How #MeToo Is Taking on a Life of Its Own in Asia
#TIA – The slow-going that characterizes progress of the me-too movement in Asia.
“It’s been eight years since Seo Ji-hyun says she was sexually harassed, but it’s still painful to recall. “For a long time, I tortured myself by blaming myself for everything,” she says, speaking to TIME on a cloudy September morning in Seoul’s trendy Apgujeong neighborhood. In 2010, Seo, a top-level prosecutor in South Korea, alleges that she was repeatedly groped at a funeral by a senior male colleague, while the country’s Justice Minister sat nearby.
Seo reported the incident to her managers shortly after, but was subjected to performance audits that she describes as unfair, and assigned to a lower level branch outside Seoul—a move she says did not match her strong track record at work. Last fall, after suffering long term health problems such as panic attacks and trouble sleeping, Seo watched as the #MeToo movement took off in Hollywood. She began to grasp how widespread sexual harassment and assault were, and realized even “world-famous actresses” had suffered as she had. “I had more confidence in believing that it wasn’t my fault,” she says.”
Read more at Time