Harvard Book Store presents Han Kang
Run Time: 90 min.
Harvard Book Store Presents:
in conversation with YUNG IN CHAE
Harvard Book Store welcomes HAN KANG—award-winning author of The Vegetarian and recipient of the Yi Sang Literary Award—for a discussion of her new novel Greek Lessons. She will be joined in conversation by author and former editor of Eidolon, YUNG IN CHAE. Harvard Professor of Classics, EMILY GREENWOOD will introduce the speakers.
A Return to In-Person Events
Harvard Book Store is excited to re-introduce in-person programming this season. To ensure the safety and comfort of everyone in attendance, the following Covid-19 safety protocols will be in place at all of our Brattle Theatre events until further notice:
- Face coverings are required of all staff and attendees when inside the venue. Masks must snugly cover nose and mouth. At venues where refreshments are served, attendees may briefly unmask when actively eating or drinking.
- For the time being, we will not be holding author signings at these events, in order to limit close contact. When possible, we will have pre-signed books available for purchase on-site.
There are two ticket options available for this event.
Book-Included Ticket: Includes admission for one and one hardcover copy of Greek Lessons signed by the author.
Admission-Only Ticket: Includes admission for one.
About Greek Lessons
“Now and then, language would thrust its way into her sleep like a skewer through meat, startling her awake several times a night.”
In a classroom in Seoul, a young woman watches her Greek language teacher at the blackboard. She tries to speak but has lost her voice. Her teacher finds himself drawn to the silent woman, for day by day he is losing his sight.
Soon the two discover a deeper pain binds them together. For her, in the space of just a few months, she has lost both her mother and the custody battle for her nine-year-old son. For him, it’s the pain of growing up between Korea and Germany, being torn between two cultures and languages, and the fear of losing his independence.
Greek Lessons tells the story of two ordinary people brought together at a moment of private anguish—the fading light of a man losing his vision meeting the silence of a woman who has lost her language. Yet these are the very things that draw them to each other. Slowly the two discover a profound sense of unity—their voices intersecting with startling beauty, as they move from darkness to light, from silence to breath and expression.
Greek Lessons is the story of the unlikely bond between this pair and a tender love letter to human intimacy and connection—a novel to awaken the senses, one that vividly conjures the essence of what it means to be alive.
Praise for Greek Lessons
“An incredible meditation on one woman’s abdication of language after she can no longer tolerate a world where violence is rooted even in speech.” —Cathy Park Hong, author of Minor Feelings
“Sinuous and sublime . . . an extraordinary meditation on language, violence, loss and intimacy. Han Kang is a writer like no other. In a few lines, she seems to traverse the entirety of human experience.” —Katie Kitamura, author of Intimacies
“A love letter to language, learning, and the hope of connection. It is about the mind and the body, our thoughts and our senses—about what it means to be a person in the world.” —Julia Phillips, author of Disappearing Earth
“Reading a Han Kang book is a pleasure like no other. Both poetic and deeply philosophical, Greek Lessons is a beautiful, haunting story about the fragility and power of human connection. I can’t stop thinking about it, and I don’t want to.” —Angie Kim, author of Miracle Creek and Happiness Falls
Han Kang was born in 1970 in South Korea. A recipient of the Yi Sang Literary Award, the Today’s Young Artist Award, and the Manhae Prize for Literature, she is the author of The Vegetarian, winner of the International Booker Prize, Human Acts, and The White Book.
Photo credit: Paik Dahuim
Yung In Chae
Yung In Chae is a writer from Seoul, South Korea. She is a former editor of Eidolon, an online journal for public scholarship about the classics, and the author of Goddess Power, a children’s book. She has an A.B. in Classics from Princeton and an MPhil in Classics from Cambridge, where she was a Gates Cambridge Scholar. Currently, she is pursuing a Ph.D. in History at Yale.