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      Word of the year: Xenophobia
     작성자   :   Audrey    (16-11-30 18:54:24    Hit : 671)

 

Xenophobia is the Word of the Year, according to one of the world's biggest English dictionary websites, Dictionary.com, Tuesday.

This reflects tense racial conflicts as a result of Brexit, the Syrian refugee crisis, U.S. police shootings of African-Americans, and most recently, the U.S. presidential election.

"Xenophobia and other words tied to global news and political rhetoric reflected the worldwide interest in the unfortunate rise of fear of otherness in 2016, making it the clear choice for Word of the Year," said Dictionary.com CEO Liz McMillan.

"While we can never know the exact reasons why xenophobia trended in our lookups this year, this reflects a desire in our users to understand the significant discourse surrounding global events." 

The largest search spike for the term "xenophobia" was on June 24, the day after the Brexit was announced.

The search rate spiked 938 percent to previous dates.

South Korea and Xenophobia

Unfortunately, South Korea has also been regularly associated with xenophobia.

This year alone, aspects of xenophobia have been apparent in Korea with various criminal cases involving Chinese nationals on Jeju Island, mistreatment of migrant workers and discomfort about Islam and halal food. 

In a study published by the Ministry of Gender Equality and Family in 2012, Korea hit a record low of 36.2 percent of people in favor multicultural families.

The figure is particularly low compared to 73.8 percent in 18 European countries.

The research also showed that 86.5 percent of survey respondents viewed being of "genuine Korean" descent as important.

Experts say such feelings against foreigners in Korea can have a negative impact on the nation's economy and public atmosphere.

"Expressing hatred against a specific can cause serious mental suffering to those targeted," Dr. Lee Joo-young, an adviser at the Seoul National University Human Rights Center told The Korea Times.

"Korea has to break away from the concept that it is a homogenous country and stop persecuting people based on nationality, race and skin color."

Lee said Korea had a duty to act against such discrimination under the U.N. Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD) which Korea ratified on Dec. 5 1978.

"As a member nation of CERD, the Korean government should clearly state that xenophobia goes against human rights standards," Lee said.

"A regular convention or discussion should be held to talk about such issues and relevant laws.

"The National Assembly and the National Human Rights Commission of Korea should consider and pass laws banning such acts."

Xenophobia has long affected many foreigners in Korea.

On Oct. 24, 2014, Amnesty International published a report on South Korea's farming industry's exploitation of migrant labor.

The report exposed alleged violence, squalid housing, excessive working hours, no regular rest days and mandatory unpaid overtime.

The report also shed light on the discrimination and xenophobia to which migrant workers were exposed in Korea.

"If South Koreans were trapped in a similar cycle of abuse, there would rightly be outrage," a migrant worker told Amnesty International. 

 

 

By: Teacher Audrey

 

Source:  http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/world/2016/11/182_219243.html


 


 

 

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