ISC this Month

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On August 5th, we attended the Celebration for the 191th Anniversary of the Independence of Bolivia. The Ambassador Guadalupe Palomeque noted the importance of women’s roles in a country’s growth. In the case of Bolivia, the Constituent Assembly that created the 2009 Constitution indigenous woman was led by an indigenous woman, Silvia Lazarte. As a result there were 20 gender related provisions and there were also laws passed around gender equality. Women’s participation in government and in agencies for external affairs also increased. The Ambassador also spoke about Bolivia’s economic stability. In the past ten years, including  2015, Bolivia has had the highest growth rate in South America. The last quarter of 2016 is expected to have an about 5% growth rate. This economic development is happening alongside policies for poverty alleviation. Bolivia, through its economic model of productive social communities and by implementing policies effectively redistributing income and alleviating discrimination, succeeded in reducing extreme poverty from 38% to 17%. The independence day celebration included traditional Bolivian dance and performances.

August Open Lecture: Korean Feminist Movement Feminism open lecture

Our August 13, the ISC hosted its Open Lecture “The Korean Feminist Movement: Yesterday and Today.” The Gangnam Station murder that showed how a woman can be the target of discrimination and violence simply for being a minority and the recent controversies around “mirroring” which are used to expose the sexual discrimination in society greatly increased people’s interests in feminism. The room was completely packed. Ji-Ah Park, the Director of Education for Gender Equality of the Seoul Women’s Association, lectured for about an hour and half on the history and concepts of the feminist movement and its fight against all forms of discrimination and violence. She also lectured on the various social controversies and hot issues related to feminism.  Many questions were sparked by the lecture rapidly filling up the Q&A session. Later, even as some of the participants gathered to grab a few drinks, people were still passionately discussing the issue of feminism. On August 27, we had a trip to the Sister’s Library at the offices of the Seoul Women’s Association and now are planning a study on feminism.