2009 Sejong Writing Competition
Sarah Bennett is an active poet and a member of the poetry collective "Every Other Thursday." She currently teaches 7th grade math and science at Collins Middle School in Salem Mass., and is working on a Masters Program in Mathematics for Teachers. She has edited, designed and published several books of other's poetry under the imprint Dytiscid Press, and her own "Ten Poems about Highways and Birds" was recently published to some critical acclaim. In the 1980s she was named Poet Laureate of Worcester County (Mass.). Bennett once appeared on New Year's Eve as a Pink Poetry Jukebox. She finds the Sijo form very satisfying.
John Hildebidle enjoyed a peripatetic childhood, and then settled near Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. He earned a BA, MA, and PhD at Harvard, and has taught in a public secondary school, Harvard, and (for 25 years) MIT. His publications include THE OLD ÇHORE (verse), ONE SLEEP, ONE WAKING (verse), DEFINING ABSENCE (verse), and SIGNS, TRANSLATIONS (verse), STUBBORNNESS: A FIELD GUIDE (fiction), THOREAU: A NATURALIST'S LIBERTY and FIVE IRISH WRITERS: THE ERRAND OF KEEPING ALIVE. He lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
David R. McCann, ICAS, is Korea Foundation Professor of Korean Literature in the Department of East Asian Languages and Civilizations as well as Director of the Korea Institute at Harvard University. David is the recipient of numerous prizes, grants, and fellowships including the prestigious Manhae Prize in Arts and Sciences (2004), the Daesan Foundation Translation Grant (1997), and the Korea P.E.N. Center Translation Prize (1994). His many books include Traveler Maps: Poems by Ko Un (2004), The Columbia Anthology of Modern Korean Poetry (2004), Early Korean Literature: Selections and Introductions (2001), War and Democracy: A Comparative Study of the Korean War and the Peloponnesian War (2001) and The Classical Moment: Views from Seven Literatures (1999).
Not only a renowned translator of major Korean poems but also a well-recognized poet, David has published many poems in such distinguished media as Poetry, Ploughshares, Descant, Runes and recently published a chapbook of poems Cat Bird Tree (2005). His poem "David" was included in the Pushcart Prize Anthology III. David's new book of poems The Way I Wait For You has been accepted for publication by Codhill Press and will be published this year.
Yoosup Chang received his B.A. in Asian Studies at Vassar College. He is currently a videographer and a producer for independent films. His co-translations of Korean folktales and literary short fiction have appeared in Oral Literature of Korea, edited by Peter H. Lee, and AZALEA: Journal of Korean Literature & Culture, published by Harvard University’s Korea Institute. He has also translated numerous contemporary literary works for the Korea Literature Translation Insitute.
Heinz Insu Fenkl is an author, editor, translator, folklorist, and the director of the Interstitial Studies Institute at the State University of New York, New Paltz. His fiction includes Memories of My Ghost Brother, an autobiographical novel about growing up in Korea as a bi-racial child in the '60s. He was named a Barnes and Noble "Great New Writer" and Pen/Hemingway finalist in 1997. He has also published short fiction in a variety of journals and magazines, as well as numerous articles on folklore and myth.
He lectures regularly for The Korea Society on a variety of topics including Korean animation, comics, literature, and folktales.
Heinz was raised in Korea and (in his later years) Germany and the United States. Graduating from Vassar, he studied folklore and shamanism as a Fulbright Scholar in Korea and dream research under a grant from the University of California. Before his appointment to his current position at New Paltz, he taught a range of courses at Vassar, Bard, Sarah Lawrence, and Yonsei University (Korea), including Asian/American Folk Traditions, East Asian Folklore Korean Literature, Asian American Literature, and Native American Literature, in addition to Creative Writing.
He has published translations of Korean fiction and folklore, and is co-editor of Kori: The Beacon Anthology of Korean American Literature. He also writes regular columns on mythic topics for Realms of Fantasy magazine.
Heinz lives in the Hudson Valley with his wife, writer and artist Anne B. Dalton, and their daughter Isabella Myong-wol.
Professor Young Min Kwon (Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea) is considered by many to be the most prominent scholar in the field of Korean literature. Kwon taught two courses at Harvard University in 2004: History of Modern Korean Literature and History of Modern Korean Fiction. By all accounts they were a great success. In addition to a thorough and engaging presentation of modern Korean literature, Prof. Kwon was also able to spice his lectures with personal stories about the authors being studied, many of whom he had met or knew. Literature for Professor Kwon, it would seem, is not just something to be read silently and pondered alone, but a social activity, a group of people getting together to bring their own individual stories to the stories on the page. His voluminous scholarship helps to define the meeting place, and his endearing personality invites people to gather and partake. In addition to teaching, Professor Kwon also organized (along with Professor David McCann) the International Exchange Program for Graduate Students in Korean Literature at Harvard in June 2004. Some thirty students and professors from the U.S., Korea and Canada participated in the week-long event aimed at building stronger ties between students of Korean literature in North America and those in Korea.
Ed Bok Lee is a poet, fiction writer, playwright and the author of REAL KARAOKE PEOPLE, which won a PEN/Beyond Margins Award, an Asian American Literary Award (Members' Choice), an Urban Griots Award for Best Book, and in 2007 was a national poetry bestseller. Lee holds an MFA from Brown University, and is currently a 2009 McKnight Artists Fellow in Poetry.
Visit him at www.edboklee.com.