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General Introduction to Busan International Literature Festival

The Busan International Literature Festival is a gathering of poets, prose writers, dramatists and essayists, and literature professors sponsored by the city of Busan and organized by the Busan Writers' Association. The festival, which is the only international literature festival in Korea, takes place annually in the Busan Art Center and at other venues in Busan.

Since its inception in 2012, the pinnacle of the festival has been the keynote speech given by a prominent figure in literature or humanities on a topic related to the annual theme.

The festival also features numerous literary and cultural activities including round-table discussions, literary readings, a book fair, poetry recital, symposia, presentations of contemporary literatures and literary publications, etc.

During one of the several literary readings, the symposium participants will present extracts of their writing in the original as well as in the Korean translation. This experience provides many opportunities for in-depth debates, while social events provide a casual atmosphere for socializing and networking.

The invited speakers and guests are financially supported by the city of Busan. We cordially welcome all the participants.

Cho Kyung Keun

Director, the working committee of BILF

Welcome Greeting

It is with great pleasure that I open the first Busan International Literature Festival today in the presence of many of Busan's literary figures and leading lights. From today, many scholars and critics from various countries around the world will join under the theme of restoring humanity and the role of literature to give presentations and hold discussions together.

Literature can be defined as a tool for restoring humanity, which seems to be being gradually destroyed due to the failure of communication within modern society. Literature should be able to assist society to create a happy and healthy place for us to live in. I hope and believe that this festival, with the theme of "Restoring Humanity and Literature" can play an important role in making the world a better place in which to live.

During the festival, there will be a performance of . It tells the story of a small ancient country, Jangsanguk, which is originated from the current Jangsan area in the east of Busan. It was first produced as a poetic play, however it will be performed today as a musical for our honored guests from other countries. I hope you enjoy the performance.

In closing, I would like to thank the Mayor of Busan, Hur, Nam-sik, the President of Busan City Council the Diretor of Busan Art Association. and thank you to you all and most especially we welcome once again all the scholars and literary figures in Busan and from abroad who are here to participate at this important festival.

Ms. Jeung, Young-ja
Director Counsel Committee of BILF