The following is the introduction on Vimeo for the documentary film The Woman, The Orphan, and the Tiger. I present the link to the movie following this.
It is an excellent and much needed film speaking to issues surrounding trauma and women of the South Korean diaspora.
Although this film is of the South Korean women’s diaspora, sexualization and militarization, I feel that there are many parallels with women who are Filipino, Japanese, Vietnamese, Cambodian, Laotian, and other dominant nationalities and the indigenous and ‘minority’ women who live within them, whose lives are connected to the presence of the US military in their societies following wars and conquests, and their connection to elite Asian governments today in relation to global imperialism.
The Woman, The Orphan, and The Tiger
by Jane Jin Kaisen & Guston Sondin-Kung, 2010
Single channel video, 72 min. Color & BW, 16:9 DVCPRO 720p
The Woman, The Orphan, and The Tiger follows a group of international adoptees and other women of the Korean Diaspora in their twenties & thirties. It explores the ways in which trauma is passed on from previous generations to the present through a sense of being haunted. The physical return of the Diaspora confronts and de-stabilizes narratives that have been constructed to systematically silence histories of injustice committed onto certain parts of the population in South Korea. A genealogy is created by relating the stories of three generations of women: the former comfort women who were subjected to military sexual slavery by the Japanese military between World War I and II – the approximately one million women who have worked as sex-workers around US military bases in South Korea from the nineteen fifties to the present – and the around two hundred thousand children who were adopted from South Korea to the West since the nineteen fifties. The film exposes how military and patriarchal violence against women and children became central in geopolitical negotiations between South Korea, the United States, and Japan, and how this part of world history has been systematically silenced, but reverberates in the present moment.
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