An Introduction to Classical Korean Literature: From Hyangga to P'ansori

By Kichung Kim | Go to book overview

3
The Incomparable Lyricism of Koryŏ Songs

The Koryŏ songs are in a sense the earliest surviving vernacular Korean poetry. For although the earliest of the Shilla hyangga poems predate the Koryŏ songs by several centuries, those earlier poems do not survive as poetry in the full meaning of the word, that is, both in sound and in sense. By deciphering hyangch'al, the hybrid writing system in which the hyangga were composed, we can grope toward the sense of each of the twenty-five surviving hyangga poems, but as to their exact sound we have much less to go on. With the Koryŏ songs, however, it is an entirely different matter. Because they come down to us in their later transcriptions into hangŭl, we have not only their sense but their sound as well. As we shall see, that sound is an integral part of the Koryŏ songs and the fascination they hold for us.

As with the earlier hyangga, the Korean-language songs surviving from the Koryŏ period ( A.D. 918-1392) are extremely few. Only twenty-one are known to us.1 This paucity has two main causes. First, there was no indigenous writing system during the Koryŏ period and it was therefore necessary to rely on oral transmission of these vernacular verses. Second, even among those few Korean-language poems that survived through oral transmission from the Koryŏ to the Chosŏn period, some were lost by virtue of being excluded for one reason or another from anthologies of Korean-language poems compiled by Chosŏn Confucian scholars or expunged from existing anthologies because they were considered improper or indecent.

-25-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
An Introduction to Classical Korean Literature: From Hyangga to P'ansori
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Preface ix
  • 1 - What is Korean Literature? 3
  • 2 - The Mystery and Loveliness of the Hyangga 11
  • 3 - The Incomparable Lyricism of Koryŏ Songs 25
  • 4 Notes on the Samguk sagi and Samguk yusa 48
  • 5 - Notes on Shijo 75
  • 6 - The Literature of Chosŏn Dynasty Women 95
  • 7 - Hŏ Kyun: Hong Kiltong Chŏn and the Hanmun Lives 141
  • Notes 157
  • 9 - The Literature of Shirhak: Yŏnam, Pak Chi-Wŏn 171
  • 10 - Notes on P'Ansori 197
  • Toward Modern Korean Literature 209
  • Works Cited 219
  • Index 223
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 232

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.