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Family in South Korea - Essay Example

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In South Korea, working women give up their careers after giving birth and stay home to personally take care of their children. The husbands spend most of their time at work, trying to earn as much as they can for their family. These women belonged to an older generation of Korean females who were raised in the belief that they are supposed to serve their husbands and their in-laws…
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Family in South Korea
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Download file to see previous pages Women of the 21st century may find this scenario hard to believe. Nowadays, men and women share the responsibilities of keeping house and being the breadwinners. Society has placed men and women under the traditional roles of wage earner and housewife. From time immemorial, women assumed that once married their job is to take care of the children and do housework. Thus, society has coined the term “housewife”. There has never been someone called a “househusband”. On the other hand, men assumed that once married their job is to find work and bring in money. Thus, whenever asked if he loads the washing machine, cooks or washes the dishes, a typical male would respond, “No. Those are a woman’s job.” Moreover, if for some reason the same male is hanging up wet clothes in the back yard to dry he will be silently wishing none of his friends would suddenly come over and catch him doing so. What society and men, in particular, have only recently recognized is that in playing her “traditional” role, women are actually accomplishing several tasks. A sub-plot in several comedy films is how a husband gladly volunteers to look after the house and the kids while the lady of the house goes to an appointment. After attending numerous board meetings, making deadlines and pleasing strict bosses, he confidently tells his wife that taking care of the kids and the house for a day is a piece of cake. The wife becomes even more worried. When she comes home in the evening, toys are scattered in the living room, the kitchen is disorganized and messy and her husband and kids have fallen asleep on their bed, a children’s book on her husband’s lap. The husband never volunteers to stay home again. Before multi-tasking even became a common term in the work environment, women have already given meaning to the word for the longest time. In the early days, women had to cook, clean their homes, wash clothes and manage the kids day after day. Since a hunting party usually takes a few days before coming home, the women had to keep the home safe in the meantime. In between, they also had to set aside time for personal activities such as spending time with friends, staying properly groomed, connecting with her husband, etc. In this day and age, working moms have added career to the multi-tasking list. It would appear that the skill to multi-task is as innate in a woman as the ability to know when there is something wrong with her child or partner. This is why amongst themselves women like to call each other “superwoman”. Author Rachel Lehman-Haupt writes that with the advent of technology men were at a loss in the new world of multi-tasking and women ruled. (56) Because of this, women have become more economically independent. The superwomen were also tired of doing everything alone and, although they still want to find the typical “prince” of fairytales, they also wanted who could multitask like them. The men do not have a choice. Divorced men have to live and fend for themselves. Gay couples have taken on household duties. Moreover, as the family of this generation cannot do without the wife’s income, the men have had to learn how to balance work and home as well. The Raines family is one of the many examples of the multi-tasking husband and wife. Mrs. Raines works as an English as a Foreign Language teacher at one of the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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