Hello, my name is Suhyun Jeong Ahn (안정수현, 安丁秀賢), of which Jeong is my mother’s last name and my middle name. Born and grew up in Daegu, I moved to the United States in my teenage years, and I identify equally as Korean and American.
Currently, I am a second-year doctoral student in East Asian Studies at Princeton University. My research interest lies in (neo-)Confucianism in two respects: as philosophy and as political and legal thoughts. Namely, what intrigues me to Confucianism is its metaphysical and epistemological arguments in relation to the notion of governance, nationhood, (the regulation of) liberty, etc. I am also interested in political and legal philosophy independently from Confucianism, especially in relation to East Asian socio-political circumstances.
That said, my spatial and temporal scopes are quite broad. Geographically, my focus has been the Korean peninsula, but I’ve recently been drawn to China as well. Temporally, my interest is even more expansive. While Song, Ming, and Choson-period Confucianism is my main interest, understanding literature from this period requires some familiarity with Classical and pre-Classical Chinese texts. Furthermore, I’ve always been interested in how modern and contemporary thinkers and politicians use (neo-)Confucianism to justify certain forms of government, so I always feel like I’m propelled “into the future to which [my] back is turned.”
So, as you can imagine, I’ve been building a relationship with students and faculty members in the Philosophy and Politics departments. Likewise, my work as an undergraduate student was more-or-less interdisciplinary. I received a Bachelor’s degree at Tufts University, where I double-majored in Philosophy and International Literary and Visual Studies and wrote a thesis on North Korean political ideology, queer theory, and state media. However, it would be more accurate to say that I quadruple-minored in analytic philosophy, East Asian philosophy, East Asian literary and media studies, and continental philosophy/critical theory.
In my free time, I translate Korean poems into English, write short stories, take photos, and sing. I also run a Korean-English translation magazine Nabillera: Contemporary Korean Literature.
If you want to learn more about the academic and translation projects I’ve been working on and my thoughts on them, please see “Academics” or “Translation” (accessible from the menu on the left side or the three-line icon in the top right corner). If you want to see the concise list of what I’ve done, you can also download my Curriculum Vitae.