Organized Panel Session
South Korean filmmaker Kim Kiyoung (1919-1998) is famous for his horror and thriller films filled with unique style of excess and strong theme of obsession. This presentation shifts attention to Kim’s “Soil,” [Hŭk], an under-examined 1978 literary film adaptation based on Yi Kwangsu’s 1932 novel. I approach the film as a key text that allegorically engages with the state promulgation of the developmentalist ideology of the 1970s. I explore several questions that relate to the film’s incisive view on workings of ideology under the authoritarian regime: namely, the relationship between cultural nationalist discourse of enlightenment and the state rural revitalization campaign; Kim’s film authorship and the reward film policy, (i.e., munye yŏnghwa), as well as the colonial representation in literature and film media. In particular, I concentrate on Kim’s elaborate construction on the domestic mise-en-scene that dramatizes and enhances the tension between the conjugal relationship and personal devotion for a social campaign. In the end, this essay casts light at the way in which Kim, while working within the rigid system of censorship and conformity, advances an elaborate critique on the cultural nationalism which undergirds the workings of the dominant ideology of developmentalism.