View from a Rhino House: women’s work

In South Korea during Chuseok, the three-day thanksgiving holiday, women traditionally do most of the work in preparing and cooking elaborate ceremonial dishes while the men of the family chat, drink & watch television (radically different from the US version, it would seem).

The holiday gender divide is so entrenched that it has spawned the term “daughter-in-law holiday syndrome”, with many young women suffering post-holiday stress & fatigue. Men generally end the holiday suffering from a hangover & indigestion

Fake casts for pretending you have a broken arm to evade having to help prepare holiday meals have become stellar online sellers this year, amongst both men & women, suggesting that traditional roles are not so much being challenged as ducked. But getting away with the phoney cast ruse may be difficult, after several media outlets reported on a huge increase in sales of the devices in the run-up to the holiday, which started yesterday.

“Although an increasing number of women are actively engaged in economic activities, a perception remains that only women are responsible for holiday preparation,” said Na-Young Lee, a sociologist at Chung-Ang University. “We need to try to understand that both men & women are equal beings in working & raising children in a family,” she said.

Happy days!

OK, I think that maybe now you're overdoing it a little....

OK, I think that maybe now you’re overdoing it a little….