An Introduction to the translation of “The Hypercube Records,” “Slaughterhouse Vigil” by Kakyung Baek from the Korean by Archana Madhavan

Archana Madhavan’s translation of Kakyung Baek’s “The Hypercube Records” reads like falling into a surrealist dream where scientific precision meets childlike imagination, as Children X, Y, and Z play to understand the concept of “three-dimensions” against the backdrop of the Bureau. In “Slaughterhouse Vigil,” the elephant, the clown, and the audience look and glance away at the carnival of performance, consumption, and judging. The non-punctuated lines add to a sense of disembodiment and fluidity in this selection of poems presented by Tupelo Quarterly.


백가경 (Kakyung Baek)

Kakyung Baek is a South Korean writer and poet. She made her literary debut with the poem “The Hypercube Records” in 2022, which won her the Kyunghyang Shinmun New Writer’s Award. Baek has published poetry influenced by the works of feminist thinkers and activists in the Korean literary journals Korean Modern Poetry, Gyegan Munye, Haksan Munhak, and more. She is currently finishing her first full-length poetry collection.


Archana Madhavan

Archana Madhavan is a literary translator from Korean into English. Her first book-length work is a co-translation of Glory Hole by Kim Hyun (Seagull Books, 2022). Her other poetry and prose translations have appeared in Modern Poetry In Translation, The Columbia Journal, The Puritan, and more. In 2022, Archana was selected as the Korean poetry mentee for the ALTA Emerging Translator Mentorship Program. She resides in San Jose, California.