been included in chapter four. 303 Carter 86.  122 Carter notes that despite the loss of momentum of this movement in 1931, “the influence the proletariat writers had on their times and on latter works was immense.”304 Samuel Perry also notes the criticism that the proletariat writers aimed at those perpetuating the ‘innocence myth’:  The Japanese world of letters had itself made no small contribution to a wide-spread idealization of childhood innocence in its nostalgic invocations of happy boyhood, untroubled by the world of adult affairs. Essentially a romantic response to an earlier Meiji didacticism, this imaginary experience of childhood was encapsulated by the Japanese term dōshin [K. tongsim].305  According to Carter, the criticism of the romanticized, didactic literature for children gave impetus to realism, which in turn played an important role in the development of a Japanese nationalist literature in the 1930s and 40s.306 Yokosuka Kaoru (2004) points out that the Japanese term dōshinshugi indicates literature that appeared in the Taishō era in Japan (1912-1926). It was coined officially in 1935 by the proletarian writer Makimoto Kusurō (1898-1956), an active writer of children’s fiction and poetry who published the very first proletarian book for children.307 Sam Perry says that Makimoto Kusurō himself decried,  the evocation of childhood in Japanese literature as the “elevation of children to a supra-class existence of angels, artlessness and innocence.” By embracing a realist epistemology and class as a mode of social analysis, the proletarian children’s movement, insofar as children’s literature was concerned, helped to shift the subject of Japanese children’s literature from a romantic idealization of an earlier stage of development onto the present day experience of living children.308   304 Carter 87. 305 Perry (2007) 144. 306 Carter 87. 307 Kusurō’s first proletarian collection for children displayed Korean vernacular letters on its cover: the words P’ŭroret’aria and tongyojip (see replica in Ōtake 145) 308 Perry (2007) 145.  123 Yokosuka notes that the proletarian writers in Japan such as Makimoto Kusurō initiated the most virulent attacks against the concept of dōshin in Japan. They argued that this term had essentialized the child under an umbrella term which in fact signified only the privileged, bourgeois child. In an article published in 1928, Makimoto Kusurō accused children’s poetry of ignoring crucial issues of class: [Children’s poets] are not looking at real, present children. They have no eyes for those children, scattered in every corner of our society. And even if they do see them, they are only looking at one specific class: those “loveable” children. They don’t look at any other children besides those of the bourgeois and petit-bourgeois, who are the children that can fulfill their ideological expectations; [these poets] simply impose their image of children upon everyone else, as if they somehow represent children.309  But it was not only the proletarian writers who spoke against dōshinshugi (K. tongsimjuŭi) in their writing. Educators in Japan also took issue with the romanticized portrayal of children. Some actively published their criticism of dōshinshugi in the creative writing magazine Kōtei 工程 [process];310 others, say Yokosuka, were less direct in their accusations, preferring to label the object of their criticism as “Akai Tori-style writing” rather than explicitly labeling them dōshinshugi.311 The concept of dōshinshugi was attacked by both sides of the political spectrum in Japan: both the proletarians, who saw this vision of the child as detrimental to building children with real social consciousness, and right-winged nationalists such as Hatano Kanji, who, as Yokosuka mentioned, argued that the dōshinshugi model was an obstacle toward building a strong Japanese empire.312    309 Quoted in Yokosuka 184. My own translation. 310 Yokosuka 185. 311 Yokosuka 185. 312 Yokosuka 186.  124 4.3 Proletarian Magazines in Japan: Shōnen senki  The proletarian magazine Youth Battle Flag (Shōnen senki 少年戦旗), founded in 1929 by Ino Yoshimitsu (猪野省三), was the only children’s magazine in Japan that reached out to the social organizations of children and recognized the subjectivity of children in Korea. This magazine connected Koreans living in Korea and those living in Japan.313 It marked, for example, ŏrini nal, Korea’s Children’s Day (which took place on the first of May until 1961, when it began to be celebrated on the 5th of May) with particular relish: an editorial from 1930 notes how, on this day, the children of Korea come out holding red flags and “threaten the arrogant bourgeois.”314 From other editorials, it seems that the magazine served as a platform from which members were able to connect to workers regardless of their nationality; another editorial from 1930 speaks of the need to “hold hands with our brothers from Chosǒn and China.”315 A published letter from a Korean reader claimed that “the only way to bring Chosǒn back to its feet is to grasp the hands of Japanese workers and farmers and struggle together.”316  The editorials, letters, and poetry in this magazine are strikingly similar to the content of the proletarian children’s magazines in Korea. Take this example from Shōnen senki in June of 1930:  For Children’s Day, let us all shout out these words and demonstrate against the capitalist landowners: The future is ours. Do not exploit children. Do not charge elementary school tuition. Give out school supplies for free. Do not charge children with dangerous activities. Stop all night shift work.  313 Ōtake 139. 314 Ōtake 140. 315 Ōtake 143. 316 Ōtake 144.  125 Worker children of the world, weak children of the world — unite!317  Not surprisingly, this magazine made an impression on major intellectuals and activists in Korea, who were then inspired to write similar material in Korea. One example is that of Im Hwa (1908-1953), a frequent contributor to the leftist magazine Pyŏllara. Im Hwa, who studied in Japan for roughly a year in 1931, contributed to Makimoto Kusurō’s very first proletarian collection of fiction and poetry for children, Akai Hata [The Red Flag] with his Korean translations of one of Makimoto Kusurō’s poems. Makimoto Kusurō endorsed Im’s translation, noting that the “fine translation” by “the colonial poet Im Hwa.”318 This magazine illustrates the intimate connection between social movements in Japan and Korea, reflected both in the shared terminology of dōshinshugi/tongsimjuŭi and in the content of proletarian magazines, which took center stage in the space of cultural production for children in colonial Korea from 1929 until 1934. The Korea Artista Proletaria Federato (KAPF) was created in Korea in 1925 and disbanded by the colonial authorities in 1935. Its literary activities posed a serious challenge to the two mainstream literary trends: the cultural nationalist trend, and the art-for-art’s-sake trend. Kim Yunsik (Kim and Yoon 2006) attributes the forceful impact of KAPF on literary production in Korea to two factors: the movement’s internationalism (its ties to equivalent literary bodies in the USSR and Japan);319 and its great popularity among and support of the socialist movement in Korea.320 According to Kim, the long-lasting legacy of the KAPF literary trend, which openly celebrated its political and social agenda, was the commitment to  317 Translated from the Korean translation of the original Japanese by Ōtake (143). 318 Ōtake 146. 319 In this context, see Sam Perry’s discussion (2006) of internationalism in the Japanese Communist movement.  126 realism.321 KAPF writers turned to realism “as a way to reconcile the concrete representation of real life in literature with a scientific worldview;”322 their work gave prominence to social conflict and the suffering of the landless peasants/working class with the purpose of instigating social reform.323 As Perry puts it, “both the Korean and Japanese intelligentsia were, under an increasingly fascist regime and desperate economic times, looking for works of art that exposed to the dominant social class the human suffering that imperialism was irrefutably causing.”324 Writing about KAPF literature in the context of children’s literature, Kim Sŏngjin (2004) argues that what differentiated the work of KAPF writers from others (e.g. Pang Chǒnghwan) was its appeal not to tears and sentimentality but to anger; and in this, KAPF writers had more affinity it their approach to the Sin kyŏnghyangp’a [new tendency] trend.325 The relative freedom granted to writers in the aftermath of the March First Movement of 1919 created a space for writers to express indignation and frustration at the inequalities they witnessed around them. Politically and non-politically affiliated writers alike viewed literature as an important tool in the edification of readers for the purpose of shaping the public’s awareness of the inequalities inherent in the social and political system. In children’s literature, this political awareness and intense engagement with reality meant a strong aversion to what  320 Kim and Yoon 408. 321 Kim and Yoon 409. For more on the position of realism in Korean literature, see Park Sunyoung (2006). 322 Kim and Yoon 412. 323 “KAPF literature was much more attentive to the task of describing the suffering that resulted from historical and social conditions than it was to pursuing artistic perfection or examining existential issues” (Kim and Yoon 422). 324 Perry (2006) 286. 325 Perry (2006) explains that the earliest encounters between Marxism and modern fiction in Korea found expression in a literary trend known as Sin kyŏnghyangp’a [new tendency] literature, which became distinctive in the mid-20s. Literature of this trend commonly polarized “the lives of the haves and have-nots and often found resolution in arson or in the deaths of women and children.” (295)  127 was seen to be a prevalent and destructive idealization and romanticization of the child. And as in Japan, proletarian writers for children in Korea played an important role in the development of ‘realistic’ writing that proposed to be more faithful to the plight of children under Japanese rule.326  4.4 Proletarian Magazines in Korea: Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn  The growth of children’s magazines beginning in the 1920s cannot be understood without a consideration of the publication policy and censorship regime of the colonial government.327 The growth of the commercial press after the March First Movement of 1919 was in fact, as noted by Michael Robinson (1984), a product of Japanese oppression that “provided a financial incentive for cooperation” as opposed to “suspension, seizure, or prison for publishers who attempted to continue the nationalist struggle.”328 After 1930 Robinson notes a “drop in censorship action” which he attributes to a “more pliable Korean stance toward Japanese  326 Brian Myers (1994), Jin-kyung Lee (2006) and Sam Perry (2007) write about leftist literature in the 1920s and 30s, but reach different conclusions. Myers’ opinion of KAPF writing in the 1920s and 30s is generally low, because he says it was not supported by a sincere political consciousness: “Most of what was written in these years was marked by the same ethnocentric pastoralism and anti-industrialism as contemporary Korean ‘bourgeois’ naturalism.” (17) Perry, however, lauds the efforts of the proletarian writers in Japan because, at the hand of proletarian writers, “children were becoming a new means by which progressive thinkers of all political persuasions were holding capitalist modernity up to condemnation in the mid 1920s” and because proletarian writers were more likely to arrive at “an understanding of the multiplicity of modern childhood experience.” (142) Jin-kyung Lee (2006) nuances the discussion of leftist writing in the 1930s by providing an analysis of the ways in which writers used universalist and intentional Marxist frameworks to provided a counterpoint to cultural nationalist construction of essentialized ethnicity. 327 See also the discussion of censorship in section 2.0.1. 328 Michael Robinson (1984) 338.  128 rule.”329 The Japanese censorship mechanism developed what Robinson calls a “dual standard” which “affected the development of nationalist ideology by totally suppressing radical and social revolutionary thought, yet tolerating, to a point, more moderate nationalist writing.”330 Robinson notes that in the mid-1920s, “the suppression of radical thought removed the discussion of socialism and other radical ideas from the Korean press… [and] removed [leftists] from public view in the ongoing ideological debate over the form and future of the Korean nation.”331 However, this fails to explain the publication of leftist children’s magazines with socialist content associated both directly and indirectly with corresponding socialist organizations.   Two examples of leftist magazines are Sinsonyŏn and Pyŏllara. Sinsonyŏn (新少年) was published between 1923 and 1934. Roughly 67 issues were published in that interim, and the magazine was subject to occasional closure due to censorship violations.332 And while Pyŏllara was not associated directly with the KAPF movement, the magazine was edited by prominent leftist writers such as Im Hwa333 and Pak Seyŏng334 and featured writings by dozens of prominent leftist writers.335 Published first in June of 1926, and running for roughly ten years (with interruptions due to censorship),336 Pyŏllara focused on enlightenment and education, but  329 Robinson (1984) 340. 330 Robinson 340. 331 Robinson 341. 332 Pak T’aeil (2002) 148-9. 333 Im Hwa (1908-1953)  appeared on the literary stage in 1927 as a poet and critic of proletarian sensibilities. He went to North Korea in 1947 where he was execuated in 1953. 334 Pak Seyŏng (1902-1989) was a poet born in Kyŏnggi Province. He studied in Shanghai, and became a famous leftist writer. He served as Pyŏllara’s editor; later, he was responsible for writing the national anthem of North Korea. 335 Ryu Tŏkche (2010) 309-10. 336 The findings discussed here are based on my examination of volumes 1930-4. The photocopies were generously given to me by Wŏn Chongch’an of Inha University in Korea,  129 its angle was ideologically leftist. Its mission statement was to “approach our poor friends (tongmu) with an affordably priced magazine”;337 in other words, it targeted the disenfranchised and economically disadvantaged colonized children of Korea. The cost of the magazine was a self-proclaimed “five chŏn, as opposed to the 10 chŏn that Ŏrini cost and the 15 of Sinsonyŏn,” and was, as such, a magazine dedicated to the propertyless children of Chosŏn.”338 With this, the contributors of Pyŏllara were addressing the failure of magazines such as Ŏrini to respond to the economic and social strife that children suffered under Japanese colonial rule. The contributors to Pyŏllara offered an alternative to the romanticized and idealized tongsim ideology that had ‘plagued’ the pages of Ŏrini and the ‘innocence myth’ that it propagated. The child construction (weak, vulnerable, sentimental) of Pang Chǒnghwan was seen to be complicit with the ideologies of colonial subjectivity propagated by the Japanese for the purpose of colonial control. And in 1930, when proletarian ideology had entered children’s culture and discourse (reflected in articles from the nation’s largest newspapers at the time), Pyŏllara’s ideological bent became most apparent.339  The degree of Pyŏllara’s activism is evident from the frequency of censorship of the later volumes; Ryu Tŏkche claims that the 1932 January volume had over 10,000 readers, including readers in Manchuria, Japan, the United States, and Cuba.340 Pyŏllara advocated an organization that went beyond children’s meetings or youth group activities: it supported the formation of an “international Marxist”341 children’s union,  and are not easily obtainable or, for that matter, readable in some cases, due to the deterioration of the originals. 337 Quoted in Ryu Tŏkche 308. 338 Ryu Tŏkche 308. 339 Ryu Tŏkche 315. 340 Ryu Tŏkche 326. 341 Jin-kyung Lee (2006) explains that the international Marxists imagined a “utopian space where ethno-national boundaries will already have been dissolved,” but was a framework in  130 and pronounced its intention to provide moral support to the workers in the factories and in the fields. The editors actively encouraged children to take an interest in and a political stance on the situation of exploited workers. The goal of this magazine was to provide children with the awareness that would encourage them to overcome and overthrow bourgeoisie control.  Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn were not, however, written only to be consumed as political propaganda. They were highly accessible and contained diverse content. Much like Ŏrini, they were written mostly in vernacular Korean with a few or no Chinese characters. When they were included, Chinese characters were usually in the title of the text and the author titles, and much less frequently in the body of the text. The magazines opened with a table of contents and included creative pieces (fiction, poetry, plays); illustrations (icon designs, comic strips); non-fiction (essays on science, social science, history, travel essays), translations and musical scores. But while an effort was made in these magazines to entertain the reader, the entertainment was not indulgent; the editors of and contributors to these magazines saw it as their responsibility to develop class consciousness in children. They were to do so by narrating “real life”: by publishing pieces that exposed children to the true evils created by colonial rule, including the hardships of workers and farmers, the suffering of due to extreme gaps between the rich and poor, and of course, the suffering of children too poor to attend school. As one of the towering figures of proletarian literature comments, the solutions to these grave social ills were the magazines themselves. Im Hwa wrote about the importance of children’s literature and the role that it must play in shaping the young generation. In his essay “Adong munhak munje e taehan 2-3 ŭi sagyŏn” [Some Personal Views on the Problem of  which some writers were able to address issues of racial hierarchy in relation to class and colonial capitalism (105).  131 Children’s Literature]342, Im first states that children’s literature is in need of reform more urgently than any other form of literature. Increasingly, says Im, literature is being used as teaching materials; but the content itself is growing more detached from and irrelevant to adult’s and, more particularly, children’s real lives. The problem, says Im, is that many children are excluded from mainstream culture and are kept ignorant. This is unfavorable considering the large and weighty role that children are expected to play in the future. Children’s great thirst for knowledge and the immeasurable influence exerted upon them by education must not be forgotten. This thirst occurs most intensely, says Im, in the period between birth and youth (ch’ŏngnyŏn’gi). This is when children are shaped as human beings, and also when children are most heavily influenced by literature and education. It is therefore the responsibility of the older generation to provide the proper infrastructure for the shaping of young people. This requires utmost care and preparation—nothing must be left to chance. Unfortunately, since the emergence of modern literature in Chosŏn, very few writers have dedicated themselves to the problem of children’s literature in Korea other than those visible in Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn, and there has been very little support of children’s literature within the larger literary community. Im demands that the larger literary community take an active interest in children’s literature and contribute to its shaping. Furthermore, children’s literature must help children understand themselves better. Children’s literature must be produced to reflect and answer to the different stages in children lives: their psychological, intellectual, and actual lived experiences that change with time. This literature must make them feel that it is written exclusively for them. All those pieces of literature that are not intentionally for children must be removed from these magazines. As a first step, the children’s works of the past must be reexamined. More  342 Pyŏllara (1934.2) 2-4.  132 importantly, Im insists that in order to establish a more authoritative critical voice, a standard theoretical, scientific approach must be applied to children’s literature. The criticism must be generous and sincere in order to guide children into being future leaders and thinkers.   Essays such as this one by Im Hwa were prevalent throughout the magazines, but some of the pieces were less didactic than others. In general, however, Pyŏllara and Sinsonyon were magazines that aimed to bestow class consciousness upon children. Most importantly, these magazines challenged the existing construction of the child. The child of Ch’oe Namsŏn’s Sonyŏn and Pang Chǒnghwan’s Ŏrini were mere manifestations of false class consciousness, meaning that they embodied the material and institutional processes in society—one that was being exploited by colonial capitalism, no less—and thus misled the people. If Sonyŏn’s child was the Sin Taehan [new Korea] child primed to turn his back on his past and to absorb modern knowledge, and if Ŏrini’s tongsim child was the vulnerable victim of parental and colonial abuse that needed both distraction and protection, then the proletarian child, the child of Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn, was an empowered child. Children were now fully aware and prepared to take action and rise up for the sake of the revolution. 4.5 Sites of Conflict The proletarian magazines Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn proposed, as noted above, to convey to children an understanding of the world around them in Marxists terms; in other words, to recognize that they were being exploited, to understand the mechanism behind this exploitation, and to then be angry enough to do something about it. It was convenient, then, for many writers to choose appropriate settings for the dramatization of the exploitation. Some of these sites included the school, the factory, and the sea. The first is obvious: education was the banner of success and deemed indispensable for the nation’s progress, but it had become a commodity to  133 be purchased only by those with means (means that were obtained through exploitation). Factories, too, were ideal sites for the purposes of dramatizing exploitation, since they were by definition an intersection between the capitalist owners of the mode of production and the disenfranchised and exploited laborers. The sea emerges from the poetry and prose as another site, particularly in contrast with the sea images from Ch’oe Namsŏn’s Sonyŏn. In the imagination of the proletarian magazines, the sea inhabits an entirely different space. 4.5.1 School If the magazines from the previous two decades celebrated learning, or at least took it for granted, the proletarian magazines made school the poster child of their grievances. The fact of the matter was, of course, that many Chosŏn children were still unable to attend the presumably free, accessible and public education offered by the Japanese colonial government. The contributors to this magazine broached this topic as an issue of class, since it was only children of means who were able to attend school and pay the fees expected of them. Indeed, one of the ways in which writers illustrated the inherent inequality suffered by children in Korea was through the depiction of the lack of access of many children to education due to their family’s low income. The magazines Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn describe education as a commodity rather than as a state-sponsored institution whose purpose is to serve all children of Korea regardless of economic means or class. The discourse of enlightenment emphasized education and modern knowledge as the only means by which Chosŏn might have any hope of progress. The value of education (or what ‘progress’ means) is not the subject of questioning per se; what is criticized is the commodification of education and its consequent availability only to those with access to the means of production.  134  The poem “Punhan pam” [angry night] by Yi Kuwŏl343 reads as follows:  Our school is a night school, Oemot’harŏnŭi. In rain or snow we are sturdy comrades But each day we fear illness.  Our school is a night school, Oemot’harŏnŭi. Teacher tells us we are bad, we have no money. We know, we know what is in our bellies.  Shall we push forward with clenched fists in this angry night? Let us show them how powerful we are. Let us fight bravely and let us be victorious.  The narrator attends night school, implying that he must work during the day. Despite the difficulties, he is clearly trying to pursue the goal of obtaining an education, and his passion for education is evident in his attendance through adverse weather. Still, the teacher is the enemy: he humiliates his students, dismissing them for being “bad” and having little money. But the narrator is not going to remain a passive victim, nor is he alone. Flanked by his “sturdy tongmu” comerades, the narrator proposes that they gather their strengths and fight their oppressors. And win. Im Hwa often portrayed disadvantaged children who lack the financial means to pay for education. The short prose piece “Chajang chajang” [Lullaby] is a snapshot of the life of young children who are charged with minding their younger siblings on a boat instead of attending school while their parents work. They are poor, and barely have the means to survive. They watch their peers dress in proper clothes and enjoy the privilege of attending school, and sing a  343 Pyŏllara (1930.11) 9.  135 sad song to their young siblings: “Sleep, baby, sleep/ grow big and strong/ grow powerful and scary”.344 4.5.2 Factory Many writers championed the factory worker—adult and child, male and female— and constructed him or her as the site of capitalist exploitation and the culmination of all that was wrong with the current state of affairs. In “Sangho ŭi kkum” [Sangho’s dream] by Kim Uch’ŏl,345 Sangho was once a top student who was forced to quit school and work at a factory. Sangho flees from his drunken father who is bent on beating him and runs off; before he realizes it he has arrived in his school. There he meets his old teacher, who flashes him a lukewarm smile, and his old elementary school rival (and much his inferior at school), Manbok. Manbok (which means “full of luck”) is the son of rich man Kim and now a high school student. Manbok asks Sangho about factory vacations, and this puzzles Sangho, who had never heard of such a thing; a bell wakes him from his reverie and he discovers that it had all been a dream. He is, in fact, in the factory and trapped in his own harsh reality. Sangho asks about vacations in the factory, but of course, no one has ever heard of such a thing. He returns home with his perpetually empty lunchbox, as dejected as ever. In “Abŏji wa ttal” [Father and daughter] by An Unp’a,346 a middle-aged man wearing tattered clothing walks listlessly through the neighborhood in an attempt to start some kind of business. He is ignored, and he then starts to worry not only about his inability to pay for his daughter’s school tuition but also about having enough money to buy something to eat. Meanwhile, his 15-year old daughter Poksuni (meaning lucky and pure) is at school and can  344 Pyŏllara (1930.7) 29. 345 Sinsonyŏn (1932.2) 44-48.  136 hardly concentrate from malnourishment. She is anxious that her father will not be able to make enough money to pay for her extra-curricular activities; and when she goes home, all she can think about is the daughter of the landlady, who gets new outfits made of special material. Poksuni has been orphaned by her mother, yet despite the hardships her father still urges her to continue her schooling. Poksuni tells her father that her teacher won’t let her graduate if she can’t pay her fees. Her father goes in search of odd jobs and gets himself a position in the home of a rich man, where he contemplates stealing. The social and economic gap between Poksuni and her father and the wealthy man’s house is astounding. And the “Kongjang ŏnni” [factory sister] by Pak Maeng347 narrates the miserable conditions of young girls enslaved in factories:  Our sister, factory sister, poor dear sister, Each morning, with the siren, She eats cold rice for breakfast and takes her lunch to the factory, Like a frog walking toward a snake.  Facing the poisonous factory owner, If she errs she’ll be struck. Our sister’s wages are barely 4 wŏn a month, But every mistake costs her money.  “Rŏsia ŭi kongjang” [Russian Factories]348 by Ku Chinhŭi explains that the Soviet Union is the only country in the world that exists and functions entirely for the sake its workers. He praises the 5-year plan, which has brought great results in the harvest. He gives a particular  346 Pyŏllara (1934.9) 16-22. 347 Pyŏllara (1930.11) 42. For more on the plight of the factory girls see Ruth Barraclough (2006), Theodore Yoo (2008) 95-126, and Janice Kim (2009). 348 Sinsonyŏn (1932.1, 12-14)  137 example of a factory in Stalingrad which, aside from its great productivity, also has decent working hours and rest periods for its workers. Ku describes in great detail the various heavy industries that are under development in the Soviet Union, including construction and automobile industries, and speaks with great admiration about their achievements. Such prose, poetry and political essays openly challenge the intense inequalities inherent in the capitalist (colonial) system. The claim that in the mid-1920s the suppression of radical thought removed the discussion of socialism and other radical ideas from the Korean press and removed leftists from public view349 does not hold here. These pieces were published, despite their outright challenges to the authorities and empowerment of their young readers. 4.5.3 Sea Sections 3.4.1 and 3.4.2 illustrated the central theme that the sea played in the imagery of the period of enlightenment in Korea. Ch’oe Namsŏn’s famous poem “From the Sea to the Boy” echoes Lord Byron’s narrative poem “Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage.” As Samuel Baker (2010) notes, sea imagery was central to the romantics’ construction of empire. The sea makes a comeback in the proletarian magazines, but with a twist. In the July 1930 volume of Pyŏllara there is a collection of four short prose pieces titled collectively “Musings about the Sea.”350 The contributors include Im Hwa, Yi Kiyŏng, Kim Yŏngp’al and Yun Kijŏng, all four of whom played central roles in the leftist movements in Korea and all four of whom ended up going North after 1945. Im Hwa’s piece, “Chajang chajang” [Lullaby] discussed above (“School”, 3.4.1), describes the quiet determination with which children, who cannot go to school, sing to their siblings while their parents are out on a  349 Robinson (1984) 341. 350 (1930.7) 28-9.  138 boat trying to make a living. The title of Yi Kiyŏng’s351 piece, “Ŏgiyŏch’a,” is an onomatopoeic poem that captures the effort it takes strapping, youthful oarsmen to throw their bodies in a passionate struggle against the waves. In another poem with an onomatopoeic title, “Tti tti tta ttara tta” by Kim Yŏngp’al,352 the sea’s waves conjure up images in the speaker’s mind of young soldiers (sonyŏn’gun) fighting the onslaught of waves with their oars. The seagulls remind him of fighter planes, their cries remind him of friendly trumpeting; and he ends his piece with a passionate call to the reader: “Ah, sea! Our sea! Tatatata—let us move forward! Hold hands and—ttattattatta!” And the prose piece by Yun Kijŏng, “P’ungdŏng p’ungdŏng” [Splish splash] recalls for the speaker the feats of the haenyŏ, the women divers on Cheju Island who dive deep into the sea all year to gather oysters and seaweed. He expresses his frustration at the Japanese fishing industries that have begun to interfere with these women diver’s livelihood. The prose pieces reflect an appropriation of sea imagery that departs from the romantic imagery of the discovery (and conquest) of the outside world. In these prose pieces, the sea is a metaphor of youth in its struggle against its obstacles: corruption, exploitation, colonial repression. For Im Hwa, the sea is a bitter reminder of the families of poor fishermen whose children attend school; for Yi Kiyŏng and Kim Yŏngp’al, the image of sea waves conjures up Korean youth struggling against repression; and Yun associates the sea with a symbol of victory of proletarian Korean women: the brave divers of Cheju who, far from being tenants, are in complete control of the means of production.  351 Yi Kiyŏng (1896-1984) studied in Tokyo and returned to Chosŏn in 1923 following the great earthquake. He penned many important leftist works (including Kohyang [Ancestral Home]) and continued writing after he moved North in 1945 where he had an illustrious career as a novelist. 352 (1904-?). Kim was a writer, actor, and broadcaster, and was active on the literary scene until his death in 1950. He wrote novels, plays and poetry. He went North after division and appears to have died during the Korean War.  139 4.6 Knowledge for Empowerment The importance of the acquisition of knowledge, much the centerpiece of the enlightenment period in Korea (see chapter one), was never doubted. Children’s magazines from 1908 and onward addressed issues of education both directly through didactic prose on the importance of education, or indirectly, through prose and poetry that narrate the consequences of receiving poor or not education. But in the magazines Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn, the precise purpose of knowledge is questioned, and modern (scientific or political) knowledge is replaced by the encouragement toward the pursuit of knowledge informed by a Marxist historical materialism. The knowledge that is conveyed to the young readers is done so with two explicit purposes. The first is to grant them class consciousness and debunk their false class consciousness which has thus far obstructed their ability to see the exploitative processes of the institutions around them. Class consciousness is granted both through non-fiction pieces that analyze and explain the way in which they are being exploited and the way that knowledge itself has been commodified, and through fictionalizing exploitation in order to add an emotional punch. This is also achieved by insisting on solidarity with other proletarian children struggling throughout the world.  The second purpose of the knowledge conveyed in Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn is to mobilize children’s indignation and create the explosive energy needed for revolution. Yi Kihun (2004a) notes the proliferation of discourses about breaking with the past; again, the purpose of this is not, as with Ch’oe Namsŏn, to be able to acquire modern knowledge for the purpose of progress, but in order to see the exploitation clearly and to be angry enough to start a revolution.     140 4.6.1 Class Consciousness Kim Pyŏngho published his essay on the society of bees353 in Pyŏllara between June and November of 1930, echoing the interest in bees featured in the work of one of the most prominent figures of Bolshevik Feminism, Alexandra Kollontai.354 Kollontai (1872-1952), famous for being the world’s very first female diplomat, “defended a vision of emancipation premised on equality, comradeship, and personal autonomy, where society would take responsibility for domestic labor while enabling individuals freely to express their sexuality.”355 Kollontai’s views on marriage and society were published in her Love of Worker Bees (1923), and portrayed the society and organization of bees in an extremely favorable light. Kim notes the intelligence, fairness, and the impeccable organization of bees that allows them to maintain order despite their great numbers. This is made possible by the equality and fairness that exists between members of this society. Kim also notes their readiness to sacrifice themselves for the protection of their society: their sting is vicious, but it also kills them.  Those who are unwilling to sacrifice themselves for the safety of the group promptly remove themselves from society and commit suicide so as not to create a burden for their fellow bees. Kim ends his series by stating that this exemplary society runs according to the same rules that govern the Soviet Union.356 Other openly political essays include “Wŏlgŭp iran muŏsinga”357 [What is a monthly wage?] by Song Yŏng.358 In this piece, Song Yong explains the significance of the monthly  353 Pyŏllara (1930.6) 30-32. 354 I am grateful to Vladimir Tikhonov for alerting me to this connection. 355 Sypnowich 287. 356 See also Tikhonov, “Images of Russia in the Soviet Union and Modern Korea” (2002). 357 Pyŏllara (1930.10) 7-10. 358 Song Yŏng (1903-1977) was a famous playwright. He participated in the very first socialist theatre group, Yŏmkunsa, and was later one of the representative KAPF  141 wage in Marxist terms and frames his argument through a description of the process of historical materialism: first, five or six thousand years ago, the concept of sak, or wage, did not exist. Though the organizations could not even be called ‘societies’, they also did not take advantage of each other, and worked very hard. Then, with time, people learned to divide labor, and a division was created between those who owned the modes of production and those who did not. Advances in science brought about the development of agriculture and industry, which stimulated the development of machines to help produce more food. At this time, however, society was divided, and the owners of the modes of production exploited the workers. In general, wages are given in a way that disadvantages the workers and benefits their employers. Salaries are so insignificant that people cannot survive on them: factory girls work hard to put together clothes of silk, but they themselves never get to wear them. In “Chiju wa sojagin” [Landowners and tenants]359, Song defines both ‘landowner’ and ‘tenant’ and explains that the landowner owns the land and means of production, while the tenant is the farmer or laborer that works the land without owning it and without access to the profit that it yields. Song gives a quick history lesson about the evolution from a hunter-gathering society to the discovery of agriculture and the realization of the value and importance of land. After this, says Song, people’s greed got in the way as they each carved out their own space, claiming land as their own. Land became occupied by landlords, who did less and less, and tenants, who worked more and more. Then Song goes on to explain the system by  playwrights. His plays were highly ideological, often portraying the exploitation of the working class at the hands of the wealthy. After division he organized the leftist theater group Chosŏn yŏn’gŭk kŏnsŏl ponbu, and then went north and headed its counterpart in North Korea. He was purged along with Han Sŏrya in 1960. 359 Pyŏllara (1931.8) 20-22.  142 which tenants work the land and pay their landlords, and details the way in which they are exploited on this land. This is what leads to poverty and hunger. 4.6.2 Solidarity and Revolution One of the important missions of the proletarian magazines was the creation of a strong community of support for children. As we saw in the discussion of the emergence of youth groups in chapter two, community building was crucial to supporting the collective resistance to exploitation both at the hands of the Japanese and the wealthy Korean landowners and factory owners. One of the ways in which to build a new community was through an emphasis on solidarity with other working-class children, both within Korea and without. Some, for example, encouraged building solidarity with children from other parts of the world. Kwŏn Hwan (1903-1954), a prominent leftist writer, wrote “Miguk ui Yŏng P’aionia” [The American Young Pioneers].360 In this essay, Kwŏn calls into question the notion that America is a rich and wealthy nation, and he points out that their wealth is supported by large factories with unhappy workers who raise underprivileged children. He then points out that while rich kids go to church and get to hear stories (tonghwa), poor kids go to vocational schools and learn practical life lessons. These Young Pioneers361 (differentiated from the bourgeois Boy Scouts) even have their own magazine, and they are organized and active; they  360 Sinsonyŏn (1932.7) 2-3. 361 The Young Pioneers were the youth groups associated with the Soviet Communist Party. See Raising Reds: The Young Pioneers, Radical Summer Camps, and Communist Political Culture in the United States by Paul Mishler (1999).  143 gather on May Day, wear red clothes and sing together of their aspirations to be just like their parent workers.362 Song Yŏng’s allegory “Korae” [Whale]363 tells of a whale living in the deep sea. As master of his domain, he swims around all day and enjoys the pleasures of the deep. He helps himself to whatever fish meets his fancy. But one day, the fish get together to decide what to do about this menace. They conclude that if they gather their strength, they can overcome the brute. Soon after, when the whale is swimming, the fish attack and kill him. The narrator’s voice then interferes and provides the rather clear moral of the story — together, the weak can overcome the strong. This allegory resonates with particular force because it conjures up the more familiar alternative in the famous Korean saying, “shrimp among whales” (korae ssaum esŏ saeu tŭng t’ŏjinda), in which shrimp are crushed. 4.6.3 Heros and Antiheros The inclusion of biographies was not new in the proletarian magazines; as we saw in section 1.5.1, Ch’oe Namsŏn’s Sonyŏn presented both photos and biographies of Western figures, known and admired for their political and military prowess. The choices of biographies are transparent indications of the values the editors believe to be important for emulation by children. This is true also in the proletarian magazines, except that these magazines judge past heros harshly, and replace them with new ones: the suffering factory workers, exploited children at school, and above all, Karl Marx.  362 On the leftist children’s writers in the US, see Julia Mickenberg’s excellent book Learning from the Left: Children's Literature, the Cold War, and Radical Politics in the United States (2006). 363 Pyŏllara (1930.7) 56-68.  144  Song Yŏng challenges the concept of heroism in “Yŏngung iyagi” [About heroes]364. Song addresses the young reader and asks, “Who is a hero? Is it someone of lofty position?” Song’s response to this rhetorical question is that until now, heroes were thought to be men of superior strength and ambition such as Napoleon, Bismarck, and other famous Korean and Chinese generals. These men, Song says, are no longer admired as they once were. This is because Napoleon, despite his great military achievements, ended up taking thousands of innocent lives in his rise to power; by the end of his life, he was a drunkard. Song Yŏng says that “all of our past heroes were like this,” and must be criticized. In “Maksŭ nŭn nugu inga” [Who is Marx?]365, Pak Yŏnghŭi explains that “Marx must enter your hearts like a beacon of light… He must not leave our daily life even for a moment.” Pak goes on to call upon readers to reflect on the world around them, asking them to recall all the people in the who are repressed, who cannot act or speak as they wish; who are exploited in their workplace and cannot, even after endless days’ work, live in a decent house or eat a decent meal. He then explains that Marx saw through the hypocrisy and exploitation, proclaiming, “Workers of the World, Unite” and startling the “capitalists and landowners.” Marx deepened his understanding of the plight of the exploited workers by experiencing their life in his own skin, and thus arrived at an understanding of the process by which workers everywhere can unite and resist. Despite his death, says Pak, workers everywhere are making his legacy come to life.    364 Pyŏllara (1931.6) 10-12. 365 Pyŏllara (1930.10) 4-6.  145 4.7 Empowerment for Action The proletarian writers offered an alternative construction of the child in the late 1920s that challenged the one that had been imagined by the Enlightenment- and Ch’ǒndogyo-inspired writers. As illustrated above, the kind of knowledge that they proposed was not the kind that reproduced the inequalities and exploitation inherent in the capitalist system, but the kind of knowledge that would awaken them to an understanding of these deep inconsistencies. But the proletarian discourse went one step further. The awakening that the proletarian writers proposed was not meant to induce a passive understanding but an active one that would lead to action and eventually to revolt and liberation. Two figures stand out for their prolific legacy: Yi Tonggyu and Yi Chuhong. While the first was doomed to anonymity until recently and the other rose to fame in South Korea, both men left an indelible mark on children’s literature through a range of genres that include wall novels, prose, essays and poetry.  Yi Tonggyu (1911-1952) made his debut as a writer of “Pyŏk sosŏl” or wall fiction: fiction that was short enough to be pasted on the walls of gathering places for factory workers and the unemployed.366 Yi wrote fiction and poetry for children, plays, and literary criticism. He was jailed for two years in 1934 for involvement in the famous “Chŏnju sakŏn” [Chonju incident] in which 23 members of a theater group were jailed, and after their release were forced to change their ideological convictions. This incident is also known for the role it played in the dispersion of the KAPF movement. Following his release from prison in 1935, Yi changed the  366 “Wall novels” existed in the Soviet Union from the mid-1920s, and Kelly (2002) notes that these stengazeta “referred to a home-made news-sheet produced by members of a Soviet enterprise or institution… and posted on noticeboards and display stands as well as directly on walls” (578). Yi’s first work of this kind was “Pŏng’ŏri” [Mute] and appeared in the magazine Adŭng 我等 [Us]	 in December 1931.  146 focus of his work to write about social conditions in a less direct manner, and his works examined the psychological state of women and intellectuals.  After liberation in 1945, Yi returned to his critical examination of the corruption of the landowners and social inequality created by the Japanese. He was particularly vocal about the corruption, nepotism, self-publicity and self-interest he witnessed among the intellectuals. He joined his other KAPF colleagues such as Yi Kiyŏng, Han Hyo, Song Yŏng, Yun Kich’ŏng, Pak Seyŏng, and Hong Ku to create the leftist literature organization Chosŏn p’ŭrollet’aria munhak tongmaeng immediately after liberation in 1945. As a member of this organization, he spoke out in editorials about the “problem of skills” reflected in the creative works, and urged writers to work toward techniques of social realism and other approaches which would break free of what he called the formulism of literature. He went North in 1946 and became a professor in the P’yŏngyang sabŏm taehak [P’yŏngyang Teachers’ College]. He served in the North Korean army as a writer and was killed in the Korean War. A collection of his works was published after his death in North Korea in 1956.367 Yi Tonggyu’s poetry and short stories for children appeared in Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn even before his official appearance on the literary stage.368 He was publicly active when it came to children’s rights, and Kim Mansŏk notes that in a 1932 editorial in the Chosŏn chungang ilbo Yi criticized the system of labor that employed children; lamented the fact that KAPF had no  367 See Kim Mansŏk (2008). According to Kim, Yi Tonggyu was widely forgotten until he wrote the first comprehensive review of his life and work in 2008. Yi Tonggyu’s scope as a write for children seems to be even larger than indicated in this article. 368 Yi Tonggyu’s children’s works appear months before Kim Mansŏk claims that Yi made his debut as a writer of “wall novels” in December of 1931.  147 youth division; and insisted that literary production must not end with reading, but must lead to awakening and action.369 Yi Tonggyu’s poetry focused on the conditions of poverty and exploitation of children. “Ŏrin namukkun” [Young Woodcutter],370 tells of a young boy who collects wood for a living; he does so in the harshest of weather. He is so hungry that the snowflakes look like flour; but of course, these snowflakes cannot possibly fill his empty stomach:  The river has frozen into a hard sheet of ice And even on days when the snow falls hard The young woodcutter treads up the mountain Small rack strapped to his side.  Snowflakes like rice flour, falling hard Can’t fill the boy’s tummy No matter how hard he works His empty tummy cannot be filled.  This particular poem does not provide a solution; rather it captures the painful moment of this boy’s existence, which lasts a lifetime in the poem. Other poems by Yi Tonggyu rile the reader into action, calling for solidarity and action. For example, note “Norae rŭl purŭja” [Let Us Sing]:”371  Our song boils the blood, it clenches our fists and grinds our teeth. Sing, tongmo, sing this powerful song, The future is ours, this is our world.  You work the machines in oil-drenched factories, Clutch the handle in your black hands, Let us sing our song with strength! Sing the song of the machines and handles.  369 Kim Mansŏk (2008) 193. 370 Pyŏllara (1934.1) 25. 371 Pyŏllara (1931.9) 37.  148  Our song is a powerful song, it steadies our weakened hearts, races our blood. Let us sing in loud, strong voices! The future is ours, this is our world.  “Let Us Sing” offers a solution of song and solidarity. The resistance imagery is much stronger in this poem: boiling blood, firm grips, loud voices broken out in song: it is with these that the factory children will conquer the world. “Pe rŭl simŏ” [Plant rice]372 takes this resistance a step further: Walgang talgang plant the hemp Spend all summer making it grow After autumn, cut it all down Finally to have a nice, full gut.  Take it to the landowner’s house Pay back your dues at the supervisor’s house. A bite from here, a bite from there and all that’s left is barely some chaff.  Should we boil it in this pot? Should we boil it in that? Or should we throw it at the greedy landowner And tell him where to shove it?  This poem describes the desperation felt after laboring in the fields for many months, and the joy and excitement at the thought of finally having a full tummy. But as the poet says, by the time the debts and dues are paid off, the leftovers are so meager that it is almost comical. The questions about how to cook these insignificant leftovers are heavily ironic, and the last line—which literally reads, “shall we throw it at him and tell him to eat it all?” carries overtones of tremendous frustration.  372 Pyŏllara (1932.1) 28.  149 Yi Tonggyu’s prose was also published in the proletarian magazines. Yi published monthly installments of readers for young children (Yu’nyŏn tokbon, 幼年讀本)373 including a two-page story about two sisters, Kŭmsun and Kŭmnye. Sixteen year-old Kŭmnye works as slave labor at a rich woman’s house, where she cooks and cleans in exchange for a mere pittance and basic nourishment. One day, when her seven year-old sister Kŭmsun goes to visit her older sister (much against the landlady’s wishes, since the younger sister is despised there), she overhears the landlady berating her sister for eating from one of the beef side dishes. Young Kŭmsun runs home and asks her mother: is it so terrible for Sister to eat that food, when all she does is slave at their house? Her mother is silent in response; the young girl is very, very angry. Yi ends the story here, leaving the girl’s indignation and her keen sense of injustice ringing in the ears of the reader. Indeed, one of the distinct features of Yi Tonggyu is the clarity with which he calls children to action. His works portray a certain reality that must have been close to the truth in many cases in the 1930s. But the anger and call for solidarity that resonates in some of his work indicates that children have the internal resources to resist their oppression.  Yi Chuhong (1906-1987) straddled both sides of the ideological divide, but, unlike Yi Tonggyu, went on to enjoy a successful career as a children’s write in South Korea in the postwar period. Yi Chuhong served both as the editor of Sinsonyŏn and as contributor to the magazine. His fiction often reflected the harsher realities of children, such as the short story “Uch’et’ong” [mailbox], in which a young girl comes to understand current events through the comings and goings of letters from her father in Japan; and “Kunbam” [Roasted chestnuts], a class-conscious story about a landowner’s son who is outsmarted by a peasant boy. In his longer fiction, Yi described the experience of poverty, highlighted the struggle in the countryside and  373 Sinsonyŏn (1932.7) 34-5.  150 of workers, and described the misdemeanors of the exploitative class. “Ch’ŏng’ŏ ppyŏdagwi”374 [Fish bones], for example, captures the plight of the landless peasants that are exploited by wealthy and heartless landowners. Sundŏgi’s family is a walking tragedy: his mother is sick, her illness exacerbated by the death of her darling and witty three-year-old child; his father turns taciturn and hopeless, and out of heartbreak ceases to attend to his farming; and Sundŏgi has pus-filled blisters all over his shoulders from sweeping the streets, a job for which he is not paid. When the landowner comes to scold Sundŏgi’s father, the boy’s father prostates himself before the landlord, discarding any sense of self-dignity, and this infuriates Sundŏgi. The boy’s invalid mothers manages to conjure up superhuman strength and serve the landowner fresh herring and rice; their starved son nearly chokes on his saliva, but his mother manages to calm his appetite, assuring him that there will be leftovers. When the dishes come back empty, the boy explodes in anger, his father beats him, and the boy’s wounds erupt in the room, staining it with yellow pus and red blood.375 The father apologizes to his son, but the boy immediately begs for forgiveness. Yet while the family members comfort each other, the boy feels his hand clenching into a fist and his teeth grinding in anger. The story entertains certain elements of melodrama, culminating with the tearful family embrace as the finale, but the boy’s sense of indignation and horror that he experiences at the sight of his parents surrendering indicates that this is not the end of the story. His anger has been aroused, and he will take revenge. In his work, Yi Chuhong manipulates his child characters to elucidate the social inequalities facing children in colonial Korea. Yi Chuhong’s children stare face to face with terrible injustices, but do not leave it at  374 Sinsonyŏn (1930.4) 3. 375 Jin-kyung Lee (2006) also addresses the presence of proletarian narratives that focus on the abject body and the physical manifestation of exploitation, and notes the wide variety of such instances in literature of the 1930s (119).  151 that: they join forces to overcome their situation, illustrating what Pak T’aeil calls a spirit of “enlightenment”.376 4.8 Conclusion The proletarian magazines for children emerged in the mid-1920s in response to the general disengagement of children’s print culture with colonial reality and the specific prevalence of the ‘myth of innocence’ or tongsimjuŭi, in children’s prose and poetry. With the rise of socialism in the early 1920s, opposing social discourses competed for hegemony, but also reflected the desire to find solutions and effect change in Chosŏn society. Children and youth were at the center of the discussions; nothing, after all, could be more crucial at this time than educating Chosŏn’s future leaders. Proletarian magazines seem to have been relatively uncensored sites where writers, poets, social activists and public intellectuals constructed the child in essays, fiction, allegories and poetry. The constructed child was still innocent, but not ignorant; pure, but not passive. This child was educated and informed about the evils of capitalism and exploitation. If he could not be educated in school, then he was educated in the streets; if not by teachers then by older peers; and if not through positive examples than through negative models. The knowledge conveyed to children in the proletarian magazines was less academic and more moral; less fiction and more political science. The tongsim of the early 1930s, as constructed by the leading proletarian writers of colonial Korea, was on the path toward obtaining class consciousness, and was also angry enough now to take the necessary action in order to effect change.  376 Pak T’aeil (2002) 163.  152 5  Sonyŏn and the Natural Child 5.1 Education, Publication and Censorship The magazine Sonyŏn published between 1937 and 1940 shared the same title as Ch’oe Namsŏn’s magazine published thirty years earlier, but the two share little else in common. The Sonyŏn of 1908 was published at the height of the enlightenment period, before official annexation, and shone a spotlight on children and youth as the future of Korea. The Sonyŏn of 1937 was published during a period of intensifying colonial repression and on the eve of the Sino-Japanese war, after Korea had been subjected to more than thirty years of colonial rule with no end in sight, and at a time when youth culture—indeed the child itself—had been a contested site of discourses about nation and progress for decades.  As Caprio (2009) demonstrates, the Japanese colonial cultural policies in Korea fluctuated throughout the colonial period, and it is impossible to tell the story of the children’s magazines without contextualizing their position vis-a-vis publication policies at the respective stages of colonial rule. It is important to remember that the external conditions that allowed for the contestation over the child—namely, the proliferation of socialism and publication of proletarian literature—came to an end by the mid-1930s. The silencing of the proletarian voices in children’s magazines heralded a new era of publication which reflected the concerns of a militarized society bent on accelerated assimilation of the Korean population.  The history of censorship, according to Mark Caprio, shows that while the period following the March First Movement (1919) saw a relaxation of publication, presumably motivated by the government-general’s desire to allow for “a forum through which [Koreans  153 could] voice their opinions on Japanese administrative practices,”377 the relative freedom of publication meant that critics of the Japanese assimilation policies could voice their opinions to a certain extent in Korean newspapers. Indeed, this would partially explain how Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn published politically leftist content with little interference by the censors. These magazines, however, were shut down by 1934. This coincided with a new phase of assimilation policy by the Japanese colonial government, which affected the content of children’s magazines and shaped the publication and content of Sonyŏn, which was published between 1937 until 1940. By 1940, the governor-general had closed down all major Korean newspapers in its effort to exert fuller control over Korean media in the context of the escalation of the Sino-Japanese War.  Mark Caprio notes that in the late 1930s and in the face of mounting crises on the Asian continent, Japan realized that the acceleration of assimilation was critical to the success of the integration of the Korean peninsula into the empire.378 In terms of education, Caprio notes a heightened frequency of the discussion over “civic education,” which meant, for example, a focus on legal (civic duties) and moral education (traditional responsibilities). The examples Caprio provides indicate that the practical curriculum included ceremonies through which school children had to perform their loyalty to Japan; the purpose of this curriculum was to “instill loyalty to the empire as a logical extension of familial piety.”379 Caprio reveals the details of two particularly interesting reports issued by the government-general in 1938. These reports spelled out the achievements made in the assimilation of Koreans, and also suggested further directions to pursue in this regard. Among  377 Caprio 174. 378 Caprio 141-2.  154 the achievements noted was the increase in frequency of visits to Japanese Shinto shrines, as well as an increased fluency of Korean children in Japanese or, as it was called, in kokugo or the national language, something that indicated higher rates of education and school attendance.380 The second of these reports, the “Counterplan Proposal,” argued that complete assimilation would be impossible if Koreans were provided with access to their culture and language. The recommendations targeted Korean education: schools should now focus on the cultivation of three principles: “clarification of the national polity, endurance of Naisen ittai,381 and discipline.”382  The blood ties between Korea and Japan were to be emphasized, and Japanese language acquisition was to be encouraged. Education had to “foster within Korea’s youth the ‘spirit of industry and patriotism… the instruction aimed to provide means for the Korean people to ‘rationalize their lifestyles and soften their [Korean] mannerisms.’”383 This included a recommendation to exercise more control (censorship) over Korean “documents, speech and behavior, resources, movies, and music that obstructed Naisen ittai.”384 Another part of this Counterplan Proposal was the discussion over how to prepare the Korean peninsula for war. In order to facilitate this preparation, Japan was “to increase the peninsula’s health facilities to handle wartime casualties.”385 In order to improve health conditions in Korea, for example, Koreans were urged to exercise and walk (rather than take public transportation). The rhetoric about health practices (including discipline in eating and  379 Caprio 144-5. 380 Caprio 145. 381 Naisen ittai, or Naesŏn ilch’e in Korean (內鮮一體) was one of the guiding principles and mantras of late colonial authority. Literally, “Japan and Korea as one body,” this slogan captured the assimilation policies that aimed to transform Koreans into (theoretically equal) Japanese subject. 382 Caprio 147. 383 Caprio 147. 384 Caprio 148.  155 physical exercise, dress, and overall frugality) was a part, says Caprio, of the larger discourse about general frugality (thus saving money and fuel) and the regulation of Koreans’ lives (for example, through group exercise to the radio).386 Following the urgency to expedite assimilation, changes were made in the classrooms, such that “civic education” was replaced with “national education.”387  As a part of this new educational philosophy, other changes were made to the school curriculum.388 Also, physical education changed so that a greater focus was placed on martial education; and Koreans needed to acquire Japanese to a more sophisticated level in order to serve the Japanese army with more efficiency. Education also targeted women, who were responsible for raising healthy babies and for educating them properly so as to allow for their success in school.389 The wartime period also put an end to the deliberation over language use in the colony. “Japanese language” Caprio says, “grew in dominance as Korean language mediums gradually disappeared.”390 By the late 1930s, the education system in Korea was manipulated completely to serve the purpose of mobilization, both materially, in the form of military draft, and spiritually, using rhetoric that encouraged all children to see themselves as a part of the greater Japanese empire.  Newspapers, magazines, and other commercial print culture played a critical supporting role in the dissemination of state ideology. As Caprio notes, the press (and by extension, print culture in general) was “instrumental in both instructing the people of the present circumstances that the empire faced (including wartime news), and instructing them on their special duties as  385 Caprio 149. 386 Caprio 149. 387 Caprio 153. 388 Caprio notes that the subject “Japanese history and geography” was changed into “history and geography” and that the Korean language was demoted to an elective subject. (153) 389 Caprio 154.  156 imperial subjects.”391 Not only was commercial print culture implicated, however; literature, too, was acknowledged for its important role in the shaping of the colonial subjects. In his examination of the emergence of the study of literature as a part of the education curriculum of late colonial Korea, Pak Yŏnggi (2008) shows how educators made reference to the importance of including literature study in schools already in 1910.392 In the 1930s, Chu Yosŏp393 argued that the study of literature was the mark of a more evolved education curriculum; literature, he explained, was important beyond the study of Korean literature: it must be viewed as a part of an arts education in general. However, as Pak points out, commercial magazines continued to publish creative fiction and poetry, particularly the poetic genre of sijo, at a time when school textbook excluded them completely. In school textbooks, (Japanese) folk tales and biographies of notable Japanese persons were included in the literature curriculum; and without exception, all school reading material was rhetorically geared toward assimilating Koreans into the Japanese colonial empire. How, then, did Korean writers respond to this climate of late colonial rule in commercial magazines? Did the magazines participate in the propagation of ideas of assimilation (for example, militarization and loyalty to the Japanese) or did they resist it in language and content? Or did they maintain a quiet third space in which they navigated through the social climate by publishing less socially engaged and more detached “entertaining” reading?  390 Caprio 159. 391 Caprio 156. 392 Pak Yŏnggi (2008) 42. 393 Chu (1902-1972) was an important fiction writer in Korea. He was also an important contributor to children’s magazines in the late colonial period and throughout the liberation space and postwar period. He published a critique of the education system in 1930, arguing that schools were still occupied more by Japanese than by Korean students, and that schools were not being built as fast as needed. He also noted the poor status of education of women (Caprio 176-7).  157  5.2 Sonyŏn   Figure 33 Boy with Dog The late colonial period saw the publication of several children’s magazines, including the magazine Sonyŏn. Sonyŏn was published by the newspaper Chosŏn ilbo [Chosŏn Daily] and  158 was edited by Yun Sŏkchung394 from 1937 to 1939. Sonyŏn placed a great emphasis on publishing content that was entertaining. As Yun says in the “letter from the editor” of the first issue published in 1937: “Children, take a break from your studies and come to this gentle and affectionate magazine; it will doubtlessly give you laughter. Please guide it wherever you wish to go.”395 Yun’s philosophy of entertainment is reflected in a rich diversity of both visual and textual content: his magazine carried illustrated short stories, poetry, journalism, cartoons, allegories, quizzes, mazes, lessons in magic, arts and crafts activities, and much more. Sonyŏn was distinctly different from the leftist magazines Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn. Its difference lay in the content, which was, at least on the surface, more frivolous, and in its visual layout, which was much more rich, detailed, and diverse. But similarly to the proletarian magazines, Sonyŏn, too, reflected the changing sociopolitical atmosphere within Korea and the shifts in Japanese assimilation and other cultural policies. While Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn reflected the general mood of social protest against corruption and the exploitation suffered by the colonial economy, Sonyŏn gave evidence of the now hegemonic rhetoric of late colonial Korea in its consumer economy, development of hobbies and pastimes, and militarism that echoed Japan’s involvement in the second Sino-Japanese war. Many of the writers who contributed to Sonyŏn were later labeled ch’inilp’a, or Japanese sympathizers; their contributions, some of which can be called explicit propaganda, show the extent to which they had internalized the wartime colonial rhetoric propagated by Japan and had accepted, for  394 Yun Sŏkchung (1911-2003) is one of Korean children’s literature’s household names. He was born in Seoul, and went to study journalism in Tokyo in 1942. He published poetry throughout his career in such venues as the proletarian magazine Sinsonyŏn. He took over the editorial position of Ŏrini soon after Pang Chǒnghwan’s death in 1933, and later went on to work as the editor of the later colonial magazine Sonyŏn and the liberation space magazine Sohaksaeng. 395 Sonyŏn (1937.4) 9.  159 example, their position as a proud member of Japan’s Greater East Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere. Kim Hwasŏn (2004a) argues that magazine publications and radio broadcasts focused on the education of children in a deep sense, the purpose being to shape not only their knowledge but their interior landscape. This rhetoric, which called for the preservation of children’s inherent joy and cheerfulness, says Kim, was part of a larger, regional discourse that participated in the discourse of the Greater East Asia Co-prosperity sphere. The way that the editors and writers of this magazine achieved this integration was to reach out to children and inspire them to become loyal, militarized servants of the Japanese emperor.396  5.3 Wartime Rhetoric: Text and Visuals From 1937 until its cancellation in 1940, the magazine Sonyŏn participated to a certain extent in the reproduction of militarized and assimilation rhetoric. Although military content was not overwhelming in the early issues, from 1938, an increased presence of war is visible on the pages of Sonyŏn. This is evident both in the text—more and more prose, poetry, and general essays relate in some way to the war—and in images. Stories such as “大旋風” [Taesŏnp’ung Whirlwind]397 by Kim Hyewŏn boast of the militaristic spirit through a positive portrayal of the aspiration of Korean youth to become patriotic subjects. Taesŏnp’ung tells the story of a boy who adopts the role of village protector after his father is drafted into the war.  He saves the lives of soldiers later in an act of bravery while acting in utmost filial devotion to his mother, whose illness he is also able to cure. The work is explicitly and unapologetically didactic. It reproduces the rhetoric aimed at integrating Korean children into the Japanese empire by creating a seamless identification between the protagonist and the war effort.  It proposes to  396 Kim Hwasŏn (2004a) 22-4.  160 encourage its young readers to embrace their part in mobilization on behalf of the Japanese army. The images in Sonyŏn include photographs, illustrations, and even advertisements that draw the reader’s attention and enrich his or her visual reference. For the most part, the illustrations maintain a general detachment from the horror of war by sanitizing the photos of pain and suffering, and emphasizing ‘cuteness’ (as in the figure 34),398 or scientific detail.  Figure 34 Salute Figure 35 from January 1938 captures the delight of the troops at seeing the friendly planes dropping all sorts of treats, including cigarettes, caramels and even a duck, as a token of thanks  397 Sonyŏn (1939.11) 19-25.  161 for their efforts. Pilot and soldiers wear friendly smiles, and billowy clouds indicate carefree skies.  Figure 35 Happy to See Planes  After 1938, the magazine Sonyŏn published letters from soldiers at the front who are self-proclaimed readers of the magazine. For example, O Myŏngbok writesfrom his service station in Manchuria in “戰線通信” [Chŏnson t’ongsin Letters from the front]399, in response to letters that he has received from readers. He says that he has translated Sonyŏn there on behalf of Koreans who could not read it; and that thanks to his translations, soldiers asked him to write to the magazine and give out their address so that they could receive and give letters as well. The 18-year old soldier describes his routine as a translator, and notes that he eats very well. He then goes on to describe a recent battle on Chinese ground, and once again appeals to the  398 Sonyŏn (1939.4) 7. 399 Sonyŏn (1939.4) 22-5.  162 magazines’ young readers to exchange letters with the soldiers. The photograph that he includes (figure 36) depicts soldiers (holding the Japanese flag) in a tension-filled pose, the drama of their movements enhanced by the diagonal separating ground from sky, and the rifles pointing forward:400  Figure 36 Tense Soldiers  The sections dedicated to science also shift away from astronomy and physics to the science of bombs, e.g. the sections “P’okt’an i toegi kkaji”401 [How to build a bomb] and “Paengnyŏn hu ŭi kongjung chŏn”402 [Air battles in the next century], complete with illustrations of futuristic weapons (figure 37) and “Pihaenggi ka nalgi kkaji,”403 [How to build fighter planes] (figure 38).  400 Sonyŏn (1939.4) 24. 401 (1939.2) 34. 402 (1939.4) 56-59. 403 (1939.6) 22-3.  163  Figure 37 Bombs     Figure 38 Planes Appearing also from 1939 are “Announcements from Behind the Lines” [Sonyŏn chŏnhu midam], which recount feats of bravery and struggle of children and soldiers at home and abroad. From July of 1939, the magazine also included a section called “Chŏnsŏn nyussŭ”404 [news from the warfront], which reported on the bravery of the volunteer Korean soldiers fighting with patriotism for the Japanese.405 The fact that the colonizers and colonized had been conflated is apparent also in the essay “Pon padŭl hit’ŭllŏ yugent’ŭ wa mussollini ch’ŏngsonyŏn tan”406 [Models to Follow: The Hitler-Jugend and Mussolini’s Youth Groups] which opens: “As you all know, Hitler and Mussolini are two of the greatest heroes alive today. Their countries of Germany and Italy are our allies.”  404 (1939.7) 71. 405 The glorification of death for the nation (or more precisely, for the Japanese emperor) was echoed also in the major literary magazines of this period: for example, in the article “Nihonjin no seishi kan” [The Japanese philosophy of Life and Death] by Nikaidō Shinjū, the author covers the discourse of death in Japan, discusses the virtue of dying for the emperor, and traces its history to ancient Japan. In this context, Ikeda (2009) points to the Japanese self-sacrificial spirit in art which “advocates dying as an ideal way of fighting” (108). 406 (1940.1) 58.  164 Perhaps the clearest evidence of the degree to which Sonyŏn participated in wartime rhetoric can be viewed in the advertisements on its pages. The advertisements first bear witness to a growth in consumerism and a purchasing public that would be swayed by such ads. See, for example, these two advertisements for cookies. The left one reads: “Delicious cookies: With every cookie that you eat, you feel strangely more energetic.” In figure 39 the Japanese boy-soldier in the background carries the sword while the boy in the foreground carries a Japanese flag and a beaming smile. On the bottom right of Figure 40 of the advertisement for “Morinaga’s Milk Caramels” are three young boys saluting by way of bearing witness to their friendship; they stand, from left to right, a Nazi, a Japanese in the centre and an Italian Fascist on the right.    Figure 39 Maraton     Figure 40 Fascists      While the sample illustrations and photographs shown above bear witness to the trend in Sonyŏn toward general detachment from the subject matter through a “cute” fetish, there is also evidence of a darkening in the illustrations. Illustrations such as those in figure 41 and 42  165 published in 1940 seem to point to an intensification both in the production and increasing tolerance of the reception of visual violence:     Figure 41 Ax     Figure 42 Punch There was also a general severity in tone of some of the non-fiction pieces, indicating that, despite some of the lighter content, the magazine was still viewed as a pulpit of sorts from which to lecture to children about proper conduct. Yi Kwangsu, for example, published his work in several issues of Sonyŏn, where he wrote mostly didactic essays about manners. In the first issue of Sonyŏn from 1937, his writing appears next to a serious photograph of himself and under the title “Thank you.”407 “Always be grateful,” he says: “When you eat, think about the sweating farmers that worked to harvest your rice and be grateful to them…. If you wear silk, think about the hard work of the silkworms; if you wear cotton, think about the cotton harvesters. If you pull a thread, think about the suffering factory workers, breathing foul air in inhuman factory conditions. Be grateful to the sky and earth as well; and above all, be grateful  407 (1937.1) 26-8.  166 to your country408 for its generous bestowal of language and script, for its laws that make our lives comfortable, and be grateful to your teachers and guides, be they the Buddha, Confucius, or Jesus.” Being ungrateful, says Yi, is tantamount to a crime. In another section “On Blame”409 he writes,  “Children, never blame others for anything, not even if you are insulted. Always say to yourself, ‘it is my fault.’ Because it is always our fault. If you are hated by others, it is your fault.” Yi then continues to use religious rhetoric, saying that God sees everything and keeps a record of everything; he is like a banker, keeping tabs on your good deeds, and allowing you to ‘withdraw’ only the amounts that you have ‘deposited’. He turns to the authority of the Buddha as well, quoting the Buddha in saying that a gentle heart is repaid with happiness. He finally appeals to Confucian rhetoric and insists that virtue is the guiding principle according to the sages, whose wise words are guided by the righteousness of heaven, whose laws are unchanging. 5.3.1 War is Child’s Play One of the ways in which Sonyŏn reproduced colonial rhetoric is through the aestheticization of violence by presenting it as harmless child’s play. Poetry and prose portrayed children at (war) play, suggesting that it is both natural and, to a certain extent, harmless. The poem, “Aegi pyŏngjŏng” [baby soldier]410 for example, looks upon this want-to-be soldier with great affection and humor:  A six year old baby is a soldier A soldier at war with a chicken   408 It is not clear if he means Japan or Korea in this instance. 409 (1937.10) 38-41. 410 Han P’aryŏng, Sonyŏn (1940.7), 63.  167 A bowl on his head Bottle cap decorating his breast A wooden poker is his sword.  He comes after the chicken, Toy rifle aimed high, In hot pursuit of his enemy.  He hides in the corner of the stone fence Bang! Bang! Bang! He shoots at the chicken.  A six year old baby is a soldier A soldier at war with a chicken.  Another short piece by Yi Kujo, “Pyŏngjŏng nori” [Playing War]411 describes children at war play. The story opens with a delightful description of the boys’ lively imagination:  Three boys were playing in the yard. The first boy broke off a piece of sorghum straw and balanced it on his shoulder. The moment it touched his shoulder it became a rifle. “What do you say about my rifle? I’m a soldier, a soldier I tell ya!” Gun on shoulder, the soldier puffed his chest out with pride. The second boy broke off a piece of sorghum straw and attached it to his left hip. The moment it touched his hip it became a sword. “What do you say about my sword? I’m an officer, an officer I tell ya!” Sword at his side, the officer puffed his chest out with pride. Now that the game was on, the third child could not simply sit there.  So he broke off a piece of sorghum straw. He broke it off and mounted it. “What do you say about my horse? I’m a general, a general I tell ya!” The mounted general puffed his chest out with pride. The boys romp around until they find their first “victim,” a girl named Makpuni who unwittingly interrupts their play. They threaten her with their “gun,” “sword,” and “horse” and frighten her terribly, yet the narrative describes their antics in a rather detached way without any sense of urgency. Their second victim, Pukchegi, gets more involved in the game: they threaten  168 him and make him submit to their authority by turning him into a human horse. They finally accept him into their ranks after he has withstood their test, and the story ends when the mounted general, now supported by two soldiers and his officer, gives the command to another approaching boy. The narrative voice seems sympathetic toward the three troublemakers.  The illustration that accompany this story (figure 43) depicts the young boys, drawn in round and robust lines, marching with their heads held high with pride, and their faces without any malicious expressions, even when the boys humiliate Pukchegi:       Figure 43 Child’s Play  The drawings express a deep sympathy for their subject matter and obscure the real war taking place in the adult world. Their antics seem to suggest that all who are outside the army are worthy of healthy mockery, and that girls have no place in this system. The humiliation and exclusion in this piece are depicted rather playfully, and the hierarchy that the boys adopt appears as a completely natural part of boy’s play. 5.3.2 Discipline through Hygiene, Health, Exercise and Frugality Todd Henry (2005) demonstrates of the connection between control and sanitation in colonial discourse already in the first decade of the twentieth century; yet the subject of hygiene, health,  411 Sonyŏn (1940.12) 46.  169 and exercise412 does not seem to occupy as central a position in children’s magazines until Sonyŏn in 1937. The obsession with discipline of the mind and body becomes central particularly with the intensification of the war effort. The rhetoric of militarization is apparent in such poems and illustrations as the poem “Narani narani”413 [Side by Side in a straight line, figure 38] by Pak Yŏngjong. Kim Hwasŏn (2004a) notes that this rhythmic poem was broadcast on the radio, and that children would line up and march to it at school.  Figure 44 Side by Side   Ring ring ring goes the morning school bell Wŏlsŏng Elementary, grades one and two. It is gym time for grades one and two.  In a straight line wearing white hats In a straight line wearing red hats In a straight, straight line, standing side by side In a strait line we circle the school grounds.   412 On colonialism and discipline, see, for example, Pierce and Rao (2006), Mills and Sen (2004). 413 Sonyŏn (1939.3) 7.  170 In a straight line fly the ducks, too In a straight, straight line standing side by side In a straight line we circle the school grounds.  In a straight line the sunflowers, too In a straight, straight line standing side by side In a straight line we go round and round.  The emphasis in this poem in on highly choreographed order and on physical discipline that facilitates the control of young Korean bodies and minds for the purpose of creating obedient Japanese subjects. The illustration of this poem reflects the discipline: the children are standing straight, their arms at their sides, and toward the end of the line on the left they are barely distinguishable one from another. Caprio notes that newspapers advertisements changed in the late 1930s, moving away from a focus on beauty products to health products. These included those that “would strengthen children” such as those that “would increase a child’s appetite and lessen any fatigue they might experience from study and exercise.”414 The preoccupation with children’s physical exercise, proper posture, and hygiene appears in essays and illustrations (figure 45). In a section titled “Sonyŏn ch’eyukkwan”415 [Gym time], exercise is encouraged through rope-jumping, good hygiene (cleaning the floors with a rag) and good study habits (maintaining proper posture).  414 Caprio 157. 415 Sonyŏn (1937.4) 56.  171        Figure 45 Proper Pose   Economic frugality is also emphasized in the context of war, as the authorities call upon each individual to do her share of saving for the benefit of the country. One announcement calls out in three slogans to cut down on New Year’s celebration spending for the sake of the nation. Now is the time, it reads, to gather our wits and cut down on the traditional presentations of food and clothing for the new year. Material goods should be volunteered for the use of the nation. Snacking must stop; and every penny must be put away for savings for the home and the nation.           172 5.3.3 The Natural Child        Figure 46 Leaf Child One of the distinct features of the construction of the child in the magazine Sonyŏn is the depiction of the “natural child,” particularly in poetry. The child is depicted as an integral part of nature, as in this opening page: it is not clear where the leaf ends and the child begins, or vice versa. This view has its roots in the tongsim construct of the child which harkens back to the early 1920s, which insisted that the child was pure, angelic and perfectly innocent and vulnerable, and therefore in need of protection. In the late colonial period, however, this construction has different consequences.  The image of child in nature played a complicit role in advancing the militarized ideology of late colonial Korea: since children are organic, they are  173 perfectly pliable for their moral and social (re)forming. The beautiful child in figure 46 is unharmed by late colonial policies; on the contrary, this child thrives and is flourishing.  This opening image of the June issue of 1940 captures the tone of much of the children’s poetry. Note, for example, the poem “Dewdrops” [Isŭl]416 by Yun Sŏkchung: Dewdrops. Dewdrops descend each night Slumber in the grass and are gone.  Dewdrops, The sun has not risen, So they sleep on.  And just so that they will not wake, The wind blows ever so gently, And the birds glide by in silence.  Nature in this poem is anthropomorphized. The dewdrops descend onto the world and, when the sun is slow in rising, they indulge in lazy slumber. The wind and birds, sensitive to their precious presence, take care not to wake them. The dewdrops here are treated as small children, with nature being attentive and caring to their needs. This attentiveness toward nature is realized also in the poem “Daytime” [Taenat]417 by Yun Sŏkchung.   His hands grab at smoke, But no matter how hard they try, the smoke is not to be caught.  His feet stomp on his shadow, But no matter how hard they try, the shadow is not to be trod upon.  It’s a boring morning.  The child takes the butterfly net And is off to catch dragonflies.  416 Sonyŏn (1940.5) 38-9. 417 Sonyŏn (1940.3) 52.  174  The narrator in this poem looks affectionately upon this child, and both admires and pokes fun at his senseless activities. He tries to grab at smoke, to no avail; he wants to step on his shadow, but fails; and now he is on his way to catch dragonflies. The narrator doesn’t seem to have much confidence in the child’s future attempts, either, but rather admires the child for his aspirations and hopes. The illustration (figure 47), too, pictures the child walking with energy and optimism toward the dragonflies in the background. They are the symbols of his aspiration, which he has no thought of giving up.   Figure 47 Fireflies  Another poem by Yi Wŏnsu 418(1912-1981), “Lullaby” [Chajang norae],419 conveys the perfect harmony between child and nature:   Sleep, child, go to sleep. Mr. Sun is off to bed behind the mountain, the hills and fields are sound asleep, sound asleep under a dark blanket.   418 Yi published his first poem in Pang Chǒnghwan’s magazine Ŏrini in 1925. He straddled both sides of the ideological divide, showing socialist tendencies while also publishing in pro-Japanese magazines. He went on to have an illustrious career as the editor of the magazine Sonyŏn segye [Girl’s world] and as a children’s poet and writer in South Korea. 419 Sonyŏn (1940.7) 44-45.  175 Sleep, child, go to sleep. The deer are sleeping in the hills, and in the branches of the trees the birds are sleeping, too, their heads drooping with sleep.  Sleep, child, go to sleep. If you sleep, they say he’ll come, round Mr. Moon. Underneath your sleeping head He will bring with him dreams of the moon.  Hush, hush dear child. Child, go to sleep.  In this poem, a mother is putting her child to sleep under a looming, full moon. She calms him with images of nature which, she assures him, will keep him company in his sleep. Child and nature are joined in their journey.  Some voices in Sonyŏn complicate the idyllic child-nature image by providing hints of less-than-idyllic realities of children in late colonial Korea. The poem Poya nenneyo420 by Yi Wŏnsu is an intimate portrait of a young girl trying to put her crying sibling to sleep by singing Poya nenneyo, poya nenneyo. She continues: Kwinama, kwinama,  Where do you live? Is it beyond that mountain? Do you have a mother and father?  The west mountain, lined with trees, Grows red, red with the light of the setting sun  The light of the setting sun is in your eyes, Kwinama.  The rhetorical voice of the narrator begging for news of the baby’s mother and father hint at a more heartbreaking reality that exists beyond the lines of the poem. The poem’s sad undertones, however, are softened by the illustration (figure 48) of this poem, which depicts a young girl  420 Sonyŏn (1938.10) 40-1.  176 with rosy cheeks looking quietly and calmingly at her baby beyond her long eyelashes. The girl’s teardrop-shaped face, button nose and red lips rather detracts from the sadness of the song by evoking an idealization of cute-fetish.          Figure 48 Kwinama   Another of Yi Wŏnsu’s poems, “Namu kan ŏnni”421 [Sister who has gone to cut wood] is an appeal by a young girl to the sun to shine just a bit longer on her older sister who has gone out in the middle of winter gathering wood. As in other poems, the privileged relationship between child and nature allows for an open path of communication between them; however, in in the poem, the appeal reveals a tragic reality in which a child must work in the freezing mountain, perhaps because her parents are unable to do so or because they do not have money to pay for her schooling:   421 Sonyŏn (1940.10) 12-3.  177  Even on this cold day, Ŏnni has gone to cut wood, an A-frame on her back. She went to cut wood, blowing into her freezing hands.  The icy winds Blow and blow The valley, the brook Are frozen solid through. The valley cannot even complain about the cold.  Hey, Sun! Floating up high in the sky! Come down a bit closer And shine down on ŏnni cutting wood.  “Oppa ŭi chajŏn’gŏ” [Brother’s bicycle],422 also by Yi Wŏnsu, is told in the voice of a young girl helping her older brother learn to ride his bicycle. The two are practicing in the schoolyard, and the younger sister is desperately trying to steady him so that he can keep his balance. The playful poem, set in the romantic light of the moon and depicting a harmonic relationship between the siblings, changes somewhat in the last stanza:  Brother can’t go to school. Since yesterday he started to work as an assistant. He is learning to ride his bike, he says. So that he can run his errands as fast as a flying arrow.  The poem provides the reader with a glimpse of the dire situation in which, as in the previous poem, young children are forced to quit school and work. The illustration, however (figure 49), glosses over the more tragic element of this story.  422 Sonyŏn (1937.5) 18-19.  178        Figure 49 Bicycle While there is some indication of their poverty, represented by the patch on his left pant leg, the round faces and lack of realism in their expression contributes to the general aestheticization and idealization of family harmony. The appearance of the conflation of the natural child and her environment seems particularly significant in late colonial Korea.  One way of reading the conflation of child and nature is through one common trope of late colonial Korea: the hyangt’osaek, or local color, which, as Poole points out,423 alludes to the way in which images of rural countryside, women and children — “exoticised rurality”—are aestheticized in order “to stabilize the representation of Korea as a part or a region of the greater imperial realm.” The implications of propagating images of idealized childhood, particularly in the increasingly militarized mood of late colonial Korea, lie beyond a desire for escapism. The utopian vision of child and nature can be interpreted as, perhaps unwittingly, contributing to the colonial project that infantilizes and objectifies the child, thus eliminating the undeniable hardships and potential confrontations that might arise from a more complicated depiction.   179 5.4 Voices of Contention Given the intense militarization of the late 1930s and the strict censorship and control exercised by the colonial government, it is not surprising that children’s magazines became ripe sites for the reproduction and manipulation of hegemonic discourse. What is particularly notable, however, is that among the voices of the colonial state, there are other voices to be found in the magazine that have not been explored in scholarship: voices of contention. While Sonyŏn was published in the late colonial period and is considered to be largely a voice of the Japanese sympathizers (Kim Hwasŏn (2004a); Pak Yŏnggi (2008)), the magazine played host, in fact, to a wide range of voices, including those of prominent proletarian writers. While their essays in this magazine appear to be devoid of any explicit ideological tendency, they do exude a spirit of resistance to authority that was such a prominent feature of their earlier pieces published in Pyŏllara and Sinsonyŏn. Sonyŏn published among its pages the personal essays of the most prominent literary figures of colonial Korea from across the entire ideological spectrum. Every few issues, Sonyŏn dedicated a space for these famous men and women to reflect upon their childhood and convey ‘words of wisdom’ to the young readers of the magazine. These writers included An Hoenam,424 Yi Kiyŏng, Song Yŏng and Paek Sinae.425 Many of their personal essays, however, are simply affectionate recollections of their past. Yi Kiyŏng, for example, looks back to his childhood and recalls how badly he looked forward to New Year’s in order to get one year older and be treated  423 “Late colonial Modernism and the Desire for Renewal,” Andre Schmid ed., Korea Under Japanese Colonialism (forthcoming). 424 An (1910-?), one of Korea’s famous wŏlbuk writers who went north, appeared on the literary scene first in 1931. He fostered close working and personal relationships with many of the leftist writers of his time, including Yi T’aejun and Pak T’aewŏn.  180 as an adult. Paek Sinae recalls how much she looked forward to getting a year older because her father would not let her read books until she was of appropriate age; and An Hoenam recalls the joys of playing a pretend game of the famous Chinese novel “The Three Kingdoms”, a game in which each of his friends chose a character with which to identify.426 Song Yŏng’s contributions in Sonyŏn are not explicitly didactic; rather they are anecdotal. For example, he reveals the details about a brush with death when he was almost run over by a train.427 In another personal essay, however, Song Yŏng tells a story from his childhood: he hated school, he recalls, yet his parents forced him to go, telling the teacher to take extra care to make sure that their son didn’t escape. Song Yŏng recalls how this hateful teacher turned against one of the students and beat him mercilessly, at which point Song Yŏng seized the opportunity, claimed that he had to pee, and rushed to the outhouse; from there, he says, he escaped through a hole in the wall, saving his calves from a rough beating.428  The tone with which the story is delivered is sincere and quite removed from the cororatist lecture delivered by Yi Kwangsu in the first issue of Sonyŏn in 1937.429 Some hints of resistance can be detected in the illustrations of Sonyŏn. One of the more explicit examples of this is the “Kŭrim soktamjip” [illustrated proverbs] series. Among the eight examples is one outstanding example from February 1938 (figure 50):  425 Paek (1908-1939) was one of Chosŏn’s famous women writers who appeared on the literary scene in 1928. 426 Sonyŏn (1937.12) 24. 427 Sonyŏn (1938.3) 17. 428 Sonyŏn (1937.4) 53. 429 See discussion in section 4.3.  181  Figure 50 Soldier Second from the bottom on the right hand side is the saying, “Once one’s sword is in another’s sheath, it is difficult to reclaim.” The illustration portrays a Japanese soldier standing cold and stiff, sword placed firmly in sheath. It can be read as an intentional reference to Korea’s sovereignty which, now firmly placed in the grasp of the Japanese, will not easily be recovered.  Other pieces throughout the magazine share overtones with those more resistant pieces by socialist writers in the 1930s. The difficulty of children in continuing their education during the late colonial period is addressed also in non-fiction pieces like one published in 1938 by Sin  182 Yŏngch’ŏl.430 Sin notes that the month of March marks the beginning of a new school term, and Sin congratulates the students who successfully completed their primary schooling (either four or six years) and who, with graduation, must be “singing like the birds and dancing like the butterflies.”431 However, Sin also points out that many young friends are not privileged to continue with their schooling, noting that only one in ten children will continue with their education, while the rest will either help at home or be forced to join the labor force. But there is no need to lose heart, says Sin; one can easily continue one’s studies by engaging in self-study. Many great men and women engaged in self-study, as attested to by western and eastern biographies. Our culture has come a long way, says Sin; it used to be nearly impossible to get your hands on books or to find good teachers; but conditions now have so improved that newspapers reach even the most secluded parts of Korea, and graduates of high school and postsecondary schools can be found everywhere. These graduates, he assures his readers, can certainly answer any questions. Still, Sin reminds the young readers that one must work very hard to acquire knowledge; that ages ago, people had to withstand poverty and all sorts of difficulties, and that the only way they (and children today, by extension) were able to achieve knowledge was through tremendous work and dedication. Those children who are forced to embark on the path of self-study, says Sin, are not privileged enough, say, to receive money from their parents and study at someone else’s expense. But the road of self-study and of self-motivated exploration will lead to great discoveries that cannot be taken away. We live in times that require practical thinking and action, says Sin; and there is no shame in grabbing farming tools, or books, and getting dirty in the process.  430 Sin was at one time the editor-in-chief of Ŏrini. 431 Sonyŏn (1938.3) 36-9.  183  The most significant voice of contention in late colonial Korea is undoubtedly the voice of its most talented and inspiring (mostly children’s) writer of the colonial period: Hyŏn Tŏk (1909-?). It was, perhaps, an unlikely venue for his work, but Sonyŏn published Hyŏn’s short stories from August of 1938 until the cessation of the magazine in 1940. Despite his widely acknowledged talent, Hyŏn was doomed to anonymity in South Korea until recently because of his short career, his relatively limited number of works and the fact of his wŏlbuk, or defection to North Korea. Hyŏn’s works attest to a rich imagination, poetic expression, and a profound sense of identification with children that lack any overtones of patronizing judgment. His intimate and sincere voice acquired an even more striking presence in Sonyŏn because of its appearance at end of the colonial period. His resonant voice succeeded to be socially engaged while avoiding the traps of didacticism and judgmental condescension. He spoke from a place of deep affection and sincere sympathy for his child characters, and wrote with a masterful subtlety that has rarely been seen among Korean writers.  Hyǒn Tǒk was born in 1909 into a family that had once been quite prominent but had lost its riches due to his father’s poor management skills. He graduated from middle school and attended high school for only one year before his financial situation prevented him from continuing his studies. This much prepared him, as Wǒn Chongch’an (2005) notes, to develop feelings of sympathy and affinity that drove him closer to the approach of KAPF.432  Hyǒn’s first debut took place with one of his short stories that won first prize in a newspaper competition in 1927; he was seventeen at the time. His official appearance on the literary scene came several years later, in 1932.433  432 Wǒn Chongch’an (2005) 60-70. 433 It was apparently Hyŏn’s friendship with writer Kim Yujŏng that changed Hyŏn’s life and motivated him to become a writer Wǒn Chongch’an (2005) 75-6.  184 It was only in 1938, however, that Hyǒn entered the literary scene with full force with his adult novel Namsaengi, which was published serially in the newspaper Chosǒn Ilbo. Between his publication of Namsaengi and his last publication in South Korea, dated 1941, Hyǒn wrote nine short stories, 37 children’s stories, 10 young-adult novels, and two radio-broadcast scripts.434 Hyǒn’s friendship with Kim Yujǒng (1908-1937) also brought him closer to the organization of the Kuinhoe,435 where he became acquainted with An Hoenam436 and other members. After liberation in 1945, he accepted a leadership position in the leftist literary organization, the Chosŏn Munhakka Tongmaeng, and went North with his family during the Korean War. But he was not an active member of KAPF, nor was he politically active in any noteworthy way.437 He continued his activity in North Korea until 1951, but was silent thereafter until 1961. At that time, he wrote stories that contained no trace of the kind of writing he had done before the war. Hyǒn was purged along with Han Sǒrya in 1962.438 Hyǒn's body of work is of central significance not only because of its artistic merit but also because of its appearance in the magazine Sonyǒn during an increasingly militarized period of accelerated assimilation initiated by the Japanese colonial government. As seen above, war news and militarized culture was quite conspicuous throughout Sonyǒn and was presented as the only reality. The first appearance of Hyǒn comes in 1938, in a work titled “Hanŭl ŭn  434 Wǒn Chongch’an (2005) 82. 435 The Kuinhoe, or Group of Nine, was created in August of 1933. It represented a form of a proletarian counter-group to KAPF that differentiated itself by virtue of its lack of political affiliation. Members of this group include Chŏng Chiyong, Yi T’aejun, Pak T’aewŏn, Yi Sang and Kim Yujŏng.  See Wǒn Chongch’an (2006), “Kuinhoe munin tŭl ŭi adongmunhak” [Children’s Literature of the Group of Nine]. 436 An Hoenam was particularly enthusiastic about Hyŏn’s work, and greatly praised his novel Namsaeng’i. Hyŏn’s work was also widely acknowledged by Im Hwa, Kim Namch’ŏn and Paek Ch’ŏl. Wǒn Chongch’an (2005) 79-82. 437 Pak Yŏnggi 105-6. 438 Yi Kyŏngjae 496  185 malkkǒtman” [Although the sky is clear….] (see Appendix B).439 This short story examines the psychological workings of a young boy, Mun’gi, who is thrown into a state of confusion when the butcher accidentally gives the boy more change than he owed him. Mun’gi is distraught, because he feels guilty for having accepted the change, yet he is also unsure of what the right change should have been. On his way home he meets Sumani, who encourages Mun’gi to enjoy the unexpected gift; the two celebrate in a day on the streets. They buy a ball and binoculars, go to the movies, and even think up a business scheme that will generate revenue on a regular basis. When the ball and binoculars are discovered by Mun’gi’s uncle and guardian, however, his uncle reminds Mun’gi of his responsibility to work hard in school and become a good person. From then on, Mun’gi’s emotional state deteriorates as he desperately tries to assuage his guilt but is unable to confess his crime.440 At first glance, the story appears to be a didactic story about taking responsibility and the consequences of lying. But the writer’s skill layers the story in a way that communicates greater details and provides insight into the social structure surrounding the boys’ world. Mun’gi may live in material comfort, but the house is not his own — his mother has died, and he was abandoned by his father. It is money, in fact, which sends Mun’gi on a downward spin: he is thrown into confusion when the money enters his pockets, and he goes on a wild spending spree, but then has trouble walking away from it when his accomplice and clearly less fortunate friend Sumani blackmails him (figure 51).   439 Sonyǒn (1938.8) 10-21. 440 This psychological examination is reminiscent of the work of Dostoyevsky, who apparently exerted a great influence on Hyŏn’s work. Wŏn (2005) 92.  186       Figure 51 Mun’gi  Money is the source of Mun’gi’s downfall, and sends him further over the edge when he steals from his aunt and then fails to confess; as a consequence, an innocent girl is blamed for his wrongdoing. He is “saved” at the end of the story, in a didactic twist, by a car accident which he recognizes as appropriate punishment and which gives him the courage to confess his wrongdoings.  The story is in essence a critique of material wealth and the corrupting powers of consumerism. It is also a statement about the disadvantage of children within this capitalist system. Hyǒn’s poetic skill for the most part succeeds in masking the story’s didactic messages  187 by probing with scrutiny and deep sympathy the mindset of the boy. When Mun’gi goes on his first shopping spree, he buys a ball; later, when he is reminded by his uncle of the responsibility Mun’gi has to his family to grow into a trustworthy man, Mun’gi is consumed with guilt and decides to get rid of the items he has bought. Mun’gi’s guilt warps his sense of perception of the items he has wrongfully acquired, so that “the darker night grew, the whiter and larger the ball felt.” Later, an innocent Chǒmsuni gets blamed for his crime and is beaten; Mungi does not witness the beating, but her sobbing rings out in his head for hours. In his narration, Hyǒn succeeds in being critical and engaged, and yet he does not lose his sense of sympathy and understanding for the children’s plight.441 Besides the work published in Sonyŏn, Hyǒn’s a linked short story collection was published in the Sonyǒn chosǒn ilbo from May of 1938 until the following year.442 It was later re-published as a novel of linked short stories in the liberation space under the title P’odo wa kusŭl [Grapes and Marbles]. The stories are set in the east side of Seoul, in a neighbourhood straddling cityscape and countryside. The characters that appear in this novel are all pre-primary aged children. They are each marked with specific characteristics: Noma is the smart and brave one, Yǒng’i is the girl, Kidungi is the rich boy and Ttolttori, is far the youngest.443  Hyǒn’s work is unique in the music of its language, and in the gentle way in which he explores his children’s relationships with each other and with the world around them. At the same time, his  441 Hyŏn’s talent has been noted in recent scholarship. Pak Yŏnggi (2006) notes that Hyŏn’s child characters have the potential to overturn the colonial order and restore people to their original state of goodness; Kang Chunho (1996) notes that Hyŏn contributed greatly to Korean literature through his creative work that resisted the idea of using literature as a tool; O Hyejin (2006) notes that Hyŏn’s characters behave like real children with real emotions; and Wŏn (1999, 2005) praises Hyŏn for portraying children with charm and sincerity, children that live and act within a believable reality and for managing to achieve this without falling into the traps of sentimentalism or didacticism. 442 Wǒn (2005) 155.  188 work explores the way that the children’s environment shapes the construction of the gender identity. Hyǒn’s illustrator, Chŏng Hyŏnung,444 contributes to the Hyŏn’s work with subtle illustrations that give the reader small bits of information that enrich the written text. P’odo wa kusŭl, [Grapes and Marbles], which was re-published in 1995 as Nŏ hago an nora [Not playing with you], is divided into thirty-five sections, seven of which are illustrated.445 The first section, “The Water Gun,” introduces the reader to the main characters, along with an illustration that enhances the sense of power and drama. “Kidungi has a water-gun,” the narrator explains, and “Kidungi shows off. And he has every right to show off.” Noma, on the other hand, does not have a gun. Kidungi teases Noma, promising him a turn with his gun if Noma supplies him with water. Then he shoots Noma right in the face, and the illustration captures this humiliating moment (figure 52):  Figure 52 Squirt   443 Hyŏn liked to use these names for characters in his other stories as well. 444 Chŏng Hyŏnung was born in 1911 and studied at the Kawabata School in Japan in 1929. From 1937 he illustrated for the magazine Sonyŏn, and he also illustrated the works of Yi Kiyŏng, Ch’ae Mansik and Yi T’aejun. He went north after the Korean War and went on to enjoy a successful career as an artist. Most of his illustrations in Sonyŏn tend to be very dark, such as the one above of Mun’gi and Sumani (Cho Yŏngbok 2002). 445 The illustrations included here are from the Liberation Space publication from 1946.  189  The illustration shows Kidungi standing flat on his feet, belly out, hands straight; Noma’s face is hidden by the powerful squirt of water, which has knocked him off his heels in surprise. The last paragraph reveals that Kidung’i is from a “have” family – he has money, he has candy, he has a father.  Noma, on the other hand, has none of these things: no status, no money, and no father, either. Though the reader learns much about the children in the following chapters, and about their families, their class, and their personalities, the narrator does not divulge everything at the outset. In our first encounter with Kidung’i we see him taking aim at a sleeping crow and at his surroundings, and in this way we get a picture of where he lives. The narrator aligns himself with the reader by divulging information and saying “well, it is only proper that Kidung’i show off.” The narrator is not detached but is a part of the children’s world; he understands their rules and their logic. Hyǒn’s language—his asides to the reader, the subtle way in which he sets up his surroundings—is successful also in the way in which it reproduces the children’s conversations. He uses repetitions, fragments, and spelling errors that imitate real speech; he masters the various mannerisms of the children and reproduces their conversations. The narration does not lose sight of the social issues at hand; when Noma begs his mother for a gun like Kidungi’s, his mother explains that they are from different social classes that are separated by a gap that cannot be bridged. Noma wants a water gun so badly that he starts seeing water-guns in every object he looks at. In this way, Hyǒn captures both the child’s rich imagination and his intense yearning for this toy, and the social tensions which frame the child’s yearning. Hyŏn’s narrator successfully captures the children’s state of mind through careful orchestration. For example, the second section, “Only the Wind Knows…” unfolds like a poem:  190 three “colored skirts”, one pink, one yellow and one blue, sit and wait for the much-anticipated arrival of the cotton candy man. The reader gets a sense of the girls’ anticipation through the distant rhythm of the cotton candy man’s drum, as well as through the exchange between the girls and the various characters they encounter. The narrator shows rather than tells the reader about the girls’ excitement.  So, too, in chapter ten, “The Grasshopper.” Through repetitions that force the reader to “listen” closely to the text, the narrator draws the reader into the dreams and aspirations of three of the young children in this text: Noma, Yǒng’i and Ttolttori. Noma listens to the grasshopper, identifies with the grasshopper, and becomes the grasshopper. He grows so close with it that Noma feels that the grasshopper knows what is in his heart: Noma yearns for the return of his father. Yǒng’i hears something different in the grasshopper’s song: she feels that the grasshopper, like her, is waiting for the chestnuts to ripen. Ttolttori finds his dreams in the same song: he wants to grow tall. The children each embrace their dream, and for one single moment there is nothing more important than each of their selfish and innermost desires. Hyǒn’s prose narrates their aspirations with poetic language that captures with great humility the state of mind of these children. Hyǒn’s language also captures and conveys the relationships between the children without having to overstate any superfluous details. For example, in section three, “Corn Snacks,” the reader is introduced to the girl of the group, Yǒng’i, who is inflicted by the punishment of quietly have to watch Kidung’i eat his corn snacks one by one. His arrogant pose, the way in which he eats his corn snacks, and the drawn-out pleasure he takes in eating in his friends’ hungry faces, reveals more about this child than if it were narrated directly. Yǒng’i, for her part, keeps tight control over her own desires, which she reveals in the terribly brief but charged dialogue:  191  Is it yummy? You bet. Sweet, too? You bet.  As seen in this brief dialogue, Hyǒn does not spell out the children’s desires or spoon-feed the reader with commentary. The minute change in nuance in Yǒng’i’s second question, contrasted with Kidung’i’s monotonous answer, reveals much about what is going through these children’s minds. In section eight, “Father’s Shoes”, something starts to happen between the children. In all previous sections we see Kidung’i standing on one side of the social divide, while the other children stand on the other. Kidung’i takes many opportunities to show off his money and social status, but the children begin to exclude him from their games, which sends him off in tears. The illustration (figure 53) reflects the change in Kidung’i’s position:        Figure 53 Shoes  Having been excluded several times from the children’s games, Kidung’i steps into his father’s shoes to try and get some attention and throw his weight around. As the illustration shows, though Kidung’i is wearing adult shoes (he is, in fact, the only child in this text who actually has  192 a father), and though his chest is inflated with pride, the children keep their backs to him and ignore him completely. Section nine, “Snacks”, reveals more of the author’s political affiliations. Once again, Kidung’i uses his ever-powerful tool, his snacks, to show off his social position. He lures the children toward him as, one by one, each child swears loyalty to Kidung’i in exchange for a single snack. Eventually Kidung’i runs out of snacks, at which point the children lose interest in Kidung’i and ignore him completely. The “have” child Kidung’i, who has gathered a group of children based only on his possession of treats, loses their attention when his treats runs out. Kidung’i alienation is exacerbated in section eleven, “The Brawl,” when quick, sharp words are exchanged between the children. When their exchanges threaten to turn into an outright fight, Kidung’i realizes that he stands alone. His distance from the rest is accentuated in the illustration, for example, of section fourteen “The Mask,” in which Kidung’i stands again with an inflated chest, but a foot ahead of his friends (figure 54):         Figure 54 Mask In “The Mask,” Kidung’i takes the children along to shop at the rich boys’ toy store, where he purchases a fancy mask. The narrator explains that the toys sold at the “rich boy” store are much  193 more significant than those “useless” ones sold at the “poor boy” store, where you can only buy toys that can be played with other children. Later, however, Kidung’i’s is embraced by the group. He is with them by the end of the story, in section twenty-nine, “Disappointment”, when the children all go fishing but discover that the river is dry. Wǒn (1999) comments that this text shows the victory of the lower-classes: the poorer children manage to include Kidung’i in their games, and he surrenders to their charms.446 Several sections in Hyǒn’s work provide interesting insights into role play and gender. In “Girls’ Rubber Shoes”, for example, Noma becomes terribly embarrassed when his mother gives him the wrong pair of rubber shoes. Noma’s mother sends him on an errand, but Noma is too ashamed to go because his rubber boots are too worn out. His mother gets him a new pair to wear, but when she presents them to Noma he discovers to his horror that they are girls’ shoes. On the way to his errand, Noma runs into his girl friend Yǒng’i, who is equally mortified at having been forced to wear boys’ shoes (Noma and Yǒng’i’s mother switched the children’s shoes for the sake of this errand), and all this is seen by Kidung’i, who delights in Noma and Yǒng’i’s mortification. The section ends with poor Noma slinking off “looking at the ground like a girl.” The gendered articles of clothing are powerful symbols for both children who are so humiliated they cannot stand to look up. In contrast, the chapter “Bravery” depicts the children at a game of mock war:  Kidung’i plays the sergeant, and the others play the soldiers awaiting his orders. What “makes the man”, or the sergeant in this case, is the clothing: Kidung’i is the only one who owns a suit, a hat, and a real, shiny sword that his father bought for him. Noma, who does not have these things, decides that there must be a new way to decide “what makes the sergeant”: a test of bravery, which involves running and shaking the gate to the house with the  446 Wǒn (1999) 249.  194 big dog. In the end, Noma is the only one who pulls it off; he’s the only one qualified to be the sergeant. And in “Mother’s strength”, children playing house dramatize the mother’s role, and through dramatic play the children voice the heavy responsibilities resting on mothers. From the play we learn that mothers nag their children about keeping clean and staying calm. The game ceases to become make-believe when a big dog threatens their play, but then the “mother” truly does risk herself and scares the hound away. The self-sacrificing role of the mother is dramatized to the very end.  5.5 Conclusion The Sino-Japanese War and the intensification of assimilation cultural policies effectively ended the period of leniency on publication in colonized Korea. For children’s writers, this meant that the forum for discussing class-based issues or challenging the exploitation of children through a political lens was no longer available through children’s magazines. By the mid-1930s, both the proletarian organizations (such as KAPF) and the magazines that hosted their writing (Pyŏllara, Sinsonyŏn) were no longer in print. In their place, Sonyŏn became the new children’s magazine. Published between 1937 and 1940, this magazine was a stage upon which writers published for their imagined child audiences. But gone were the empowering messages. No longer was the child imaged to be a righteous warrior who, seeing the exploitation and corruption around him, was ready to take a stand and correct his parents’ mistakes. The child constructed by the many illustrations, essays, prose and poetry in Sonyŏn had reverted, for the most part, to the original state of vulnerability and purity, except for one difference: the child was no longer to be protected so much as to be inculcated, as quickly as possible, into orderly colonial society. Its body was to be cleaned and disciplined; its mind informed about the sophistication of war and  195 of the sacrifices of the soldiers at the front fighting for the sake of the Pan-Asian cause. Poetry showed children as inseparable from nature, and it is this natural quality that made them all the more pliable. This magazine was not, however, without its fissures, and was not bereft of any contending voices. Voices of resistance were able to break through, but not through vocal protest. As the work of Hyŏn Tŏk shows, there was room in the magazine for a writerly voice to both see and show the complexity of the lives of children caught in the whirlwind of colonialism and war.  196 6  Ŏrininara, Sohaksaeng, and the Liberated Child  6.1 Introduction  Liberation finally came to the Korean peninsula on 15 August 1945. It is easy to imagine how the period immediately following the defeat of the Japanese and achievement of long-awaited independence was charged with immense expectations. Liberation from the 36-year Japanese occupation must have been an exhilarating experience; but it also brought in its wake intense feelings and anxieties about how to realize the hopes and dreams for Korea’s future. Of course, the “Korean dream” of liberation was defined differently by groups of people divided along ideological and economic lines. As Dae-Sook Suh notes,  During the three years from liberation in 1945 to the establishment of the Republic of Korea in August 1948, the USAMGIK [United States Government Army in Korea] was challenged many times by the right-wing nationalist groups demanding rapid independence and the left-wing groups with their ideological ties to the North. Politicians of all persuasions made demands on the occupation authorities, and violent uprisings and armed riots were common occurrences.447  At the same time, there remains a question regarding the degree to which Korea was liberated in the full sense of the term, as many governing institutions shifted from being controlled by the Japanese to being controlled by the USAMGIK. The implications of this shift were that surveillance and control continued in many ways, and that the basic power structure was upheld.448 Liberation from the Japanese and Independence on 15 August 1945 created the opportunity for open dialogue and confrontation over how to empower those who had been disenfranchised under Korea’s loss of sovereignty, how to deal with those who had remained in favor during the Japanese occupation, how to define the now independent national character,  447 Suh Dae-sook (2008) 150.  197 and how to move forward as a sovereign nation with its particular national character and voice. As Joel Stevenson notes,  With the end of Japanese colonial rule, there was a groundswell of optimism for Korea’s future. Koreans had their country back. The suppression of literary activity in the closing years of Japanese rule was suddenly lifted, and Korea’s writers were let loose to pursue whatever course they chose. This was the only time in modern Korean history when writers were free to write with impunity.449  Ted Hughes reviews the reaction in the literary world to newfound independence in the works of prominent critics such as Kwǒn Yǒngmin, Kim Yunsik and Sin Hyǒnggi. In his article “Producing Sovereign Spaces in the Emerging Cold War World Order: Immediate Postliberation “South” and “North” Korean Literature,” Hughes provides a summary of the issues of the period based on the aforementioned scholars’ works, which include “the trajectory of collaboration confessionals, the reemergence of proletarian writers soon opposed by the reassertion of literature as an autonomous sphere in the name of pure literature (sunsu munhak), the rapid formation of rival literary organizations, the eventual splitting of the literary field into what became “North and South Korean literature.”450 Korea’s past, present and future were on the line and different groups with opposing philosophies were vying to have their voice heard. But what marks the Liberation Space most is the intense and vibrant discussion that took place over every aspect of material culture production in Korea: the debate over how to define liberated ‘Chosŏn culture’ and how to revive it. One thing is clear: following liberation, the censorship and limitations on reading and publishing were lifted, allowing for an outpouring of books of all genres.451 The rapid changes in consumer culture and the availability of a wide  448 See Millet (2005). 449 Joel Stevenson (1999) 35. 450 Hughes (2005) 2. 451 Yi Chung’yŏn 117.  198 range of choices made for a vibrant period of book culture in general, and children’s literature in particular. While post-liberation Korea was immersed in ideological confrontation, writers who were active in the field of children’s literature did not yet participate fully in ideological battles on paper.452 The children’s magazines that were published in the Liberation Space were affiliated with leftist or rightist organizations, but there was a fair amount of cross-writing from one to the other. With the outbreak of the Korean War in 1950, however, North and South Korea hardened their ideological stances and broadcasted their versions of national identity that were now exclusively linked to identification with anti-Imperialist or anti-Communist ideology. 6.2 Publishing Trends in Liberated Korea  Publication in post-liberation Korea was seen as a crucial part of the nation-building process. Publishing houses made it clear that the purpose of their industry was now the rehabilitation of Chosŏn culture. Of course, diverse ideological motivations also drove each publishing house to publish texts of its own particular ideological leanings, and each defined Chosŏn culture and nationalism differently. As for children’s literature, writers from the political left and right contributed to magazines on both sides of the political spectrum, and their voices contributed to the polyphony of opinions on Chosŏn’s present and future until they were increasingly censored and, with the Korean War, silenced completely. The publishing trends of children’s literature in the Liberation Space cannot be examined separately from the general state of book publishing in this period. Immediately after liberation, publishing houses in Korea suffered a shortage of both Korean alphabet type sets and  452 Ch’ŏn ŭi ŏlgul 99.  199 staff with publishing knowhow.453 However, an explosion of publications ensued with the support and active participation of the intelligentsia and the lifting of the ban on publications in the Korean peninsula in 1945. Publications of socialist content enjoyed particular success, particularly in 1946, in the form of leftist pamphlets.454 Yi Chung’yŏn argues that the presence of leftist pamphlets and their popularity can be ascribed to the fact that until the end of 1945, the Americans had not established a strong presence and the ideological face-off was still much under control. Even more illuminating is Yi’s research pointing to the degree to which the leftists actively took over the print-houses occupied and run by the Japanese, to a much greater extent than their counterparts on the right of the political spectrum.455 How did the ideological divides play out in children’s literature? Writers of left-leaning politics had unquestionable leadership in the field of children’s literature, at least until 1947. This is reflected in the renewed publication in 1945 of such proletarian magazines as Pyŏlnara, Saedongmu and Adong munhak, which participated in the discussion over the direction of children’s literature after liberation and in which maintained general visibility in the postwar period.456 Writers of right- or center-leaning politics cooperated more with the political line touted by the government and enjoyed greater prosperity457. However, what becomes clear  453 Yi Chung’yŏn 117-8. 454 Yi Chung’yŏn 47-51. Other pamphlets from this period that enjoyed popularity were what Yi calls pamphlets of “enlightenment” about language and history, and pamphlets of “instigation” that were meant to ignite discussion on social issues (48). 455 Yi Chung’yŏn attributes the increased publication of left-leaning books to their active propogation, the growth in reading demand, and the profit-seeking behaviour of publishing houses and bookstores. (55-8) 456 The senior editor of Adong Munhak was Chŏng Chiyong, and the other contributors included prominent political activists and leftist writers such as Pak Seyŏng, Song Wansun, Yi Tonggyu and Yi Chuhong. Ch’ŏn ŭi ŏlgul 102. 457 Yun Sŏkchung, for example, led a successful and lucrative career during and after the liberation