Accepted Paper:

Familial and gender dimensions of Korean transnational migration  


Hyuna Moon (Seoul National University)

Paper short abstract:

This research follows the traits and tracks of these routes of transnational migration process of Korean Diasporas through family and gender perspective.

Paper long abstract:

This paper focuses on the interpretation of Korean history not as a formal and institutionalized macro events, but as individually and family based and differently experienced by gender. Understanding history at the individual level, this paper focuses on the memories of Korean diaspora, specifically reconstructed memories of people involved. It is not a main focus of this paper to verify whether the memories of these are right or wrong, rather the focus is on how they are differently interpreted by gender and how that gender influences in reconstructing the memories. These memories would be reconstructed using the so called collaborative oral history methodology. I participated in the collaborative oral history sessions focusing on the people of Korean Diaspora, especially seniors over 70s who have returned to South Korea, their homeland. During the sessions I found quite a few interesting points related to the experiences of diasporic moments which may be best described as transnational experiences. Both women and men being transnational persons shared stories that criss-cross borders moving away from a single national history and in most of the cases, family matters revealed as one of most important causes of their migration. Through this narrative process, family issues are revisited and also gender norms on the Korean society are negotiated and contested in their transnational experiences. Thus, this paper attempts to reconstruct gendered transnational experiences of Korean diaspora and examine how the matters of family and gender are involved and interpreted in Korean transnational migration.

Panel P079
Transnational history and multicultural identities of (ethnic) Koreans