S-Space Kyujanggak Institute for Korean Studies (규장각한국학연구원) Korean Culture (한국문화) Korean Culture (한국문화) vol.38 (2006)
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 규장각한국학연구원
- 한국문화, Vol.38, pp. 1-29
- The goal of this paper is to conduct an historical investigation into the author and time of authorship of Macheonbyeolgok(瑪川別曲), to examine the authorial consciousness and characteristics of the work, and to determine the significance of Macheonbyeolgok in the history of poetry.
Kim Yanggeun"s (金養根:1734～1799) Dongyajip(東埜集) reveals that the author of Macheonbyeolgok is Yi Seop(李涉:1661～1738). The information on Yi Seop"s life and works also provides historical evidence that he wrote Macheonbyeolgok in 1720, at the age of 60. Macheonbyeolgok describes a beautiful village that the author enters to enjoy the spring scenery and conveys his thoughts as he surveys the relics left by his ancestors and sits at the top of the Mangcheon Cliffs. There are a number of clear poetic sentiments, such as the part where he sits atop the Mangcheon Cliffs and pours out his rage at the Manchu Invasion[丙子胡亂] of 1636, the part that expresses the grief of a country scholar who cannot discuss the affairs of the state, and the part that sighs over the realistic worries of having to leave one"s hometown.
The reverence for the Zhou Dynasty of China, which dominated Yi Seop"s consciousness and was an influential idea at the time, is plainly reflected in Macheonbyeolgok. For other poets, the Mangcheon Cliffs were a place to enjoy the scenery and leisure, but for Yi Seop they were a place to express his rage over the Manchu Invasion. Macheonbyeolgok was not written while enjoying the scenery and leisure, so there is almost no description of the beautiful view and worries over historical events and realistic problems are the main sentiments.
Considering that most late Joseon gasa works whose authors are known express either satisfaction in everyday life or the ideal life of a scholar, the frank expression of realistic worry and the attempts of a country scholar to deal with the turbulent flow of history embodied in Macheonbyeolgok are noteworthy. Through Macheonbyeolgok, we can see how the genre of gasa in the late Joseon period dealt with the changing of the times and sought a unique change even as it carried on the tradition of early Joseon gasa literature.