POSTCARDS FROM SOUTH KOREA (4)

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POSTCARDS FROM SOUTH KOREA (4)

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PRODUCT STORY:

For centuries, the haenyeo, or “Korean mermaids,” from the Korean island province of Jeju have been diving into the chilly ocean waters in order to make their living by harvesting abalone, conch, and octopus. Local artists such as those featured here have taken the “mermaid” tradition and designed graphics based on these women’s stories. 

 

PRODUCT DETAILS:

This set of postcards includes all 4 graphics shown. The postcards are the standard size of 100x148mm. 4 sheets included.

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THE STORY OF THE MERMAIDS

Also known as “Korean Mermaids,” haenyo are able to dive up to 65 feet (20 meters) under the sea, holding their breath for as long as two minutes at a time.While this might sound like an easy task with all the modern diving equipment available nowadays, the haenyeo never use any breathing equipment.

Jeju’s diving is one of South Korea’s most fascinating and enduring traditions and its origins can be traced back to 434 A.D. It was originally considered to be a male profession, but this changed in the 17th century and by the 18th-century females largely outnumbered male divers, thus becoming primary breadwinners of their families.

Over the years that followed after the end of the Japanese occupation, the haenyo became primary breadwinners. For many families, sea-diving was their main source of income. Men took care of the home, looked after the children, cleaned, and cooked, while women took care of the financial well being of the family. The main dive site in Jeju is now a  UNESCO Cultural Heritage site.