The Sketch of an Eternity Through the Arts

 Hana (Han Ji-min) visiting Kim Kwang-Seok Road in 2015 Korean Drama Hyde Jekyll, Me

Street mural featuring the song “The Love That Cannot be Spoken” on Kim Kwang-seok Road

Marcel Proust opined in his magnum opus In Search of Lost Time that memory is a critical wellspring of personal identity and the substance of all relationships. It is what restores a person to himself after a spell of unconsciousness ends and the only place where interpersonal bonds truly exist. Echoing these sentiments, psychological drama Hyde Jekyll, Me featured memory as a recurring theme in its story development. Memories defined the boundaries of the split personalities of its mentally unstable protagonist and gave life to romance. Losing an arm or a leg, one of the personalities pointed out, would not change his identity, but once his memory was gone, he would no longer exist. The inability to share memories thwarted relationship building, whereas the flow of them rekindled love. Should memories then be recovered and preserved through works of art, as Proust did with his 4211-page tome, on behalf of a person so that he can at least live on in people’s minds for generations after his demise?

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