My Anthem

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


In Season 5, of The West Wing, episode 4 is titled "Han", depicting a Korean word. It narrates about a potential defection of a renowned pianist from North Korea scheduled to perform at the White House and Chief of Staff Leo McGarry fears this poential defection will jeopardise secret nuclear disarmament talks between the US and North Korea.

President Bartlet whispers to the pianist at a rehearsal that his Government cannot accept his "request for defection" but that "freedom implies choice" and only he (the artiste) can decide for himself.

But when the pianist ends his concert with the official line of "thanking his host and looking to more cultural exchanges between our countries", Bartlet latershares with the deputy chief of staff, Josh Lyman: "The pianist obviously did not understand what freedom, and choice, means.

"There is a Korean word, Han, which I looked up -- It has no exact English equivalent.
It is a state of mind, close to the soul of an individual, resembling Sadness. Deep, inexplicable state of mind -- this sadness."


Helen said...

Han for this country...

Teacher can or not?

desiderata said...

Yes, helen, "Han for our NegaraKu..."and that's sad....
May God help us awe, whether teacher or pupil. -- Amen