First Paperback Novel in Korean, Ttakjibon
Novels of this type can be classified into two groups. The first is the "social problem" novel, which dealt with societal problems or realities by exposing and criticizing societal irregularities and contradictions. The second is the "novel of manners", which placed an emphasis on changing social conventions and realistically portrayed a wide range of social aspects of that time, such as everyday life and social customs. As a result, reading social novels can help us understand the external and internal aspects of contemporary people.
Many important events in modern Korean history, such as the Donghak Peasant Movement and Gabo Reforms of 1894, the Japan-Korea Treaty of 1905 (also known as the Eulsa Treaty), and the Japan-Korea Treaty of 1910 (also known as the Japan-Korea Annexation Treaty), occurred in the early 1900s. Because the mass production of ttakjibon novels began during this turbulent era, ttakjibon novels were naturally greatly influenced by these historical events. Given the characteristics of social novels and the time period in which they were popularized, these types of ttakjibon novels were able to capture the confusion and chaos that people experienced in the midst of those historical realities.