1) Why smart Korean girls can’t find guys
In a nutshell, because there’s not enough of them with the same level of education, as this comprehensive report from the Joongang Daily makes clear. Call it a side-effect of the number of women in universities doubling over the last 10 years (at least in Seoul).
Lest foreign readers also give up on ever finding a Korean man though, I’m No Picasso (posting at Ask a Korean!) has a lot of sage advice on how to do so, and then Suzy Chung at The Korea Blog provides a rundown of all the coupley things you have to in Korea do once you’re successful.
2) Sexual assault on the rise in Seoul
For the details, see The Three Wise Monkeys here, to which Michael Hurt of Scribblings of the Metropolitican adds that it’s good that the Korean press is finally noticing. Unfortunately however, the news from Asian Correspondent that police harassment of a sexual harassment victim drove her to attempt suicide isn’t a good sign, nor that a rape victim successfully did so after being insulted by the judge (although this latter may actually be a fabrication by the Korean media).
Meanwhile, The Marmot’s Hole reports that sexual harassment of female teachers by students is also a big (and increasing) problem.
3) Finally, a female singer for my daughters look up to!
Like Busan Haps says, what’s not to like about Velvet Geena, and I’ll direct you to her interview there post haste.
After you’ve read that, contrast the role model one of Korea’s “official” female idols is providing, which apparently involves starving oneself:
4) Korea’s skincare obsession
Hey, I’ve said it myself many times myself, but then I’m a fat, bald, white guy that doesn’t exactly scream “skincare expert” to most. Hearing it from an actual model though, then I think I can now rest my case(!):
Growing up in Sweden, I have learned that the best way to take care of your skin is to eat healthy food, drink a lot of water, not to smoke or drink too much alcohol, and to protect your skin from too much sun. Even if it’s good to use moisturizer and other sorts of skin care products, that’s not the most important thing. Furthermore, how your skin changes with age also has to do with genetics, and that you cannot control.
In Korea, and I don’t quite know why that is, people seem to think that the most important thing is to use the right skin care products…
Read the rest at Noona Blog: Seoul here.
5) Kim Yu-na drinks!
6) My abortion in Korea
As you probably know, I’ve written a lot about abortion in Korea, particularly the Lee Myung-bak administration’s decision to criminalize it in order to raise Korea’s world-low birthrate (yes, really). But still, nothing compares to Melissa Salvatore’s description of going through the process of getting one here:
This is a story of my experience with abortion as an expat in Busan, South Korea. I understand this is a controversial issue, and I am neither trying to encourage nor discourage abortion to other women. I simply want to use my story as an example of having this experience here and to provide other women with options and resources available to them. It is said that abortion is one of the loneliest experiences a woman can ever go through. I want women here to know that they are not alone, and have support.
Read on at Koreabridge.
Likewise something that deserves to be much better known (source, right):
Actress Kim Yoh-jin’s open support of a female labor activist is drawing fresh public attention on the otherwise unnoticed struggle the laborer stages on a 35-meter-high crane in a shipyard in the southeastern part of the country.
Kim’s appeal for the union member is pitting netizens and civic groups against the police and management of the company.
The 39-year-old actress is making headlines almost daily as she is not only actively expressing her opinions through Twitter on a number of sensitive social issues but by actually visiting strike locations where various struggles are taking place as well.
Read the rest at the Korea Times here, and kudos to Kim Rahn for drawing attention to it.
Update 1: For further information and updates, see the Three Wise Monkeys here.
Update 2: Evan Ramstad provides an alternative, much less positive view of the protest here.
8) Ask not what Korea can do for Mini Han…
From subject object verb:
In [the June 4] edition of OhmyNews.com, Michael Hurt…contributed an excellent piece (titled “‘Korean Beauty’ Wins International Competition Only To Be Cast Aside By Korea”) on Mini Han (한민희), who won the 2010 Miss Internaional Queen pageant. He uses the pageant to raise awareness about the still widely held attitude of prejudice and fear regarding non-heteronormative sexual identity in Korea.
9) And you thought I was exaggerating about the abysmal state of sex-education here…
Okay, maybe not you specifically! But to anyone that did, let me point them in the direction of 유♥웃’s boyfriend’s friend’s first sexual experience.
10) Yonsei University students on sex and the media
Last but not least, the English-language Korean blogosphere can never have enough input from Koreans themselves. See here, here, and here for their opinions on sex stereotypes in the Korean media; the media’s effects on women’s body images; and overlooked sexism in the media respectively!