Anthropology > Syllabus > KOR 352 (Fall 2019) Class, Gender, and Family in Korea (All)

KOR 352 (Fall 2019) Class, Gender, and Family in Korea

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Course Description In this course, students will learn about Korea through three specific aspects: class, gender, and family. Ethnographic literature will help illustrate the formation of class, gen... der issues, and the importance of family in Korea. Korea has transformed from one of the world's poorest agriculturally based countries to a post-industrial country in a very short time. More than 80% of the entire population redefined itself as middle class, which shows the Korean people's strong desire for upward mobility. Family has played an important role in realizing upward mobility and forming a middle-class identity. The gender-division of labor based on the separation between public and private spheres has functioned as an effective system for coping with rapid economic development while deepening gender discrimination. Family strategies for upward mobility put more demands on the wife and mother of the household due to an extremely competitive education system and real estate speculation. All of these changes have resulted in the marginalization of women, drawing them out of the workforce and back into the home. Ironically, the rapidly decreasing birth rate, the lowest in the world, strongly demonstrates tacit opposition to the country’s ongoing gender discrimination. Using Korean cases as a model, students will reflect on modernities specific to their own experiences. Course Objectives During the semester, students will: ● delve deep into issues of class, gender, and family in Korea through different topics and case studies such as the growth of Korean conglomerates, exploitation of female labor, consumption and middle-class identity, private education market, the aftermath of the Korean War, North Koreans in Japan, the Asian financial crisis, immigration, and transnational media flow ● learn about theories of class, gender, family, and modernity through ethnographies ● encounter historical challenges faced by developing countries that have undergone compressed modernity like Korea ● examine our contemporary world from more diverse perspectives based on lessons in other modernities2 Learner Outcomes After taking this course, students will be able to: ● analyze modernity not as a singular teleological process but as diverse outcomes based on different historical and cultural contexts ● assess the way in which class has formed and has influenced people’s everyday life in Korea ● access the way in which gender has shaped Korean modernity ● engage in ethnographic literature and its methods and primary data ● demonstrate the implications of Korea within the broader global contexts such as the Cold War ● develop critical reading, thinking, and writing skills through seminar and writing assignments Learner Outcomes will be measured in the following ways: 1. Ability to comprehend reading assignments including accessing author’s main arguments, supporting data, reasoning, and conclusion: weekly quizzes, small group discussions 2. Ability to raise original and critical questions, communicate ideas clearly, and engage with other people’s arguments: small group discussions, blog posts, research paper 3. Ability to read, think, and write critically: research paper [Show More]

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