Added: July 20, 2013 – Last updated: December 5, 2015


Author: Joshua D. Pilzer

Title: Hearts of Pine

Subtitle: Songs in the Lives of Three Korean Survivors of the Japanese "Comfort Women"

Place: New York

Publisher: Oxford University Press

Year: 2012

Pages: xv + 191pp.

ISBN-13: 9780199759569 (cloth) – Find a Library: Wikipedia, WorldCat | ISBN-13: 9780199759576 (paper) – Find a Library: Wikipedia, WorldCat

Language: English

Keywords: Modern History: 20th Century | Asian History: Japanese History, Korean History | Cases: Victims: Bae Chunhui, Mun Pilgi, Pak Duri | Representations: Music; Types: Forced Prostitution / "Comfort Women"; Types: Wartime Rape / Asia-Pacific War



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Author: Joshua D. Pilzer, Faculty of Music, University of


  Preface (p. ix)
  A Note on Transliteration (p. xvii)
  About the Companion Website (p. xix)
  Introduction (p. 3)
  Beginnings (p. 15)
  Pak Duri (p. 31)
  Mun Pilgi (p. 67)
  Bae Chunhui (p. 105)
  Epilogue (p. 141)
  Appendix: Pak Duri's Testimony (p. 145)
  Notes (p. 155)
  Bibliography (p. 169)
  Discography (p. 175)
  Index (p. 177)

Description: »In the wake of the Asia-Pacific War, Korean survivors of the "comfort women" system-those bound into sexual slavery for the Japanese military during the war-lived under great pressure not to speak about what had happened to them. Hearts of Pine brings us into the lives of three such survivors: Pak Duri, Mun Pilgi, and Bae Chunhui. Over the course of eight years, author Joshua Pilzer worked with these now-elderly women, smoking with them, eating with them, singing and playing with them, trying to understand and document their worlds of song. During four decades of secrecy and the subsequent decades of the "comfort women" protest movement, singing served these women as a means of coping with and expressing their experiences, forging and sustaining identities and social relationships, and recording and conveying their struggles and philosophies of life. Through these intimate portraits, Hearts of Pine illustrates the personal and social power of music vis-à-vis other expressive media, models a humanistic history of modern Korean music, and presents heretofore unrecorded histories of the "comfort women" system and postwar South Korean public culture written in women's song.« (Source: Oxford University Press)

Lecture: Pilzer, Joshua D. »Hearts of Pine: Songs in the Lives of Three Korean Survivors of the Japanese "Comfort Women".« The Korea Society. New York 2012.


Chung, Haeng-Ja. Asian Studies Review 37(4) (2013): 598-599. – Full Text: Taylor & Francis Online (Restricted Access)

Ferrarese, Marco. Popular Music and Society 38(2) (2013): 265-267. – Full Text: Taylor & Francis Online (Restricted Access)

Hill, Andrew. H-War (April 2013). – Full Text: H-Net Reviews (Free Access)

Howard, Keith. Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies 76(1) (February 2013): 182-184. – Full Text: Cambridge Journals (Restricted Access)

Kim, Joy S. The Journal of Asian Studies 72(1) (February 2013): 217-218. – Full Text: Cambridge Journals (Restricted Access)

Kwon, Donna L. Ethnomusicology 58(1) (Winter 2014): 159-163. – Full Text: JSTOR (Restricted Access)

Lorenz, Shanna. MUSICultures: Revue de la Société canadienne pour les traditions musicales / Journal of the Canadian Society for Traditional Mucis 42(1) (2015). – Full Text: University of New Brunswick Libraries (Restricted Access)

Mueller, Ruth. Notes: Quarterly Journal of the Music Library Association 70(1) (September 2013): 103-104. – Full Text: Project MUSE (Restricted Access)

Payette, Jessica. »From Angry Anthems to Tragic Teuroteu: Listening to the Recalibration of Selfhood in Songs of Korean Sexual Trauma Survivors.« Women and Music: A Journal of Gender and Culture 17 (2013): 81-91. – Full Text: Project MUSE (Restricted Access)

Website: Hearts of Pine companion website

Wikipedia: History of Asia: History of Japan, History of Korea / Korea under Japanese rule | Prostitution: Forced prostitution / Comfort women | Types of rape: Wartime sexual violence | War: Pacific War / Japanese war crimes