[KS] Korean children's books

Angela Jin ajin513 at yahoo.com
Tue Jan 7 19:02:03 EST 2003

If you or someone you know is interested and qualified to participate in a conference on Korean children's literature, please email me asap at ajin513 at yahoo.com.
Thank you.From: "don cohn" 
To: ajin513 at yahoo.com
Subject: details on children's books exhibition
Date: Tue, 07 Jan 2003 12:53:03 +0000

Dear Angela Jin,

David Steinberg kindly forwarded your email to him concerning the 
exhibition, and I am taking the liberty to forward you further information 
on the topic.

I should mention that we certainly need someone who can write in English.

The information below may help you to narrow your suggestions for people I 
might contact.

I would much appreciate it if you could send me a few names and email 
addresses of scholars in the field.

Here is an informal intro to the exhibition.

Many many thanks for taking the time and trouble to deal with this.

* * *

I am working on a major exhibition subtitled “Three Hundred Years of 
Children’s Books from China, Japan and Korea?from the Cotsen Children’s 
Library (Princeton University) and other collections. The exhibition will be 
held in the USA in 2005. This will be a large-scale museum exhibition, with 
a generous budget, community involvement, a complete catalogue, and 
(hopefully) funds for library/museum collaboration coming from the US 
federal government.

The first venue is the Hammer Museum at UCLA, Los Angeles, which will be 
completely refurbished in 2004. We then plan for the show to travel to the 
East Coast, venue yet unknown. We have not discussed the idea of the show 
traveling to Asia, but this is possible and desirable.

The show is in the planning stage. However, the person at the Hammer Museum 
who is one of the key players, and the main funding applicant, has mounted 
over 40 large exhibitions in the field of books and prints in the past 20 
years, and is quite confident that this show will take place.

The exhibition, with about 500 objects, will be about 40% Chinese, 40% 
Japanese, 15% Korean with perhaps a smattering of related material from 
Vietnam, India, Mongolia and Cambodia.

One problem we have is producing the full 15% from Korea to match the 
breadth, depth and quality of the Ch and Jp material...

We are seeking a scholar to write a general essay on Korean children's books 
(alongside "literature," education, magazines, graphics, reading habits, 
printed games, the history of printing, distribution networds, publishers, 
etc.) for the catalogue.

Equally important, this person should have the knowledge and connections to 
identify and borrow rare Korean children's books from Korea or elsewhere to 
fill holes in the Cotsen collection’s Korean acquistions. We can supply a 
list of this material.

It would also be a plus if this person could obtain from Korean sources some 
funding for the Korean portion of the exhibition, perhaps to cover fees, 
lending and shipping and insurance costs, etc.

The scholar will receive a professional fee for the work--from the main 
budget as well as from Korean sources as available. Based on models I have 
seen, the fee might be the equivalent of 3-4 months of a university 
professor's salary. The actual fee will be partially dependent on the 
candidate's entrepreneurship in dealing with possibly funding sources in 

There will be a board of advisors consisting of people from UCLA and 
Princeton, and perhaps elsewhere. Initially, we are thinking of having 2 Ch, 
2 Jp and 1 Kr experts on this board. The person we are looking for might be 
the Kr expert on the board.

At present, the Cotsen Children’s Library has some 19th century woodblock 
printed textbooks, a good selection of grey-covered government (Monbusho and 
Governer General) textbooks from 1910 to the 1940s in both Korean and 
Japanese, some 1950s books and textbooks, a few classroom charts, North 
Korean textbooks from the 1970s and 1980s. There are wonderful pictures in 
the textbooks, but I feel they are not sufficient.

We need more illustrated early material, classical Chinese texts, 
illustrated children’s magazines from the 1920s-40s, printed games, and 
other ephemera--all with distinctly Korean contents, such as pictures of 
classrooms, costume, customs and etiquette, family relationships, food, 
flags, leaders, maps.

Other priorities include material that shows aspects of the Japanese 
presence in Korea (and vice versa) from the earliest times to the end of 
WW2, the Korean War, and any form of social or political interaction with 
China, Russia, Mongolia or the USA.

I hope this gives you an idea of where we are moving.

Many thanks,

don cohn

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