THE MAKING OF MODERN WOMEN IN POST-WAR KOREA: WOMEN’S MOBILIZATION IN THE GENDERED NATION-BUILDING, 1961-1979
This dissertation explores how the authoritarian regime of Park Chung-Hee (1963-1979) mobilized women as individuals and groups in transforming the agricultural state to an industrialized and modernized one. Although much has been written about the significance of Korean male elites in economic and democratic achievements, we can only find limited scholarship on women’s mobilization by the state as well as the roles of ordinary women and female elites in the national development process. My work is different in that I highlight the Park Chung-Hee regime’s colonial legacy and its broader application to women’s social and public mobilization for the national economic growth. I argue that Korean women were mobilized by the Park Chung-Hee regime as individuals and groups considered a great source to consolidate diplomatic relations with allies as well as “voluntary” social workers and as cheaper laborers.