Don Mee Choi © Jay Weaver
In the artistic work of Don Mee Choi (b. 1962 in Seoul, South Korea) multi-linguality is a political gesture of resistance – of Speaking Differently and Remembering Differently – against established forms of memory and remembrance. Her experiences as a Korean-American translator and poet place her in a field of conflict of neoliberal interests, in which her texts cannot act innocently. For her, translation is the making aware of these conflicts by means of language archaeology.
In Hardly War she investigates the traumatic echoes and deep-rooted ramifications of the Korean and Vietnam wars and of American colonial policy and asks questions about their impact on her childhood and present. To do this she works both transmedially and transhistorically, sampling heterogeneous geopolitical and historical fragments and integrating postcards, drawings, sheet music and photos into her texts. These are artefacts of her father’s, who was a war photographer. In this way, Hardly War does not just reflect on the role of the camera and of observing misery and war, just as her first work, The Morning News is Exciting, also did, in an extraordinary variety of forms including opera libretto, lists and songs, but also looks at relationships with fathers, militarism, nationalism, origins and patriarchy. In 2019 Don Mee Choi is a fellow of the DAAD Artists in Berlin Programme.
Hardly War, Wave Books 2016
Freely Frayed, ㅋ=q, & Race=Nation, Wave Books Pamphlet Series 2014
Petite Manifesto, Vagabond Press Chapbook Series 2014
The Morning News is Exciting, Action Books 2010
Kim Hyesoon: Autobiography of Death, New Directions 2018
Kim Hyesoon: Poor Love Machine, Action Books 2016
Kim Hyesoon: Sorrowtoothpaste Mirrorcream, Action Books 2014
Kim Hyesoon: I’m Ok, I’m Pig, Bloodaxe Books 2014