Dictee

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University of California Press, 1982 - Poetry - 179 pages
4 Reviews
Dictee is the best-known work of the versatile and important artist Theresa Hak Kyung Cha (1951-1982). A classic work of autobiography that transcends the self, Dictee is the story of several women: the Korean revolutionary Yu Guan Soon, Joan of Arc, Demeter and Persephone, Cha's mother Hyung Soon Huo (a Korean born in Manchuria to first-generation Korean exiles), and Cha herself. The element that unites these women is suffering and the transcendence of suffering. The book is divided into nine parts structured around the Greek Muses. Cha deploys a variety of texts, documents, images, and forms of address and inquiry to explore issues of dislocation and the fragmentation of memory. The result is a work of power, complexity, and enduring beauty.
 

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User Review  - whitewavedarling - LibraryThing

Needlessly complicated, this work tries diligently to transcend genre and linear trains of thought, but as a result becomes overtly abstract and difficult to follow. More of a collage than a coherent ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - deliriumslibrarian - LibraryThing

How to capture the strangeness of this book? It's haunted me since it was introduced into my consciousness by three unrelated people mentioning it to me in the same day. Inventive, resistant ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Section 1
98
Section 2
101
Section 3
102
Section 4
104
Section 5
109
Section 6
110
Section 7
113
Section 8
123
Section 9
133
Section 10
134
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About the author (1982)

Theresa Hak Kyung Cha was born in 1951 in Pusan, Korea, and grew up in Korea, Hawaii, and Northern California. She received bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of California, Berkeley, and did postgraduate work in Paris. Her studies in literature, theory, performance art, and filmmaking influenced her varied output as an artist. In 1982, Cha was murdered by a stranger in New York City, just a few days after the original publication of Dictee.

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