2:40 pm - 10/18/2012

Korean Professor Uses Twitter to Criticize Online Misogyny Trend


Noori from koreaBANG reports:

Prof Chin Jung-kwon of Dongyang University, is a prominent South Korean cultural critic, and frequently appears as a panellist onKorean TV debate programmes. He is also known to be an avid Twitter user, sometimes using the platform as a debating ground. The following are some of his tweets with other users on the misogyny trends on the Korean Internet, from a male rights activist group to economics of dating. The netizen comments from Newbbang, one of the most popular and female dominated internet communities on Daum compares Prof Chin’s tweets with that of Mr Sung Jae-gi, the head of a male rights activist group, the Man of Korea. But it would seem that at least from female netizen’s point of view, Prof Chin seems to win by a landslide.

"You kids are still protesting. Hey, kiddos! Let me explain why you’re acting like this. Go abroad, and move around outside your comfort zone. You’ll realise the level of South Korea’s gender equality is pathetic. And the key of the inequality is economic. That’s the premise of my following comments on this issue."

"The Korean social structure is cemented as such: men are bread-earners, and women the housewives. Even if women have jobs, they don’t get paid fairly for a job that’s equal to that of a man’s. In short, women are a vulnerable population in terms of economic status yet, absurd traditions like men paying all dating cost still persist."

"However, as the economic recession is pressing everybody’s shoulder, men are pushed over the edge; they start getting ideas that they’re forced to compete with women, even for not so desirable jobs. This is where they start arguing over ‘extra credits’ for their military service when applying for a job. ‘We’ve fallen behind because of our two years of military service. Give us extra credits.’ They’re desperate."

"In fact, the status of the men with economic vulnerability is not so different from that of women. So-called ‘gold misses’ have better lives than those guys. Guys with economic power still have women under their thumb, but for those guys dealing with harsher realities, gender equality seems to have already been achieved."

"You guys are having hard time understanding it, saying, ‘Women are discriminated against men? What about me? Those boseulachis’ lives seem far better than mine, and they demand for women’s rights! This isn’t fair. It’s reverse discrimination.’ This is how you started asking for men’s rights and bitching about menstruation leave. How pathetic."

"In fact, a lot of you guys feel burdened to pay for dating cost. In this case, just ask the girls to pay the half. They’ll understand. But you’re still too proud to ask women to pay. That’s why you’re ranting on the issue on the Internet after paying the whole thing."

"As the gender gap closes, more men will fall behind the economic status of women; this brings fear about the end of male dominance for some men, especially for those with economic vulnerability. That is called ‘castration anxiety’ in psychology."

"In other words, it’s the fear that boseulachis may castrate you. (And from that anxiety, the word Vagina dentata comes up to the surface as a symbol of the fear). This is where the Man of Korea’s misogynistic and childish acts are derived from."

"Therefore you’ve collectively formed an enemy image, a negative image of women. In the west, it’s ‘femme fatal’ and in South Korea, it’s ‘bean paste’ girls. Even the enemy image sounds like chilli paste guys. Potayto, potahto.. Both femme fatal and bean paste girls are similar in the sense they are both holding power over men."

"This is the underlying truth about your crap talking like ‘Once you’re in a relationship with a bean paste girl, you’ll ruin your life,’ savvy? Like what Socrates said, know your little self. To realise who you are is the foundation of knowledge. Now do you realise why you’ve been acting like that?"

"What’s the right solution for this issue, then? It’s not your fault for living pathetic lives: the blame should go to the rules of the game. Not all men are like you. Those men with power are way ahead of you as the economy becomes sluggish. Why? Those noms made the rules that way from the start."

"In that sense, the Saenuri Party and the Democratic United Party are the same. That’s why I didn’t support either and went to a small liberal party. You should point the finger at those with power who have pushed you off the cliff. Those who made the rules to only serve themselves.. They deserve your curse and swearing. (That’s why Ahn Cheol-soo has become popular.)"

Netizen Comments

Why is Sung Jae-gi bitching about women? He’s married to one.

아시아에 별이 5개:
His wording seems rough.

안녕하세요 준영이 여자친구입니다:
Oh… it’s not because I’m a woman, but am I the only one who thinks Chin Jung-kwon sounds more logical than Sung Jae-gi?

유승우 키우고싶다 진심…:
Yeah.. Mr Sung was really impossible. I guess Chin Jung-kwon holds the upper hand regarding speech techniques. And of course, he’s right about this issue.

Mr Chin, run for the presidential election. To be honest, I don’t understand what Sung Jae-gi says. ke ke Reading Mr Chin’s tweets, now I understand Korean men’s behaviour on the internet. Persuasive.

‘Women are discriminated against men? What about me? Those boseulachis’ lives seem better than mine, and they demand for women’s rights! This isn’t fair. It’s reverse discrimination.’ This is how you started asking for men’s rights and bitching about menstruation leave. How pathetic. [repeating what Chin Jung-kwon said] It’s so freaking satisfying to hear that. ke ke ke I didn’t like Chin Jung-kwon, but he totally owned Sung Jae-gi and his pathetic followers in this debate. ke ke ke

It feels so good to read his tweets ke ke ke ke

뉴빵어린이: Chin Jung-kwon is weirdly charming.. One day he’s likeable and the next day, I hate him.

What Chin Jung-kwon said sounds reasonable.

재범이의 찌찌월드:
I understand what Mr Sung Jae-gi tries to say, but his use of words doesn’t sound mature. He seems to target all women, so eager to spit out whatever he wants to say.. I get what he means, yet his words are simply dirty and wrong.

Agreed.[agreeing to the comment above] His words are too harsh. ;;

I think Sung Jae-gi is one of those bugs on Ilbe.

I don’t understand some of you saying Sung Jae-gi isn’t wrong. Once he started bitching about menstruation leave, everything coming out of his mouth sounds ridiculous. Though I understand some of his underlying thoughts, Prof Chin’s logic seems much more acceptable.

BTW, he talks really well!

동방신기 BEAST B1A4:
Wow, he sounds logical, as opposed to Mr Sung. Some of his words are mean, but it all comes down to the context.

He’s so articulate.

It doesn’t matter some of his words are mean. Once you know Prof Chin better, you’ll know whether he is trying to get his point across or simply talking like shit.

Prof Chin, answer me please ㅠ [pleading him to answer her on Twitter]

I realised Mr Sung only sees what he wants to see when he said that Korean women should be grateful that Korea is the only nation to have menstruation leave, even though the menstrual cycle is not limited to Korean women. I heard there’s no menstruation leave in Germany and Canada, but it’s not about whether women feel pain during menstruation; it’s easier for them to get a sick leave than us. That’s why they don’t need menstruation leave. On top of that, those men can easily get a sick leave, compared to Korean counterpart. Since Korean corporate workers have to watch their bosses’ Nunchi a lot, sick leave seems like pie in the sky. And we’ve got to admit that it’s harder for men than women to take a day off when sick. Therefore, I think the issue here is to revise the sick leave system to let men get a sick leave when needed, not to repeal the law on menstruation leave.

I was taken aback by the comments on this community about Mr Sung’s writings. It was shocking to see a lot of you said ‘His words are mean, yet it seems right.’ I’m not sure the average age of this community, but agreeing to such remarks like ‘There are brain-less bitches, he’s right. If you’re not one of those bitches, don’t be upset about it’ seems so.. Oh dear.. Those kinds of comments are alarming, standing hand-in-hand with misogynists. Keeping those attitudes will not only fail to separate you from ‘those women,’ but ruin the women’s rights in Korea. Fitting your opinion to hard-line misogynists while trashing and insulting fellow women is what ‘female machos’ do, saying, ‘I’m not one of them. Those boseulachis, bean paste bitches deserve to get humiliated.’ I hope you think deeply about how insulting and depreciating such words are to women. With such attitude among women, there’ll be more and more ‘female machos.’ And you’ll have to deal with the repercussions of your distorted views and inconsiderate words when you graduate from college, get a job and married.

Source: Koreabang and unheim@twitter

i'm not particularly impressed by him. what do y'all think?
uniqlos 18th-Oct-2012 09:48 pm (UTC)
what are the netizen responses like?
uledy 18th-Oct-2012 09:58 pm (UTC)
I thought people hated netizen comments, so I excluded them. But I went ahead and added them just now :)
uniqlos 19th-Oct-2012 01:48 am (UTC)
thanks! the way i understood it is he's explaining the male mindset of misogyny. idt all the netizen comments get it, like he's not calling out women as "bean paste bitches" he's putting on the persona of a misogynist, and then talking that way and then switching back to explain why those men are like that.

are sung jae-gi's comments online too?
uledy 19th-Oct-2012 02:31 am (UTC)
No problem! You know, I don't know if Sung Jae-gi's comments are consolidated anywhere. This is his twitter and website, but they're both in Korean.  Hope that's ok?
921227 18th-Oct-2012 09:53 pm (UTC)
It's difficult for me to get the best meaning since it's a translation, but he's not wrong I don't think. Economic culture in Korea and in the US is very male centered- comparing the average female's salary of equal work to a man's isn't even at all and social culture still reflects the whole man = earner woman = caregiver mentality (Romney's statement about binders full of women backs that up)

The only thing I don't particularly agree with is how he doesn't quite fix the blame on men i.e it isn't their fault but society's for being that way when men, within reasons, are the society that created the culture really.
chunsakuma 18th-Oct-2012 09:56 pm (UTC)
When I got to "vagina dentata", I was like

shintotchi 18th-Oct-2012 10:16 pm (UTC)
dippz 18th-Oct-2012 11:49 pm (UTC)
Hes right though.....

the men at the top are to blame........

here in the US too.......
germaineu 19th-Oct-2012 12:00 am (UTC)
I wish I knew what Sung Jae-gi? said to get him all riled up.

He's mostly right though and I really like some of those netizen replies!

0nlymemories 19th-Oct-2012 12:27 am (UTC)
It's super academic in tone (which... makes sense, given who he is) but he's basically saying the same things that come up any time you talk about these issues in the US/any other country. It's good to see someone within South Korea fighting the good fight, and at least some people on the internets agreeing with him.

(tbh this sounds almost exactly like the FB-plosion that happens every time the Lilly Ledbetter Act gets mentioned in mixed company, i.e. progressives and conservatives. So much misogyny, so little time.)
falling_empress 19th-Oct-2012 12:38 am (UTC)
um i am not understanding whether he is defending or hating on both genders.
uniqlos 19th-Oct-2012 01:46 am (UTC)
the way i understood it is he's explaining the male mindset of misogyny. idt all the netizen comments get it, like he's not calling out women as "bean paste bitches" he's putting on the persona of a misogynist, and then talking that way and then switching back to explain why those men are like that.
seung_is_my_ho 19th-Oct-2012 12:55 am (UTC)
I have never lived in S. Korea, so obviously I have very little for me to go on looking at this guy's comments. but tbh, what he's criticising I've heard of before. The first time I heard of that "Man of Korea" group I srsly thought it was a joke. I mean, who on earth starts a men's rights activist group? (unless your'e battling domestic violence against males or something, that's just delusional.) I think the guy's comments are pretty valid.
4minutesluts 19th-Oct-2012 06:33 am (UTC)

basically a bunch of pathetic nerds who want someone other than themselves to blame for being pathetic nerds
izabera 19th-Oct-2012 07:34 am (UTC)
I understand why there are groups to help divorced fathers get access to their children or to protect male victims of domestic violence.
However these Korean male rights activists sound like a bunch of bitter insecure men who are afraid that one day they'll have to compete on an equal ground with women.
(no subject) - Anonymous
4minutesluts 19th-Oct-2012 06:34 am (UTC)
it basically sums up 'mens rights' shitheads in a nutshell

whine about things on the internet, never do anything to actually try and address what they believe are issues irl
tsuyoi_hikari 19th-Oct-2012 07:37 am (UTC)
Honestly, his comments are pretty right & made sense considering the culture & reality in South Korea. If you've been to the country, you will realize that men are expected to work while women will stay home and spent their hard-earned money. The funny thing is, it's very easy to find men that hate their wives in Korea -- the reality there is no joke.

So OP, can ask you why you are not particularly impressed by him? Is it because he seemed childish to vent his anger on twitter or you just didn't agree with his views?
uledy 19th-Oct-2012 12:29 pm (UTC)
Sure. I don't mind that he used twitter, I think it's a useful tool, especially when discussing issues specific to social media (although he's talking about men inside and out of the internet).

But the problem I have may be because of the platform. It just gives limited space for him to expound on his ideas, so I'm reading a lot of superficial critiques but no real analysis. I want more depth, more grit. While I don't think he's blaming women, he's not placing as much blame on the men as he should. He sometimes paints the men as passive recipients and facilitators of misogynistic ideas instead the main generators and perpetrators. His last couple of tweets rightfully criticized the system that perpetrates misogyny and while these men are a product of that conditioning, they're still reaping the benefits of the system and harming women. I understand the approach he's taking, "you're a product of your fucked up society and in a way a victim too, the machine has control of us all, ect ect" but I just didn't think it was appropriate to make that point at that particular time. But in general, I agree with most of what he said.
soramai 19th-Oct-2012 12:38 pm (UTC)
Tbh, It's the first time I heard about menstruation leave...

And I like the term female machos

mjspice 19th-Oct-2012 05:13 pm (UTC)
Hmm he got some good points here...
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