The Korea Institute at Harvard has recently announced its 2007-08 Postdoctoral Fellows in Korean Studies. This year, the institute will welcome Elise Prebin and Isabelle Sancho, international specialists on Korea, and Samuel Perry, the first Korea Institute-Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies Postdoctoral Fellow, a joint appointment shared by the two centers.
Born in South Korea in 1978, Elise Prebin grew up in France and received her Ph.D. in Korean anthropology from the University of Paris X Nanterre in 2006. Her work on international adoption and divided family issues in South Korea developed new ideas in anthropology subfields such as the media, ritual, emotion, and kinship. As a postdoctoral fellow at the Korea Institute, she is translating and revising her doctoral thesis “The Spiritual Return of International Adoptees to South Korea” for publication. Prebin is also preparing a new project comparing the impact of partition on gender representations and family law in West Germany and South Korea.
Isabelle Sancho was born in 1978 in Seoul to a Korean mother and French father, and attended the French Primary School in the Korean capital. At the University of Bordeaux III, she studied Chinese as an undergraduate. She studied at the Institut National des Langues et Civilisations Orientales (INALCO) in Paris, obtaining her B.A. in Korean studies and an M.A. and postgraduate degree in Chinese classical studies. With a Korea Foundation Fellowship for European Graduate Students in Korean Studies, she obtained her Ph.D. in East Asian Studies with a specialization in classical Korean studies at INALCO in 2006. As a postdoctoral fellow at the Korea Institute, Sancho will be pursuing her research interests in Korean Neo-Confucian thought and culture of the beginning of the Chos?n period (14th-16th century), and on Korean intellectual history more broadly.
Samuel Perry, who specializes in Japanese and Korean modern literatures, earned his M.A. in East Asian languages and civilizations in 2000 and his Ph.D. in the same field in 2007 from the University of Chicago. He spent a year in Japan while completing his B.A. in East Asian studies at Brown University, and continued his language and culture studies abroad for a year in Germany and two years in Japan before commencing his graduate work at the University of Chicago. He has lived in Seoul and Hokkaido. His dissertation, titled “Aesthetics for Justice: Proletarian Literature in Japan and Colonial Korea,” explores the Japanese and Korean literary works, authors, and institutions that comprised the proletarian cultural movement of the late 1920s and early 1930s, and examines the popular genres of “the wall novel,” proletarian children’s literature, and revolutionary works critiquing capitalism, intellectualism, and patriarchy. As a joint postdoctoral fellow at the Korea Institute and Reischauer Institute, he intends to broaden his research of the literary medium to include the proletarian dramatic movement and revolutionary poetry in Japan and colonial Korea.