The Proceedings of the 8th World Congress of Korean Studies, 5-6 October 2016, UNiversity of Pennsylvania, USA
The present research focuses on the autobiographical writings of two outstanding political figures, the former presidents of South Korea, Kim Dae-jung (1998-2003) and Roh Moo-hyun (2003-2008). The study aims to define how individual memories of the past are interwoven with collective memories and how these memories are reflected in life narratives. The preliminary results of the research show that the individual memories of two politicians regarding significant historical events considerably contest and criticize the official historical discourse. Kim Dae-jung and Roh Moo-hyun have used different forms of autobiographical writing, autobiography and memoir, to record their private recollections, which are testimonies of the authors’ past experiences. In this regard, they are especially helpful resources for understanding how collective memory of the past has been formed and mobilized in South Korea.
The article discusses research perspectives in the study of Russian pre-modern first-person writings that are commonly called autobiographies. Its first part starts with definitions of what is “early Russian” and “autobiographical,” briefly introduces six texts, gives a condensed review of the approaches to the study of these texts by literary and cultural historians from 1950s to present, and concludes with suggestion of some new perspectives to their analysis. The article argues that re-questioning of early Russian autobiographical writings is prompted by some recent important changes in the humanities and social sciences and by some insights from historians and literary scholars that study first-person texts of the Western tradition. The second part of the article is a case-study that examines one autobiographical text, The Life (Zhitie) of monk Epifanii (? – 1682) and focuses on one topic: representation of the hero/author’s pain and healing. The analysis of this representation is conducted in relation to concrete social and political contexts of the text. The study concludes that contextualizing pre-modern first-person narratives as social activities embedded in historically specific reality helps in better understanding of their meanings.
The article considers the phenomenon of nostalgia for the late Soviet times. The author presents the results of his observations over the nostalgia segment of the Russian blogosphere. The article is based on the concepts of the past, collective memory and nostalgia, which have been worked out by M. Halbwachs, D. Lowenthal and S. Boym.
The Soviet-Afghan war was one of the bloodiest conflicts of the Cold War. Afghanistan was not only the battlefield of the Soviet-American system competition, but was also a place of more or less violent Encounter between "modern" Soviets and "backward" Afghans.
The article describes the structures of autobiographical narration in the novels and essays of the austrian writer E. Canetti.