Emily Jungmin Yoon is a Korean Canadian poet who wrestles with history. Producers Jake and Sara join Emily to talk about her debut full-length poetry collection, A Cruelty Special to Our Species which explores the history of Korean “comfort women” during World War II. Through different perspectives and voices, Yoon documents the painful—and often silenced—stories of comfort women, or the “women who were forced into sexual labor” by Japanese soldiers occupying Korea.
In wrenching language, A Cruelty Special to our Species unforgettably describes the brutalities of war and the fear and sorrow of those whose lives and bodies were swept up by a colonizing power, amplifying the voices of an oppressed group of people whose histories have often been erased and overlooked. "What is a body in a stolen country?" Yoon asks. "What is right in war?" She also looks at how trauma from past generations can inhabit a person, and stay with them forever.