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At sex toy shop, South Korean women seek to shatter taboos

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      <h2>At sex toy shop, South Korean women seek to shatter taboos</h2> <p class=”author-section byline-plain”>By Reuters </p> <p class=”byline-section”><span class=”article-timestamp article-timestamp-published”> <span class=”article-timestamp-label”>Published:</span> <time datetime=”2015-12-16T09:56:21+0000″> 09:56 GMT, 16 December 2015 </time> </span> | <span class=”article-timestamp article-timestamp-updated”> <span class=”article-timestamp-label”>Updated:</span> <time datetime=”2015-12-16T09:56:23+0000″> 09:56 GMT, 16 December 2015 </time> </span> </p> <div id=”articleIconLinksContainer”>

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      <div class=”share-count”> <b>10</b> <span>shares</span> </div> </div> <!– ad: website –> <p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>By Ju-min Park</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>SEOUL, Dec 16 (Reuters) – Choi Jung-yoon and Kwak Eura are on a quest to shatter taboos when it comes to talking about sex in conservative South Korea.</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>The women are co-founders of “Pleasure Lab” in Seoul, a shop selling sex toys and related items targeted at women. They hope to break social silence about women and sexuality, while teaching customers how to use items such as vibrators.</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>”You can call us activists, and we think we are curators,” said Choi, 30, a former journalist who spent her teenage and college years in the United States.</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>”The way to change the world can be doing campaigns or fighting outside, which are important, but we think selling sex toys in a bright atmosphere with a smile here can be our own battle and own campaign,” she said in an interview at the store, open since August.</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>The shop, in a building that is also home to two churches in a residential part of Seoul, has white walls which highlight the products, many of them in pink or purple, and holds public workshops on sexual health.</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>It is featuring festive “Merry Clitorismas” gift boxes that contain vibrators and lingerie.</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>Traditionally, adult shops in South Korea are targeted towards men.</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>South Korea is a Confucian, male-dominated society that is undergoing a transition when it comes to gender roles.

      The pair said there is still a stigma when it comes to women’s sexual empowerment, or women talking about sex.</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>The country ranks 115th out of 145 in the World Economic Forum’s index of gender equality, and a massive beauty and plastic surgery industry tends to reinforce traditional perceptions of the feminine ideal.</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>”In pop culture, like TV shows and movies, heterosexual males are still the ones who have say and sexual independence,” said Choi.</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>”Women who speak out for their sexual life are socially stigmatised, called whores or sluts,” she said.</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>The shop generates monthly turnover of about 20 million won ($17,000), 광주 성형외과 including online sales.

      Most customers are women in their 20s and 30s.</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>”We are not a generation who grew up getting proper sexual education,” said Kwak, 28, 광주 성형외과 who is bisexual and 광주 성형외과 worked as a nurse for three years.</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>”We have been sheepish about this … It may sound grandiose, but we think we are really pioneers.”</font></p><p><font style=”font-size:1.2em;”>($1 = 1,177.5100 won) (Editing by Tony Munroe, Robert Birsel)</font></p></div>

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