Title: Forgotten Reflections
Author: Young-Im Lee
What does it mean to dream when everything around you crumbles and you are born into a nation where oppression runs in your blood?
My grandmother Ji-Iseul lived in a quaint rice-farming village in South Korea during the Korean War. She too once had hopes and dreams of what her future might bring. She did not choose war, nor did she choose to fall in love with the enemy—a boy who is allegedly a North Korean communist spy.
In the current international climate where North Korea takes center stage, “Forgotten Reflections” ponders on what the Korean War means to South Korea, spanning three generations. It weaves in and out of Jia’s modern perspective as she unravels her grandmother Iseul’s past to find a mysterious man. It follows two scrawny eighteen-year-old kids on a comic journey of self-discovery across the mountainous peninsula, where the occasional appearances of legendary ghosts and animals come to the aid of Jung-Soo, Iseul and Jia. Music helps them pass the time, as does the radio and the crafty carpentry skills of Iseul who would eventually make history with her handcrafted hanji paper. Unexpected friendships are forged, love burgeons and betrayal taints their elusive dreams.
I promise, Iseul, that day is coming! The world is changing as we speak and soon, you and I can dream all we want!
About the Author:
Young-Im Lee was born in Mokpo, South Korea and relocated to Manila, Philippines where she grew up in an international setting. She graduated with a BA in English Literature from Seoul National University, and a MA in Literary Theory from the University of York (UK). She currently resides in Seoul, South Korea.