Daily lives of Korean women at lecture seriesThe role of women in Korean society has grown by leaps and bounds over the past half century, owing in large part to increased educational opportunities for women.
Ewha Womans University of Seoul has helped lead the way, producing many students who have gone on to become leaders in society. Many first ladies studied at Ewha.
In this spirit, the school is sponsoring a lecture series on Korean women aimed at expatriate women living in Korea.
The University’s Asian Center for Women’s Studies will sponsor the series “Women’s Changing Roles in the Public and Private Spheres,” running from Oct. 2 through Nov. 6. In all, five lectures will be given by various women’s rights activists and scholars. A film presentation and roundtable discussion will be part of the final lecture on Nov. 6.
“Expatriate women in Korea do not get much exposure to ordinary women living in Korea,” says Kang Yun-ju, the program coordinator. “These lectures are aimed at giving a realistic look at the lives women lead and their true selves.”
Oh Han Sook-hee, the renowned feminist writer and speaker, will participate for the second time. She will lead the lecture “Relationships between Spouses.”
Other topics include “Women and Sexuality in Korea” and “The Women’s Movement in Korea.” These lectures have been held twice a year in the spring and fall since 1996.
The focus of the lectures, according to Ewha’s Asian Center, is not just providing information on a range of topics related to women in Korea, but also fostering discussion and debate among participants and helping develop an international network of women in Korea. Past participants have included the wives of corporate executives, foreign businesswomen and lecturers.
Although the lecture topics change every year, the basic theme of opening a window to the daily routines of average Korean women has always remained. “Our goal is to have more and more expatriates participate in this program, to foster a broader understanding of Korean women and the changes that have occurred in the past,” Ms. Kang says.
Participation for the entire lecture series costs 120,000 won ($100).
by Choi Jie-ho
For more information, call (02) 3277-3613, or go to http//ews.ewha.ac.kr or www.wsasia.net.