The Task

 

The term "comfort women," or 従軍慰安婦, euphemistically refers to women who were systematically forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese Imperial Army during the early 1930s to the end of WWII.  It is estimated that upwards of 200,000 women from China, Philippines, the Dutch East Indies, Burma, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam and most significantly Korea were recruited by force, coercion, or deception into sexual slavery by the Japanese Imperial Army. The women were dispersed to locations throughout Japanese occupied Asia where they were imprisoned in facilities know as 'comfort houses'. military-run brothels and used as sex slaves for Japanese soldiers. When WW2 ended naerly a qaurter of these women had died. Survivors were scarred both physically and psychologically for life. The survivors lived with the silent shame of their pasts with many taking their secret to their grave. After decades of silence the now elderly "Comfort Women" began to mobilize to take political action and actively seek compensation and redress.

You will assume the role of an elderly woman from Korea, Kim Soon.  You were born in Busan, Korea in 1923. At the age of 17 you were forced to become a comfort women, taken away from your family. Only after the defeat of Japan and thus ending WW2 you regained your freedom. You never married and lived a life of solitude. As a surviving comfort women and with each passing year the numbers dwindle, you want your story and the story of the "comfort women" be heard. You decide to write your memoirs. The time span of your memoir entries will not be restricted to your time as a "comfort woman" but will include a period of time before and after. The entries will be based on the specific web sites you visit. From these readings you will write a memoir excerpt approximately 250 - 300 words in length (1 page single spaced).  The memoir will inform readers of the factual, and historical events as they happened. Include your assumed character's personal reactions.  After completing your memoir entries as your assumed character you will write an editorial 1 page in length 250- 300 words defending your position on what happened to "Comfort Women" and on their plight to seek redress and compensation.