The Trickster in Korean Mythology


Charles D. La Shure (Seoul National University)

The trickster figure, whether in folktales or myth, is characterized by a liminal nature; he or she is a being that lives on the borders between worlds. There are a number of trickster figures in Korean mythology that express this liminality differently from their cousins in Korean folktales, or indeed even from other trickster gods around the world. A distinction must also be made between the trickster as he or she appears in foundation myths and in shamanic myths. An examination of the differences between these figures will shed light on the function of these myth types in Korean history and society.

Part of 28-02 Folkloristic Work on Myth: Trends, Developments, and Tricksters, Tuesday, October 19, 8:45 pm–10:15 pm