Hannah Baek

Hannah_Baek_027Hannah Baek is a junior from Seattle studying language and modernity at Gallatin. Combing through linguistics, philosophy, literature, film, and Asian American Studies, she investigates how language serves and fails us, especially as explored by the traditions of postmodernism, existentialism, absurdism, and Orientalism. With a long background in black and white film photography, she has become especially interested in the nonverbal potential of cinematic language.

Upon misinterpreting a fact about gravity, a young man suddenly wonders whether he would fall to the ground faster than would a loaf of bread. In this simple analogy of testing whether the body “means” any more than a loaf of bread, the protagonist of Whole Wheat Man enters into a question of whether humanity holds meaning at all. Like the existentialists and postmodernists, bleeding from their pens, who have tried for the past century to express this alarming, shattering, dissolving awareness of the relative significance of life, I hope his story—so naïve and simple, purposely wordless, and imagistic—may bring us to his discovery just as earnest and unprepared.