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‘Seattle City of Literature’ Sends Two Local Writers to Korea for Residency Programs

by Chamidae Ford


Last month, two Seattle writers were selected to participate in writer residency programs in Korea which will begin this fall. Jeanine Walker will be Wonju City of Literature’s inaugural writer in residence for six weeks while Takami Nieda will be in Bucheon for four weeks. 

The residencies are offered through the partnership among UNESCO Cities of Literature. Seattle was named a UNESCO City of Literature in 2017 and the local program is run by Seattle City of Literature, a nonprofit dedicated to supporting Seattle’s vibrant literary community and connecting that community with the rest of the world. 

Bucheon also received the title of a UNESCO City of Literature in 2017. Soyoung Jung, the coordinator for the Bucheon City of Literature, feels the history of the city makes it the perfect place to receive that title. Bucheon grew rapidly during the 1970s and ’80s during Korea’s industrialization and has developed a community very involved with improving lives through knowledge.

“People were gathered together and they were anxious and very eager to learn things,” Jung said. “Many movements, like social and labor movements, were very active in those areas. So we really have that kind of strong heritage about thinking radically and thinking socially about how to make an inclusive society.”

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