social justice

A work of art at the House of Sharing near Seoul, depicting a young girl with orange and pink butterfly wings

House of Sharing update, part 3: The whistleblowers

It’s taken some time to put together this third post about Japanese military sexual slavery and the survivors at the House of Sharing in Gwangju, Gyeonggi Province. A Korean friend helped me gather information for it, and I also got assistance from a bilingual personal assistant service. Ji Geunook, the friend who helped me, is knowledgeable …

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A work of art at the House of Sharing near Seoul, depicting butterflies on a rocky wall

House of Sharing update, part 2: Reaching the world

On Wednesday, May 5, protesters gathered outside the former site of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul as they do every Wednesday. The turnout may have been higher because of the Children’s Day holiday. They were calling for justice for the survivors of Japanese military sexual slavery — for Japan to make a genuine apology, acknowledge …

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Survivors of sexual slavery dance with Korean traditional dancers and musicians at the House of Sharing near Seoul

Survivors of Japanese military sexual slavery: How to show our support

There’s a picture on my computer from 2009 that’s stayed with me: elderly women dancing in a circle, surrounded by drummers and dancers in traditional Korean garments. They were celebrating the first full moon of the Lunar New Year in an outdoor space at the House of Sharing in Gwangju, Gyeonggi Province, south of Seoul. …

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Heeji

Violence, not food: Animal activist Heeji Yi

Heeji Yi has become an unstoppable force in the local animal rights scene. She’s attended protests, done vegan education at Cube of Truth events, and organized Save vigils for animals on their way to slaughter. This year she founded Direct Action Everywhere Seoul. Her first Save vigil, about a year ago, was for chickens. Since …

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Yiombi Thona in Seoul

‘Lift them, don’t shift them’: Refugee activist Yiombi Thona

It was an honor to interview Yiombi Thona in 2014 for a special issue of Groove Korea to commemorate the magazine’s 100th edition. The theme was “100 expats who made a difference in Korea.” Even though the resulting article had to be cut short to fit the tight space, I’m happy to say Yiombi’s human …

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Two masked male activists display computer screens in front of the Loisir Hotel in downtown Seoul as two female passers-by glance in their direction.

Cube of Truth: Vegan activism in Seoul

The first time I observed a Cube of Truth event in Myeong-dong, the busy shopping area in downtown Seoul, I’d followed the group’s activities on social media for some time. The activists were representing Anonymous for the Voiceless, AV for short. According to its international website, “Anonymous for the Voiceless is a street activist organization …

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