Suhyun J. Ahn

安 丁 秀賢

Ph.D. Candidate and Translator
Department of East Asian Studies at Princeton University
suhyun.j.ahn (at) gmail (dot) com

My research interest was neo-Confucianism (i.e., Confucianism from Song, Ming, Qing, and Joseon dynasties), metaethics, and legal philosophy. I found the aforementioned periods particularly exciting because it is when the discourse on moral metaphysics and epistemology flourished in the Confucian tradition. Though I found history relevant, my passion lied in philosophy as I was intrigued by ideas and arguments. That said, I was also interested in the contemporary relevance of Confucian philosophy in contemporary East Asian law and politics.

I passed the general examination in October 2022 and became a Ph.D. candidate. However, I am looking to have a change in my career, mainly in philosophy and law. For the time being, I have a work of research in Confucian philosophy that is under review in a peer-reviewed journal, and I will continue to work on it. I will post updates when the time comes, but if you are curious about what made me leave at this stage, please reach out to me via email.

In my free time, I translate contemporary Korean poetry for fun. I have translated Glory Hole by Kim Hyun (Seagull Books, June 2022), and I have another poetry translation project coming up in 2023. My earlier works, some of which were featured in an IB textbook and online journal, are available on AhnTranslation. I was the founder and editor-in-chief of Nabillera: Contemporary Korean Literature until I started graduate school. Before coming to Princeton, I got B.A. with summa cum laude at Tufts University, majoring in International Literary and Visual Studies (East Asian literature track) and Philosophy. I had also taken Confucianism-related seminars and courses in China and Korea and worked with neo-Confucianism specialists in Korea before enrolling in Princeton.

Fun fact: Jeong (丁) is indeed my legal middle name. It is also my mother’s last name. By coincidence, the English initial and the hanja character of my middle name look alike.