Dear global sisters,
I cordially welcome you to the 9th International Interdisciplinary Congress on Women(IICW). I hope we will all share our new visions for women across the world, consolidate our global sisterhood, “Embrace the Earth” and generate long-lasting returns from this congress.
Korean women are very proud to be hosting the IICW in Seoul this year. We are at a turning point in the development of women's studies, particularly here in Korea. As a result of our efforts, a more gender-equal culture is slowly developing across Korean society. This year, we saw the abolition of the degrading Hoju system, whereby each family had a head and it was always male. We also saw the formation of the Ministry of Gender Equality & Family, a subtle but critical change. We are now moving toward a new paradigm of women's studies and feminist activities. In this context, it is very meaningful and pleasing for us to share this event with our global sisters.
Only in 1974 did Korea see its first women's social education program, at the Christian Academy, a progressive institute for social education. After this late beginning, Ewha University offered a women's study course in 1977 and it then established its Department of Women's Studies within the Graduate Faculty in 1982. With the creation of the Korean Association of Women's Studies in 1984, women's studies began to quickly take off. Based on a practical philosophy, women's studies here have contributed to the general development of democracy and gender equality. This philosophy has since become more and more the norm in academic circles, working places, policy-making bodies and social groups.
As the most representative feminist publication in Korea, The Women's News has been closely linked with the Korean women's movement. Many female leaders have been actively involved in The Women's News during its 17-year publishing history.
Its mission is based principally on the feminist tradition: to see with the eyes of a woman, to think with the mind of a woman, to speak with the mouth of a woman. Many feminist movements across the globe have been brought to the public's attention through the pages of The Women's News. In three years' time, The Women's News will celebrate its 20th anniversary. It is now ready to become the global eyes, ears and mouth for women of the world.