Reading List: The Lesbian Rights Movement and Feminism in South Korea

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If you read this blog, I’m sure you are aware that it is rather focused on gay men. I want to apologize. I try to be inclusive, but there is so much more information about gay men than other members of the queer spectrum. That’s quite shitty, huh? If any of my readers want to contribute their voice to this blog, please do!

If you read this blog, I’m sure you are aware that it is rather focused on gay men. I want to apologize. I try to be inclusive, but there is so much more information about gay men than other members of the queer spectrum. That’s quite shitty, huh? If any of my readers want to contribute their voice to this blog, please do!

If I’m talking about lesbians, I need to mention SoGayShiDae

I did find an article today about lesbianism in Korea. Soo Jin Park-Kim, Soo Young Lee-Kim, Eun Jung Kwon-Lee are the authors of The Lesbian Rights Movement and Feminism in South Korea, which was Published in Lesbians in East Asia: Diversity, Identities, and Resistance in 2006. Here is the summary.

The lesbians’ rights movement in South Korea has undertaken various projects for solidarity with feminist movement groups for over 10 years. In spite of these efforts, lesbian issues have been blatantly excluded from all the agendas of women’s rights. The same thing has happened in Women’s Studies. Some feminists express homophobic thoughts without understanding the reality of lesbians, and other young scholars take on a lesbian identity temporarily as a sign of being progressive and liberated; in neither situation are they committed to dealing with the oppression of lesbians or seeing lesbian rights as a feminist concern. In order to further lesbian rights there are two strategies possible: forming a movement only for lesbians or forming solidarity with feminists. In the latter case, a concern about lesbian rights will help achieve the goals of a true feminism as patriarchy is built upon heterosexism.  

The article discusses difficulties lesbians face in Korean society, frustrations that occur while working with gay male activist groups and feminist groups, and the lesbian rights movement in Korea. It leaves us with a strong critique of the pervasiveness of heterosexism in the Korean feminist movement and a plea for feminists to break out of heterosexual dominated thinking and work with lesbians toward liberation of all women.

The article is available on Google Books (with a page or two missing). 



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