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The Korea Now Podcast

Jun 28, 2020

This episode of the Korea Now podcast features an interview that Jed Lea-Henry conducted with Ayse Naz Bulamur. They speak about Theresa Hak Kyung Cha’s Dictee, the different analytical interpretations of the novel, the importance of the text and how people have come to understand it over time, the role that emotion plays in building the characters, the blend between prose, poetry, autobiography, historical text, and story-telling, the experimental nature of the novel, the way that time plays out – both connecting and separating characters, the distance that emerges between the Korean mother and her Korean-American daughter, and importantly how love becomes a ‘contact zone’ for the female characters across time and space.

Ayse Naz Bulamur is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Western Languages and Literatures at Boaziçi University, Istanbul. She received her PhD in Literary Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She is the author of How Istanbul's Cultural Complexities Have Shaped Eight Contemporary Novelists: Tales of Istanbul in Contemporary Fiction, and Victorian Murderesses: The Politics of Female Violence. She has written articles on the works of British, American, and Turkish female writers from the early seventeenth century to the present, including articles on Margaret Fuller's Woman in the Nineteenth Century, Hannah Webster Foster's The Coquette, Elizabeth Cary's The Tragedy of Mariam, A. S. Byatt's The Djinn in the Nightingales Eye, and Elif Safak's The Bastard of Istanbul. Her research focuses on postcolonial theory, urban theory, feminist criticism, and nineteenth-century and contemporary fiction. And pertinent to this podcast she is the author of: ‘Love as a Contact Zone in Theresa Hak Kyung Cha’s Dictee (1982)’ (

*** Theresa Hak Kyung Cha’s Dictee (

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