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Korean Women’s Life Courses And Self Perceptions: Isomorphism Of “Family Centeredness”

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Chapter Summary

This chapter analyzes empirically-grounded data to explicate the changes in Korean women's lives. It examines women's own interpretations and understandings of family roles and market labor to uncover the structural distinctiveness of gender relations in Korean society. The meaning of family roles and economic activities is not just the representation of social norms internalized; it is also the externalization of women's self-experiences over their life course. Inquiry into the ways women interpret their family and economic activities and the ways these meanings are related to collective cultural systems in Korean society provides important keys to understanding the distinctive structural-behavioral interplay in the formation of gender identity in Korea. The chapter employs a life course analysis to discover the characteristic patterns of women's family and economic activities and to articulate the ways that women themselves interpret their lives.

Keywords: Korean Women; life course; women's self-experiences



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