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The Korea Now Podcast

Aug 8, 2020

This episode of the Korea Now podcast features an interview that Jed Lea-Henry conducted with Brother Anthony of Taizé. They speak about the history and origins of Korean poetry, the imagery that is often used by Korean poets, the structure and form that Korean poetry follows, the difficulties and challenges of translating from Korean to English, how Korean poetry has changed over time, the lives and works of selected Korean poets, and importantly Brother Anthony’s experience within this field and the insights it offers into Korean life and culture.

Brother Anthony of Taizé (Professor An Sonjae) was born in 1942 in England and completed his studies in the University of Oxford before becoming a member of the Community of Taizé (France) in 1969. Since 1980, he has been living in Korea and teaching English literature at Sogang University, where he is now an Emeritus Professor. He is also Chair-Professor in the International Creative Writing Center of Dankook University. Since January 2011 he has been President of the Royal Asiatic Society Korea Branch.

During his time at Sogang University he served as English Department Chairman 1992 – 1994, was in charge of the British & American Cultures Major from July 2000 - 2003, and was again Chair of the English Department from May 2001 until July 2003. He served as President of the Medieval and Early Modern English Studies Association of Korea 1998-2000, and has published well over 40 volumes of English translations of modern Korean literature, mainly poetry.

He has received the Korea Times Translation Award, the Daesan Translation Award, the Korean Republic’s Literary Award (Translation) and the Korean PEN Translation Award for his work. He took Korean citizenship in 1994 and An Sonjae is his official Korean name. He received the Korean government’s 문화훈장 Award of Merit, Jade Crown class, in October 2008 for his work in promoting knowledge of Korean literature in the world. He was awarded an honorary MBE by Queen Elizabeth in December 2015 for contributions to Korean-British relations,

*** Brother Anthony of Taizé’s personal and professional website:

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