Moh Youn-sook

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Moh Yoon-sook)
Jump to: navigation, search
Moh Youn Sook
Mo Yun Sook.jpg
Born March 5, 1910
Died June 7, 1990(1990-06-07) (aged 80)
Language Korean
Nationality South Korean
Ethnicity Korean
Citizenship South Korean
Korean name
Hangul 모윤숙
This is a Korean name; the family name is Moh.

Moh Youn Sook (March 5, 1910 - June 7, 1990;[1] Korean: 모윤숙) is the best-known Korean female poet.


While young she belonged to a circle of friends which also included the alleged secret agent Kim Soo-im.[2] Though Moh is a focus of great popular admiration and critical inquiry in the Korean-speaking world, she and her work are little known abroad.

Moh Youn Sook’s pen name was Yeongun. She was born in Wonsan, Hamgyeongnam-do, on March 5, 1910. She attended Hamheung Yeongsaeng Girls' School, Hosudon Girls' School, and graduated from Ewha Technical College, majoring in Literature. She taught at Jiando Myeongsin and Baewha Girls' High schools, and was a reporter for Samcheollisa and Joongang Broadcasting Company. In 1940, she was detained at Gyeonggi-do Police Station for writing the poems "Joseonui ttal" and "I saengmyeong". After Korea gained independence from Japan, she remained active not only in literature but also in various other fields. Moh participated in the 1948 UN General Assembly as a representative of Korea; she also attended the 1954 establishment of the Korean Division of the International Pen Club, consecutively filling various posts. She served as committee chairwoman of the Korean Freedom Literary Association, head committee member of All Literature, committee chairwoman of Korean Division of International Pen Club, committee vice-chairwoman for the International Pen Club, and president of Korea's Contemporary Poetry Association. She died on June 7, 1990.[3]


Her early poetry, often criticized for indulging in facile emotionalism and sentimentalism, is marked by sharp depictions of repressed passion in direct and vivid images. Her work, however, while certainly bold, energetic, and occasionally overflowing, is not always addressed to a single beloved figure; the object of her free outpour of emotions is often the Korean nation. Her intense and often frustrated patriotism ramifies into the issues of history, national territory, nature, and provincial affairs. In 1940, Moh was still deeply involved in publications and writing, but like many of her contemporaries, she was forced to tailor her works to the political policies of the Japanese. Under oppressive colonial rule, she gradually turned to writing 'pure poetry' a poetry of pure, disembodied lyricism, containing no political, social, or historical references whatsoever. After the Liberation, however, she once again gave free rein to her patriotic impulses and composed highly inspiring patriotic pieces celebrating the prevailing nationalistic consciousness of the period.[4]

Works in Translation[edit]

  • Wren's Elegy, prose, The Pagoda, an epic & Other Poems (렌의 애가)

Works in Korean (partial)[edit]

Poetry Collections

  • Binnaneun Jiyeok
  • Okbinyeo
  • Pungnang,
  • Jeonggyeong
  • Pungto
  • Nongae
  • Mo Yunsuk Sijeonjip,
  • Gukguneun jugeoseo malhanda


  • National Outstanding Citizen's Award
  • Arts Award
  • March 1 Independence Literary Award


  1. ^ "모윤숙". Naver. Retrieved 12 November 2013.  External link in |website= (help)
  2. ^ "AP IMPACT: Truth emerges too late for Kim Soo-im". USA Today. August 17, 2008. Retrieved 2012-09-20. 
  3. ^ Source-attribution|"Mo Yunsuk" LTI Korea Datasheet available at LTI Korea Library or online at:
  4. ^ Source-attribution|"Mo Yunsuk" LTI Korea Datasheet available at LTI Korea Library or online at: