Thursday, September 20, 2012

Blog 4 South Korean Host Bars- for women

South Korean host bars - for women

Changes have come to South Korea since their rapid economic development. The ideas behind Host bars have been in Asian cultures for centuries. These bars go along with the traditions of geisha and kisaeng houses but the women are the clients instead.  These bars are all-night drinking rooms that the females pay for male companionship. The hosts provide the women attention, entertainment such as pouring drinks and dancing. Most of these bars do not officially offer sex to the clients. The price of a host runs $487 to $650 a day. The idea of a host bar came from what were known as room salons. In these rooms attractive waitresses served males. One of the clients says she comes because she gets more attention from the companions as well as more choice and has more control in the interactions. Jasper Kim, head of a research group in Korea says that the Korean society are not focused on human relations but instead focused on jobs and technology. The society is on what seems to be a culture revolution. These bars offer women a way to challenge the traditional gender roles and also spread their economic power.
            According to our chapter reading this week, Globalization is changing men and women’s roles across the world. Women’s roles are becoming broader and more encompassing.  Women’s roles in South Korea have been changing and this expands into the world entertainment.  The amount of money that exchanges hands between the women and the men reflects how women are starting to have more presence in economies. Though women are still not being paid equal to men, the wealthy women can still contribute to economies. We have also learned through our reading this week that patriarchy refers to the structure of institutions and whole societies in ways that subordinate women, children, and anything considered feminine. With host bars reversing the roles men and women serve in this industry, the idea of a subordinate female is slowly being transitioned into the idea of a subordinate male. This market of host bars is giving women a respectable voice to change ideas in a patriarchy society.   Women around the world have been breaking down barriers of what are traditional female roles for decades now.  Women have made progress in what careers are available to them but now in South Korea they are breaking down the barriers in the entertainment industry as well. Like new feminist theories and movements, these women are helping to change how societies construct the ideals of masculinity and femininity.

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