Skip to Content


Chu Seong-hoon thought Hwang Kwanghee was gay because he used banmal

Idol news for today. In all honesty, I am sick of all of the number of articles that talk about how so-and-so was mistaken in thinking so-and-so was gay. The quality of these K-pop articles rivals TMZ in their idiocy. I'm not sure why this news story re-surfaced, but it was originally minor news back in 2012. 

Chu Seong-hoon's logic was a bit interesting here: how speaking to someone in banmal, a lower speech form in Korean, can make others infer that you are gay. It is the first I heard this, but maybe it can come off as flirtatious. Then again, everything Hwang Kwanghee does comes off as a bit, well gay.

I also think Kwanghee sounds like an idiot by deciding not to use banmal because he worried that it would make it to difficult for someone speaking a foreign language to understand. 

Translation: A domino effect leading to the legalization of bigamy and incest?

Another slow week in gay news in Korea. Unfortunately, the most interesting article that seemed worthy of translation was another Kukmin Ilbo piece full of faulty logic and false truths. I guess it is important to know the position of the bigots? Sorry loyal readers, but imagine how much more painful it was for me as the translator.

If same-sex marriage is legalized, it does not simply end at legal recognition of same sex couples. Not only will familial relations be thrown into chaos, but it will also usher in the collapse of the last barrier protecting the family by allowing bigamy and incest. There is also the problem of public health with the spread of AIDS. 

Andrew Goes to Korea: The Gay Christian Debate

Andrew Cheng wrote a summary of the July 25th debate between Pastors Paul Warren and Daniel Payne on whether or not the bible condemns homosexuality. An excerpt of his post is below:

Translation: 'Let's protect and support homosexuals'... Daejeon City's Ordinance Ammendment Causes Ripples

Today's translation is from an article over at the Kukmin Ilbo.  The political leanings of the religious paper can be seen clearly, which, along with the contents, can deepen our understanding on how rights for sexual minorities in Korea are both established and attacked. 

Translation: Kang Yong-suk is Against Marriage as Gay Couples Cannot Procreate

Kang Yong-suk, a controversial politician/lawyer on the conservative political spectrum, has expressed his views on gay marriage. The following translation of a Fact News article is not the most exciting news, but I think it is worth translating as gay marriage is increasingly being discussed in Korean media and it points out the hypocrisy of many opponents to same-sex marriage.

Andrew Goes to Korea: The Legal Battle for Marriage Equality in Korea

Andrew Cheng has done a great job summarizing what is going on with Kim Jho Gwang-soo and his battle for marriage equality in Korea with partner Kim Seung-hwan. Check out an excerpt of his post below.

Link: SBS Documentary on Same Sex Marriage

Andrew Goes to Korea translated an article on an SBS Documentary that was aired last month. It starts:

SBS Covers Same-Sex Marriage in an SBS Special To be aired on June 7th at 11:10pm, the SBS Special "We Got Married" episode (directed by Lee Kwang-hoon) will look at the controversy surrounding same-sex marriage in Korean society and consider whether Korean society, following various other countries' leads, might find some value in reconsidering its orientation [so to speak]

Seoul Admin Court rules that KQCF will have its parade!

The Korea Queer Culture Festival's parade will open according to plans on Sunday, June 28th.  

Translation: Homosexuality in Korean News During the 50's and 60's "Determination of Minority-ness and Normalization of Masculinity

The following is a translation of Section 2 of Homosexuality in Korean News During the 50's and 60's. I'll be translating one section a week. If you see any mistakes in my translation, please leave a comment below. ^^ 

Translation: Homosexuality in Korean News During the 50's and 60's "Mental Disease", "Special Environments", "Murder of Passion"

The following is a translation of Section 1 of Homosexuality in Korean News During the 50's and 60's. I'll be translating one section a week. If you see any mistakes in my translation, please leave a comment below. ^^ 

Reading List: Homosexuality in the News in 50s and 60s Korea

Chingusai has posted a great newsletter on homosexuality in Korea in the 1950s and 1960s, a period where little has been written in English on same-sex attraction in Korea. The article is divided into five sections, which explore the ways homosexuality was portrayed the news. The titles of each section give a taste of the article, but unfortunately, an article of this length will take me an ungodly amount of time to translate. I will aim to translate it section by section, post the translations and add hyperlinks below.

Queer Links from the Week: couple pushes Park on his stance on gay relationships, Hong Seok-cheon for Yongsan mayor, and a lesbian kiss on JTBC

A gay couple at a town hall meeting with Seoul Mayor Park Won Soon asked about gay rights, with a British expat asking 'How can I stay in Korea with the man I love? Where are my rights?' The expat, Simon HW, directly asked the mayor after having called the immigration office about applying for a partner visa several times. I applaud Simon (who actually used to work across the street from me), and hope more brave couples apply for marriage licenses. You can see the video over at youtube. 

Translation: 게이와 레즈비언이 결혼한 이유는? Why Would A Lesbian Marry a Gay Man?

From yesterday's links, this was the only article that I felt I could translate in a reasonable amount of time. A review on Two Weddings and a Funeral from Money Today is honestly more of a lineup than a critical review of the musical. I guess I'll have to see it and let readers know how it is ^^ 
"Among all people, when I see you my  heart trembles.

Park Won-soon: "Legalization of Gay Marriage Reported by Foreign Press is a Misinterpretation

Sigh. Looks like Seoul Mayor Park Won-soon is backing off from a statement that hinted at a pro-gay marriage stance. Thanks for an anonymous comment for pointing me to this article. From the Hankyoreh (translated by TKQ):

Translation: 언론사 광고 ‘허위사실’도 명예훼손 처벌될까: Will the press be punished for 'falsehood' and libel?

Media Today's article looking at Lee Gye-deok's fight for justice after being defamed in an anti-gay advertisement posted throughout Seoul's public transportation system is a great read.

Translation: 배우 차수연, “레즈비언 역할 위해 실제 동성애자 만나”: Actress Cha Soo-yeon, "For a lesbian role I met sexual minorities in real life"

From TV Report: (TKQ: I know that these reports from trashy television websites can be a bit meh, but I think that it is god to know how homosexuality is being portrayed in the entertainment industry)

[TV리포트=황지영 기자] 배우 차수연이 연극 ‘두 번의 결혼식과 한 번의 장례식’에서 레즈비언 효진 역을 연기하기 위해 실제 동성애자를 만났다고 전했다.

Translation: 한국 '동성애자 살기 좋은 나라' 123개국 중 69위- In Good for Gays poll, Korea ranks 69 out of 123 countries

This Yonhap News article was posted in response to a recent Gallup poll that asked people worldwide if their area was good for gay residents. Of course, this information could be easily found in English on Gallup's website, but I thought it was interesting how Yonhap was reporting it with specific comparisons to neighboring countries and other OECD nations. 

Translation: 헌재 "사실혼 배우자 상속권 불인정은 합헌" Constitutional Court “Constitutional disapproval of inheritance rights for commonwealth marriages”

While this article from Yonhap News does not refer specifically to same-sex couples in Korea, the ramifications for queer couples are quite clear. By not recognizing de-facto marriages, same-sex couples will continue to be screwed out of their rights to inheritance rights.

(서울=연합뉴스) 한지훈 기자 = 사실혼 배우자에게 상속권을 인정하지 않는 민법 조항은 헌법에 반하지 않는다고 헌법재판소가 결정했다.  

(Seoul Yonhap News) Han Ji-hun Reporter
The constitutional court has decided that civil laws that do not provide inheritance rights to those in de-facto marriages is not contrary to the constitution.

Share House Family Members Show Understanding Concerning KJW's Coming Out

 '셰어하우스' 식구들, 커밍아웃 김재웅에 이해와 배려 빛났다
Share House Family Members: Understanding and Caring Shows Concerning Kim Jae woong's Coming Out


[티브이데일리 최정은 기자]
한 집에 살다보니 가족화 된 것일까. '셰어하우스' 가족들은 방송내내 동성애자로 커밍아웃한 김재웅을 이해하고 배려하기 위해 노력하는 모습이었다.

[TV Daily Choi Jeong-eun Reporting]
Living in one house is like becoming a family. Throughout the broadcasting of “Share House” it has appeared to be an attempt at understanding and considering Kim Jae-woong’s coming out.

Translation: Kim Jae Woong Comes Out: The Problem Isn't Homosexuality but Rather the Directorial Style (김재웅 커밍아웃, 문제는 동성애가 아니라 연출방식이다)

Netizen Buzz did a good job translating an article on Net News titled TV show Sharehouse forces designer Kim Jae Woong to come out. I'm not really sure why they didn't translate the entire article, but I wanted to translate the rest of the thoughts the editor had on the manner in which Kim Jae Woong came out on Sharehouse. If you see any problems with my translation, please let me know! 

Translation: '사랑' 사전적 정의 '이성애 기준'으로 되돌아갔다 The Dictionary Definition of Love Has Restored to a Heterosexual Basis

Translation: Heo Ji-ung's Gay Proclamation: "I have experienced skin ship with gays, but I'm not that way"

From Dailian:
허지웅 게이 발언 "동성애자와 스킨십 경험... 하지만 그쪽아냐"
Heo Ji-ung's Gay Proclamation: "I have experienced skinship with gays, but I'm not that way"

I thought it was fish cake!

Nothing new seems to be coming out of Korea in terms of queer news, so I decided to translate this old article. It is hilarious. In case you don't know what 어묵 is, it is that fish cake you often see in Korea.

Why don't you use a condom?

Found this great survey from iShap. Education everyone!

Queertoon Translation: Insadong Scandal

Angelcrazy has posted some more comics. Some of his aren't the most appropriate for this blog, but I liked this one.
-Insadong Scandal
Girl: Wow, let's go rest for a bit.
Boy: Sure. How about going for a coffee?

Lesbian(?) Music Video: 골라봐 (Take Your Pick) Translation

This video is a bit old, but I just discovered it. The group Ten (텐) Wreleased 골라봐 back in 2009. Two women are sexually assaulted on the subway (probably line 2) and proceed to comfort one another (eventually physically). This video came out right before I moved to Korea for the first time, but I hadn't heard of it till 2013. Does anyone know what the reaction was like in Korea?

Watching the video you would think "Hey, those ladies love ladies". Then you take a look at the lyrics.

Translation of lyrics (by TKQ)

자! 골라 골라보세요 네 골라보세요                        

Translation: MBN News' The Republic of Prostitution... Now Homosexuals Participate as Well

Last week, MBN News produced a segment on gay prostitution. With the shocking title of 성매매 공화국... 이젠 동성애 성매매까지 (The Republic of Prostitution... Now Homosexuals Participate as Well) I recommend watching it at MBN News' homepage. Pay particular attention to how they characterize the same-sex prostitution as something worse than heterosexual prostitution.  Some of the language is quite dramatic.

Guidelines prepared for police to protect the rights of sexual minorities


I saw this article in the Seoul Newspaper, but didn't find a translation. It was short, so I thought I'd translate it for my readers.
Guidelines prepared for police to protect the rights of sexual minorities
March 19, 2013
Mr. A, a gay man, was threatened to be exposed as gay to his family and friends by his ex-lover of last year. Mr. A wanted to report it to the police, but he was worried his sexual identity would be revealed during the investigation process so he gave up on reporting the threat.

Translation: Queer Toon 14: I hate myself for being like this

Here is a new Queer Toon by Angel Crazy that I actually can post because it isn't too raunchy...

HIV/AIDS Awareness Campaign in Seoul

After a wonderful date in Apgujeong, including a love box viewing of Les Mis, I headed home via subway. There, I saw a huge poster with an HIV/AIDS awareness poster.

The top message says 'AIDS, if you know it correctly, it isn't scary'.
Syndicate content

Koreabridge - RSS Feeds
Features @koreabridge     Blogs  @koreablogs
Jobs @koreabridgejobs  Classifieds @kb_classifieds

Koreabridge - Facebook Group

Koreabridge - Googe+ Group