Table for One: Stories (Weatherhead Books on Asia) (Paperback)

Table for One: Stories (Weatherhead Books on Asia) By Ko-Eun Yun, Lizzie Buehler (Translator) Cover Image

Table for One: Stories (Weatherhead Books on Asia) (Paperback)

By Ko-Eun Yun, Lizzie Buehler (Translator)


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An office worker who has no one to eat lunch with enrolls in a course that builds confidence about eating alone. A man with a pathological fear of bedbugs offers up his body to save his building from infestation. A time capsule in Seoul is dug up hundreds of years before it was intended to be unearthed. A vending machine repairman finds himself trapped in a shrinking motel during a never-ending snowstorm.

In these and other indelible short stories, contemporary South Korean author Yun Ko-eun conjures up slightly off-kilter worlds tucked away in the corners of everyday life. Her fiction is bursting with images that toe the line between realism and the fantastic. Throughout Table for One, comedy and an element of the surreal are interwoven with the hopelessness and loneliness that pervades the protagonists' decidedly mundane lives. Yun's stories focus on solitary city dwellers, and her eccentric, often dreamlike humor highlights their sense of isolation. Mixing quirky and melancholy commentary on densely packed urban life, she calls attention to the toll of rapid industrialization and the displacement of traditional culture. Acquainting the English-speaking audience with one of South Korea's breakout young writers, Table for One presents a parade of misfortunes that speak to all readers in their unconventional universality.
Yun Ko-eun is the award-winning author of three novels and three short story collections. Born in 1980, she lives in Seoul. Lizzie Buehler is a translator from Korean and an MFA student in literary translation at the University of Iowa.

Product Details ISBN: 9780231192033
ISBN-10: 0231192037
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Publication Date: April 9th, 2024
Pages: 256
Language: English
Series: Weatherhead Books on Asia