WW05 Embraces the Earth through Ewha
WW05 Embraces the Earth through Ewha
  • 김수현 기자
  • 승인 2005.09.01 00:00
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▲ Women from various cultures say the theme in their own language in the Closing Ceremony. [Photo by Cho You-jin]

   Three years of efforts of feminists from all over the globe coalesced to put together Women's Worlds 2005: the 9th International Interdisciplinary Congress on Women (WW05), which was held from June 19 to 24 at Ewha, uniting over 2,058 participants from 75 countries. The theme was "Embracing the Earth: East-West, North-South," derived from the idea of Korean women's struggle against the patriarchal social system as well as the tragedy of the North-South division. Ewha's contribution to women's leadership studies in Korea was a cardinal reason for the selection of Ewha as the ground for WW05.
   To facilitate such congress, the IICW Site Selection Committee organized 12 divisions to form the Organizing Committee which was directed by  Congress Convenor Chang Pil-hwa (Womans Studies) and Congress Coordinator Kim Eun-shil (Womans Studies). Along with the Committee, the volunteer students played a big role. 280 applicants from universities in and outside of Korea helped not only by being information guides, but also by offering fluent translation for foreigners.
   Present at the opening ceremony were Lee Myung-bak, mayor of Seoul, and First Lady and Congress Patron Kwon Yang-suk and Kim Ae-sil, Chair of the Women's Affairs Committee of the National Assembly. They congratulated and thanked the Organizing Committee and volunteers for their commitment to the establishment of WW05 in Korea. Lee stated, "This proves that the status of Korean women has improved."

  Various sessions by feminist activists and scholars such as President Gertrude Mongella (Africa), Gloria Bonder (Argentina), Cynthia Enloe (U.S.), and Irene Dankelman (Netherlands), pointed out challenges that need to be faced not just for women but also for children and peace worldwide.
   For Ewha as well as Korea on the whole, WW05 was a great opportunity which marked Ewha as being in the forefront in women's leadership studies. The congress also allowed Korean feminism a chance to be welcomed by women internationally. Promising each other that they would meet again in Madrid, Spain in 2008 to share other serious concerns for women, sisters of WW05 enjoyed one another, celebrating and uniting as one.

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