The meaning of success in Korean career women's lives
Kim, Dong Jin
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The purpose of this study was to understand the meaning of success in Korean careerwomenâ€™s lives. The research questions guiding this study were as follows: (1) How do Koreancareer women define success in their lives? 2) How do Korean career women develop theirmeaning of success? 3) What are Korean career womenâ€™s strategies for their success in relationto gender expectations and roles in Korean society? A qualitative study was conducted especially based on feminist research methodologyframework. Data collection was conducted through interviews and documents. Purposefulsampling was used for selecting participants for this study. Interviews were conducted withKorean career women who have worked more than fifteen years in Korean workplace. Dataanalysis was conducted through inductive analysis with theories in mindâ€”theories on success,womenâ€™s ways of knowing, and gender performance. The findings of this study revealed how Korean career women define, learn, and performtheir success. First, they define success in their lives in relation to promotion in the workplace,content family life, and contributions for societal improvement. Second, they learn success intwo ways. Some women had clear concept of success when they started their career while otherwomen have developed their concept of success along the way through working. Finally, they use their femininity in two different ways, create different life styles out of traditional marriagerelations, and deal with glass ceiling to achieve their own success. The conclusions were drawn from the findings of this study. First, the notion of Koreancareer womenâ€™s success is integrative as it connects their workplace, family, and society.Second, the Korean career women learned their concept of success through constructedknowledge. Finally, they performed their gender in various ways as a strategy for success.