Pak Kyongni spent a third of her life living in Wonju from 1980 to 2008. During those 28 years, not only did she complete Parts Four and Five of the majestic saga Land but she also published a number of poetry collections (The Boat That Cannot Sail Away, Cats in the City, and Our Time) along with some essay collections (Delusions for a Hypothesis and The Agony of Life). The poetry collection Lighthearted, I’m Left with Only What I Shall Leave Behind was published posthumously. Throughout her life and literary career, Pak Kyongni advocated for equality among all living beings based on her philosophy of life and took an active interest in environmental issues. Her “interest theory” argued that human beings live off of the interest earned from nature. Pak also founded and chaired the Toji Cultural Center for the purpose of cultivating artistic and literary talent.
The Toji Cultural Foundation, together with the city of Wonju and Gangwon Province, hosts several annual events in honor of Pak Kyongni’s literary achievements and her philosophy of life. Every year since 2010, Pak Kyongni Literature Festival has been held in October. The festival program includes the Pak Kyongni Prize Award Ceremony, literary forums, the Youth Writing Contest, musicals, and concerts.
The Scent of Literature
By exploring the key principles of nature and life, the Toji Cultural Foundation aims to promote and preserve active literary thought as a means of fostering and nurturing the creative spirits of young people in the twenty-first century. To this end, the Toji Cultural Foundation organizes a number of programs throughout the year including literary forums, readings, Youth Literature Camp, and book concerts.
Address: Maejihoechongil 79 (570 Maeji-ri), Heungeop-myeon, Wonju-si, Gangwon-do
Phone: 033-762-1382 / 033-762-5544
The Pak Kyongni Prize Award Ceremony
Each year Pak Kyongni Prize is awarded to one author who has made a distinguished contribution to world literature. The award ceremony take place on the last Saturday in October every year.
On the last Friday and Saturday in October every year, literary forums are held to examine and shed new light on the works of Pak Kyongni.
Youth Writing Contest
Those who take part in the Youth Writing Contest are encouraged to take a step closer to realizing their dreams through writing. The contest is open to students from primary, middle, and high schools across the country, as well as those in the same age group who are either home-schooled or attend alternative schools. The final round takes place on the third Saturday in October every year, and the winners are announced on the same day.
A Walk in the Hoechon Woods
A walk in the Hoechon woods with writers-in-residence at the Toji Cultural Center is held in morning of the second Saturday in October every year.
Pak Kyongni Recitation Contest
In the afternoon of the second Saturday in every October, participants in the Pak Kyongni Recitation Contest are invited to read aloud their favorite sentences from any work by Pak Kyongni.
A musical or a play written and directed by Kim Min-ki is performed in the afternoon of the third Saturday in every October.
On the eve of the Pak Kyongni Prize Award Ceremony, Geum Nan-sae and the Eurasian Philharmonic Orchestra’s concert is held in the Baekwun Art Hall in Wonju.
- Hosted by the Toji Cultural Foundation, the Pak Kyongni Prize Committee, Wonju City, Gangwon Province, and the Dong-A Ilbo
- Sponsored by Maronie Books and Yonsei University
- With the help of Picture Book City