2 Writers of Korean Descent Win U.S. National Book Awards

  • By Baik Su-jin

    November 20, 2020 09:18

    Korean-Japanese author Yu Mi-ri and Korean-American poet and translator Choi Don-mee are among the winners of this year's National Book Awards, one of the most prestigious literary honors in the U.S.

    The National Book Foundation on Wednesday announced the winners of this year's awards. The poetry prize went to Choi's "DMZ Colony," while Yu's Japanese-language novel "Tokyo Ueno Station" received the award for translated literature.

    Yu Mi-ri (left) and Choi Don-mee

    "DMZ Colony" is a poetry collection that takes its name from the demilitarized zone on the Korean Peninsula.

    "Tokyo Ueno Station" describes Japanese society from the perspective of a ghost who lingers in the capital's Ueno Park. Morgan Giles, who translated the novel, shares the award with Yu.

    Cho Nam-joo's feminist novel "Kim Ji-young, Born in 1982" was longlisted for the award for translated literature but did not make the shortlist.

    Last year, Korean-American Susan Choi, who won the National Book Award for fiction for "Trust Exercise," became the first winner of Korean descent.

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