Identity

Gender, feminism, adoption, LGBT issues, Korean identity and more

Jihyun Kim
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Kwanwoo Suh Is Looking for His Korean Father

Kwanwoo Suh, 30, is facing his second winter in South Korea. He moved here from the West African country of Liberia in July 2017, and he finds it challenging to cope with the cold weather. But Suh is trying to stay on until he meets his objective. He is here

Haeryun Kang
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CJ CGV's "Be a Foreigner": Funny April Fool's Event or Cultural Appropriation?

Are these images offensive? A blond-haired Asian man with facial hair wearing a blue turban and a red bindi dot on his forehead ready to eat a bowl of Chinese noodles A group of people from different ethnic backgrounds in traditional clothing: people in the Korean hanbok, the

Haeryun Kang
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Unlikely Debate: Olympics 'Garlic Girls' and Japanese Porn

A few hours before the Olympics closing ceremony, the South Korean women’s curling team finally got their cellphones back. The country’s most popular Olympics stars, who won a historic silver on Sunday, didn’t have access to the internet or TV throughout the games. Unbeknownst to

Ho Kyeong Jang
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The Kevin Spacey Twist in South Korea's #MeToo Campaign?

The #MeToo movement is intensifying in South Korea. But in the sexually conservative society, the waters get murkier when homosexuality gets involved. On Feb. 1, a film director went public with her experience of sexual assault. She had been assaulted in 2015 by fellow director Lee Hyun-ju and wrote about

Rachel Oh
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Good Luck Making It As Korean in America

“Let’s hope for the best with your interviews. But I’d also be prepared for an unfortunate outcome.” This line appeared in a recent Buzzfeed video titled “Making it as Korean in America,” which garnered more than 850,000 views on YouTube. In this scene, a lawyer wishes a

Youngjoo Lee
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ID Photos That Break the Mould

South Korea is known for its culture of conformity (and ID photos to match). But meet Sihyun, a photographer who’s made a name for herself by taking ID pictures that show every subject as a unique individual. Cover image: A collection of Sihyun’s ID photos (courtesy

Youjin Do
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"Black Protests" Call End to Outdated Abortion Law

These “black protesters” want to put an end to South Korea’s outdated abortion law, which activists argue places most of the burden on women, who must not only bear the brunt of the pregnancy, but also face the social stigma and shame surrounding abortion.   Abortion

Raphael Rashid
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Kopino Children: Half Korean, Half Filipino, Fatherless

Kristi, 23, met a South Korean man in the city of Makati, Philippines, through a blind date. “It was love at first sight. We were dating for a few months. Soon enough, I found out he was already married with kids. It broke my world so I decided to end

Jihyun Kim
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The Old Man’s Harbor

Everyday for the past twenty years, 78-year-old Kim Yun-sik has been going to Jongno in central Seoul. Around noon, he eats free lunch at the cafeteria where a Buddhist temple used to stand until the 1500s; until 5 p.m., he whiles away the time in Tapgol Park, and in

Haeryun Kang
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The Latest in S. Korean Feminism: Zucchinis

Yes, zucchinis. On Nov. 18, 3:14 p.m. KST, South Korean actor Yoo Ah-in responded to a comment about a vegetable. The instigating tweet made a jab at Yoo’s persona: “Yoo Ah-in…he seems good to look at from 20 meters away…but it may be

Raphael Rashid
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Ilbe vs. Womad: Alleged Child Abuse Reignites S. Korea's Gender War

A bizarre incident involving the arrest of a South Korean woman in Australia for “producing child abuse material” has re-ignited the online gender discourse in South Korea. On Nov. 21, Australian Federal Police released a statement saying it had arrested a “27-year-old female Korean national” the previous day in Darwin,

Raphael Rashid
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KÉ Interview: That Famous Same-Sex Wedding, Four Years Later

While homosexuality is not outlawed per se in South Korea, LGBT rights is still a sensitive topic in a country where, in certain contexts, being gay can even lead to criminal prosecution. In 2013, Dave Kim (Kim Seung-hwan), a producer at LGBT film production and distribution company Rainbow Factory, wed