”In may, A 23-year-old Korean woman got murdered by a schizophreniac man in the bathroom, at the Gangnam station. The man who got caught insisted that he had been ignored by women. He waited 2 hours for any random woman to come into the toilet. As a woman, and as the same age as the victim, I felt afraid to live in South Korea. If the reason he stabbed her multiple times was only because of her gender, the victim could be me if by any chance I were in Gangnam station at that moment. And I found myself feeling safe because it wasn’t me, and I wasn’t there. I was sorry for her death and for myself as well.
Every now and again I think of this incident when I go to toilet of any pubs. Is this just about a lunatic who failed to manage his anger? Is everything going to be okay when I am more careful not to bump into such a mental illness? Where did his anger come from? Still, Woman-targeted crimes persist everywhere. And no matter when it happened, advices like ‘don’t wear too revealing clothes, don’t hang out with friends too late’ follow, as if women are also responsible for providing reasons to be victimized by crimes.
I used to accept those advices and tried to keep those in mind in the past, but now I guess that cannot be an answer unless we demand a change by affecting people’s bottom lines. First and foremost, I want to awaken myself from conservative way to look at women, all micro aggressions, naughty joking against women and a tentative social perception such as expecting women to put a makeup outside.. And I don’t want to stop to ask myself what it means to be a woman in this society.”
Jisoo, 23, student of cultural tourism at Kyunghee university.