A scholar of Korean literature and culture, HeeJin Lee’s research focuses on establishing connections between modern Korean literature and other literatures from across the world in ways that overcome colonial power dynamics inherent in various approaches to literary comparison.
Lee is currently revising a book manuscript that explores how sinsosŏl, a genre of popular vernacular fiction from early 20th century Korea, allows for creating these new transnational connections. As part of her scholarly practice, Lee is also committed to introducing literary criticism and scholarship from Korea to a wider global audience. Her latest translation — a 1940 essay on James Joyce by Ch’oe Chae-sŏ, a Korean scholar of English literature — is forthcoming in the PMLA.
Lee received her Ph.D. from UCLA (2022), her J.D. from the University of Iowa College of Law (2009), and her Bachelor of Arts from Harvard University (2005). Before joining UVA, she was a Pony Chung Fellow and Research Professor at the Research Institute of Korean Studies at Korea University in Seoul, Korea.
This academic year, Lee will offer courses on modern Korean literature, Korean cinema, and advanced-level Korean language.