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Yom Sang-seop was born in 1897 in Seoul, and in 1912, he went to Japan to study. In 1919, he participated in an independence movement against the Japanese, for which he was jailed. He published his first stories, Hakjigwang and Samgwang in the same year. In 1920, he returned to Korea to become political reporter for Donga Ilbo and start a literary magazine called Pyeheo. In 1931, he published Samdae (Three Generations) as a serial in Chosun Ilbo, followed by many novels and stories. Yom left Korea for Manchuria in 1936, and became editor-in-chief at Manseon Ilbo there. He returned to Seoul in 1946 and became the editor-in-chief at Kyeonghyang Shinmun, but quit the following year to concentrate on teaching and writing. In 1953, he received the Seoul Culture Award, followed by the Asia Freedom Literature Award in 1956, and the National Academy of Arts' Contribution Award in 1957. In 1962, he received the March 1st Culture Award and the Korean President's medal. He died of cancer in 1963.