Sunday, March 13, 2011

Recent Books that makes tremendous change !

Modern and Traditional Korean Games and Sports

Karl Randall; Hollym: 144 pp., 12,000 won

Korean folk games and sports are diverse and well known but they are not actually practiced that often among modern Koreans, except on special festival days. Also, the details of their history and how to perform them are little known in English.

The book, written in English, is a useful reference for both Koreans and foreigners who are interested in Korean folk games and sports.

Consisting of three parts ― games of old, such as kite-flying and sledding; board and card games, such as Korean chess and go; and martial arts and sports, such as taekwondo, the book offers an introduction to provide a wide overview of the games and sports in each part, along with illustrations.

Each includes the historical background and evolution that shows how and why it became unique to Korea or otherwise important to local culture. It includes an explanation of any equipment and instructions on how to play.

The book is considered as something that gives important clues for readers to understand the core of Korean traditional culture.

30-Second Philosophies

Barry Loewer et al; Translated from English to Korean by Lee Jae-young; Open House: 264pp., 14,800 won

Philosophy can be a scary subject, especially if you don’t know where to start. Related books tend to scare readers with philosophers and their interests on existence, knowledge, values and other ambiguous subjects, but a new book by philosophy professor Barry Loewer is hoping to change that.

The new book ``30-second Philosophies’’ deals with 50 different theories that have changed the world and affected so many. Divided into seven categories, including ``Language and Logic,’’ ``Science and Epistemology’’ and ``Mind and Metaphysics,’’ the book offers them in the easiest way possible.

Each theory is covered in one and a half pages that are supposed to be read in about 30 seconds. Since its purpose is to introduce and help readers get used to the intangible theories, ``30-second Philosophies’’ may not be enough to satisfy those who are looking for more in depth information. Nevertheless, the book is a breath of fresh air and will certainly assist those who wish to delve into the world of Aristotle or Immanuel Kant but need to start with something light.

Morning Glory

Diana Peterfreund; Translated from English to Korean by Lee So-eun; Gimm-Young Publishers: 360 pp., 12,000 won

Diana Peterfreund’s “Morning Glory” has been translated into Korean to coincide with the release of the film adaptation here (titled “Good Morning Everyone”).

The film, starring the charming Rachel McAdams opposite Diane Keaton and Harrison Ford, has been praised by the New York Observer as being “the smartest, sharpest, funniest and most consistently entertaining comedy since ‘The Devil Wears Prada.’”

Becky struggles to find employment after losing her job as the producer of a suburban morning show. She’s already sent out a pile of applications and called in a number of favors.

While waiting for responses, the young woman spends her time binging on world news and lamenting about her stale romantic life. Then one day it seems like nothing short of a miracle when she gets a call from a major network in New York.

But she soon realizes the reality of trying to succeed in the big city. Their program “Daybreak” suffers all-time low ratings and the jaded anchors show no sign of wanting to cooperate. Will Becky be able to survive these new challenges and make it in the big city?

On Food and Cooking

Harold McGee; Translated from English to Korean by Lee Hee-gun; After 100 Years Publishing: 1,326 pp., 78,000 won

Harold McGee's "On Food and Cooking: The Science and Lore of the Kitchen" is now available in Korean. This is a revised edition of the 1984 book “McGee on Food and Cooking: An Encyclopedia of Kitchen Science, History and Culture.”

The book is full of facts on food and cooking, covering from why fish is white and flaky while meat is red to why wine should be stored laid down.

Korean food and ingredients, such as kimchi, doenjang and salted seafood, often appear in the book. A wider cultural view to these foods has been applied and unlikely or unique connections are made between foods such as sauerkraut of Germany and anchovies.
Biochemist Kang Chul-hoon and chef Suh Seung-ho were consulted for the translation.

This book won the James Beard KitchenAid Book Award and the IACP Cookbook Awards in 2005.
Source: KoreaTimes

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