Feminism and the discourse of sexuality in korea: Continuities and changes [Book Review]

Human Studies 24 (1-2):133-148 (2001)
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Abstract

This paper aims to deal with the change of sexual discourse through the rise of a feminist movement in Korea from a constructivist point of view. First, the paper discusses the Confucianism of the Chosun dynasty as an historical background of the issue of sexuality (since Confucianism still has a far-reaching grip and effect on many aspects of everyday life in Korea). Second, it deals with chastity ideology and the double standard of sexuality between men and women as ongoing Confucian sexual discourses. Third, it focuses on three themes: (1) the change from sex for procreation to sex for pleasure, (2) the change from genitally-oriented sexuality to intimacy- or relationship-oriented sexuality, and (3) the change from a woman as a sexual object to a sexual subject as part of the changes of sexual discourses. Fourth, it tries to show clashes and/or alliances between the Confucian and feminist discourses on sexuality, which make up the process of the social construction of sexuality. This shows that sexuality is a socio-historical construction in Korea as elsewhere.

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