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Fire Anger

Korean Title:

Acrylic on canvas




In March of 2004 a young, emerging artist named Lee, EunSong was to open her photography exhibition in Insadong, the Arts district of Seoul, South Korea. It was an exhibition that spoke of the sexual abuse Korean women suffered at the hands of the Japanese during the 1940’s occupation of Korea. The old women rallied in protest and were finally able to convince the government to step in and destroy all of the collection because it was too horrific of a memory for them to bear. The entire collection was burnt in the street that day.

A friend of mine, one of the few practicing Korean psychiatrists, told me that women of that age suffer a condition known as fire anger, loosely translated. It is a direct result of repressing just such horrific memories