Dictee by Theresa Hak Kyung Cha

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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.

About Theresa Hak Kyung Cha

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Theresa Hak Kyung Cha (1951-1982) was a poet, filmmaker, and artist. In 1982, Cha was murdered by a stranger in New York City, just a few days after the original publication of Dictée.
Published January 1, 1982 by Tanam Press. 179 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Publishers Weekly

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While Theresa Hak Kyung Cha's work of poetry Dictee has received due critical attention (most recently from poet Juliana Spahr), her artist's books and other art works are less well known.

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The Kenyon Review

But let’s consider an alternate approach to page 119, one in which we recast the text from the bottom of the page to the top: on his lips, time One of these days book of surprises my last sing and open his mouth slowly This reading transforms the selection of text almost entirely ...

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