Park Ji-hyun, an Icon for Women in South Korea: Bloomberg 50 2022

The Economistreported that South Korean women earn 38 percent less than their male counterparts, the largest gender pay gap of any Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development member country. Another common theory for the anti-feminist backlash points to Moon’s failure to curb youth unemployment and runaway housing prices, along with the rise in inequality. South Korea, which technically remains at war with neighboring North Korea, requires all able-bodied men ages 18 to 28 to serve at least 18 months in the military, causing delays in their education and early career that are perceived as giving women an advantage. “They believe they are being discriminated against,” Cheon Gwan-yul, the journalist who led the survey, said at the time. Like opponents of feminism in other parts of the world, respondents argued that the movement promotes female supremacy and misandry.

In 1945, this primary school gained its status as a university, which is now called Ewha Womans University. Ewha Womans University is still known as the most prestigious women’s university in South Korea.

“If you find gender equality and feminism so important, you can do it with your own money and time,” said one lawmaker in his party. President Yoon Suk-yeol, elected last year, has suggested feminism is to blame for blocking “healthy relationships” between men and women. But he’s got it backward — gender equality is the solution to falling birthrates.

  • He gained popularity through expressly anti-feminist views that garnered the support of disaffected young male voters.
  • Yet this feminist dream seems increasingly far-fetched, as Mr. Yoon’s conservative government champions regressive policies that only magnify the problem.
  • As a Premium user you get access to the detailed source references and background information about this statistic.

Women artists described the objective reality of women’s oppression and featured the realities from a variety of feminist perspectives. In 1985, the National Committee on Women’s Policies adopted the “Master Plan for Women’s Development” and the “Guidelines for the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women” as government policies. In 1946 the Women’s Affairs Bureau of the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs was opened as the first governmental office to deal with the growing needs and problems of women.

South Korea: Supreme Court ruling on legal gender recognition an important step forward for transgender rights

These changes all attest to the fact that Korean women, given opportunities, can develop their potential and make significant contributions to society. “Women’s development” means the increase in their economic participation and equal opportunity and equal treatment at work force, as well as the discarding of the discriminatory perception of women in society. And it means that women, as members of society, should take equal responsibility and share equal burdens for the society where legal and social system backed up equally to women. Women’s social participation became active in Korean society and the social recognition of women’s rights and roles have changed. The developmental changes have been due to the enlargement of women’s roles based on social change, the elevation of the level of education, and familial change, but most of all change has been due to the strong demands by women seeking development for themselves.

New women’s groups were formed and previously existing ones were reorganized and invigorated to contribute to a variety of fields such as politics, social affairs, religion, education, and social service. In the 712-page World Report 2023, its 33rd edition, Human Rights Watch reviews human rights practices in close to 100 countries. In her introductory essay, acting Executive Director Tirana Hassan says that in a world in which power has shifted, it is no longer possible to rely on a small group of mostly Global North governments to defend human rights.

While representation increased in response, equality was not immediately achieved. Before 1988, female soldiers had to resign if they became pregnant, as pregnant women were considered unfit for duty. Because of the Equal Employment Law of 1988, pregnancy is now permitted for all commissioned officers, and non-commissioned officers with a rank of sergeant first class or higher.

Share of women in the parliament South Korea 2005-2022

The Korean Constitution was amended in 1987, introducing a new clause on the duty of the State to promote women’s welfare and equality. The Equal Employment Opportunity Law drafted by the then government in 1987, went into effect in 1988. With a view to safeguard the security and welfare of single-mother households, the government enacted the Mother-Child Welfare Law in 1989. In 1963 there were 2,835,000 economically active women among a total female population of 7,670,000 aged 15 years and older and the percentage was 37.0 percent. The problems and barriers that women have faced should be recognized as social problems and should be resolved through national concern and policies. This will lead the development of women and therefore of the society and of the country.

Not to mention the violence itself, but in addition to that, victims often receive unjust treatment from legal institutions. Although social awareness may be heightened after the #MeToo movement, there still is a long way to go to implement material and structural changes. The increasing presence of women and the changes in Korean society have brought the government to the realization that it must develop new policies for women. By a presidential decree, the National Committee on Women’s Policies was formed in 1983. In compliance with the changing social environment, the government established the Ministry of Political Affairs to handle women’s matters in 1988. In the same year, 15 Family Welfare Bureaus with women directors were also established at the provincial government level. Women, who had been up to this moment for hundreds of years of history confined to the extended family, began to realize their own rights and some women leaders worked to construct various organizations.

Women in the military

Society can’t end the birth strike without acknowledging women’s grievances, she says. The government is also working to dismantle its own headquarters for women’s empowerment — the gender equality ministry. Established in 2001, it’s been transformative in normalizing parental leave for fathers and helping more women achieve workplace seniority. South Korean women largely must choose between career and family, with The Economist’s glass-ceiling index ranking it the worst country in the OECD for working women in 2022. Strict maternity leave policies at workplaces are one of the reasons for South Korea’s alarmingly low fertility rate at 0.8 children per woman — the lowest in the world, according to The World Bank. What it’s like to be a woman in South Korea, where anti-feminism is rampant Many men in South Korea claim to be victims of gender discrimination, a movement turbocharged by President Yoon. Meanwhile, women lag far behind men in pay and face unrealistic beauty standards.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *