[KS] About Park Ryol

Frank Hoffmann frank at koreaweb.ws
Tue Sep 12 19:28:39 EDT 2006

Park Rrrrryol, that doesn't exactly conform with 
the Republican transcription system, does it? You 
can take the term  t'ujaeng quite literally, 
meaning combat, fight -- used to refer to fights 
with military means, or later, in mainland China, 
also to ideological struggle (e.g. against 
political enemies within). You will find many 
Communist leaflets from the 1930s and 1940s with 
"t'ujaeng" in the title, and there are even a 
couple of "Bloody Struggle Histories of ..." the 
anti-Japanese movement that were published in 
South Korea between 1945 and 1949. After that the 
term has rarely been used in the South, but 
continued to be in high regard in the North and 
in Mao's China. Although I would not associate 
the term to Hitler's book. "Kampf" may well be 
translated as "t'ujaeng," that seems a good 
choice, in this case. Then again, "Kampf" is a 
much more neutral word in German, not at all as 
defined as "t'ujaeng," and by no means 
necessarily referring to military or militant 

I doubt that Pak Yôl published a text with such 
title, _Naûi t'ujaeng_, at least not in South 
Korea or during the colonial period. The 
anarchist journals and publications that the 
circle around Prof. Ha Ki-rak (I think he passed 
away) is publishing in T'aegu would sure have 
reproduced such text, but I never even saw a 
reference to it. The title would indicate that 
the text, if it exists, was likely published in 
North Korea. Am I wrong? Then again, I doubt it 
is a book -- maybe just a short article. Pak was 
not an intellectual, not a leader either, he 
didn't write much. There are others who did, like 
mentioned Ha Ki-rak or Chông Hwa-am, or Yu 
Cha-myông from the Korean minority in China. Even 
Yu Su-in who was once Ba Jin's Esperanto teacher 
and who returned to North Korea (from China) in 
the 1950s has left a long trace of publications 
in both Chinese and Korean from the 1920s to his 
death. (His grandson once showed me a 5000 pages 
manuscript about the anarchist movement that he 
had written.) Pak, on the other hand, had his day 
of fame when he and his lover Kaneko were picked 
by the Japanese authorities after the Kanto Earth 
Quake to go on trial -- as a representative for 
all Koreans in Japan, and as an indirect 
justification of the massacres that had happened 
in the aftermath of the earth quake.

All there seems to be by Pak Yôl himself are 
poems he wrote in prison, published  in the 
popular left-wing magazine _Samchôlli_ (no. 14, 
December 1949) [just saw the reference, haven't 
seen them yet]: "Naûi okchung chap'yông" 
(Miscellaneous poems from my time in jail). The 
term "chap'yông," by the way, seems to be a 
neo-Japonism. I could only find it in a Japanese 

Since you mention Kaneko Fumiko (1903-1926) -- 
her autobiography, written in prison, for the 
trial, as was usual in the Japanese legal system 
at the time, is a full-fleged book (250 pp. in 
English translation). It is an absolutely amazing 
account! Very well written, extremely mature for 
a twenty year old woman, a woman who grew up 
under depressingly poor circumstances in Japan 
and Korea, and as sensitive and politically 
engaging as an autobiography can possibly be.
--> _The Prison Memoirs of a Japanese Woman_ (ISBN: 0873328027)


>I was interested to see that KBS recently 
>prepared a documentary drama about Kaneko 
>Fumiko, the 'lover' of the Korean anarchist Park 
>Yol. I have heard that Park published an account 
>of his activities (I assume after being freed 
>from prison in 1945?) and some give the title as 
>'na ui tujaeng' (the same Korean as Mein 
>Kampf!!!) but I am unable (with my meagre 
>patience) to track this work. Can I ask if 
>anyone knows of it, and where it mmight be 
>found? I would be most grateful.
>Brother Anthony
>Sogang University, Seoul

Frank Hoffmann

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