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Kkutaeh Gender Roles

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A flock of sheep wanders as the all-seeing shepherd meanders nearby. He watches them closely as they consume their daily vittles provided by nature, making sure not even one sheep goes astray, or that any predator comes to disrupt the supposed bliss. The shepherd's love for his flock is that of presumed perfection. He maintains the assumption that as long as he guards the flock and provides ample grazing land, the flock will provide him with copious amounts of wool: that their relationship will be all right. Unfortunately, this simply may not be true; his flock can produce the wool or it may suffer from an unexpected disease or any other ailment and their presumed relationship will fail. As Christopher Marlowe so elegantly presented in “The …show more content…
Women take on traditional male roles such as factory workers, business owners, and even replacing male athletes in some circumstances. Yet all the while, they are still to support their men while they are off fighting. The Japanese version of support, much darker than what most history books let on, is that of a “comfort” woman. These women undergo horrors that many soldiers do not even dream of facing. Kkutaeh supports the war effort as a comfort woman, but she is also Doc’s first “sheep”; she is not given a choice whether she wants to be in his flock or not, but Doc cares for her nonetheless. He provides her with sufficient amounts of food, medical attention, and even protects her from most of the “predators” of the camp. Doc even goes far enough to fantasize about their future as shepherd and sheep: “I stayed awake until almost morning, thinking of other places you might like to see” (Lee 256). Doc perpetrates a delusional destiny that involves the two of them because he sees her as being able to provide to him a stable and happy life. He believes that because he brings her daily rations, takes care of her health needs, and allows her to survive adequately in a hostile environment, that she will love him for fulfilling those basic needs of which otherwise she would deprived in that in infernal environment. The shepherd in him imagines a future for them …show more content…
Children need it to flourish into adults that can in turn provide for their children and even after their children are grown and have transitioned into their adult life, the elderly need it as they transition into “the next life. New golden-age relationships are commonplace because of the fear of transitioning into “the great beyond” alone. While Mary Burns loses her husband and all of her children move away, Doc is just beginning his family with Sunny. One day Mary Burns walks by while Doc is planting his garden and this surprises her: ”I never see people here working in their yards. It would be nice if they did. But I often see that you do, at least whenever I’m walking by” (47). Mary Burns and Doc Hata are both nearing the end of their lives and each feel a need of companionship; the former much different than the latter. The statement made by Mary Burns symbolizes the two’s ensuing relationship; while they are both in the same time period of their lives (same neighborhood), they are in very much different periods of their lives. Mary is on the stage of walking, just enjoying what she has left in life and often “stopping to smell the roses”. Doc on the other hand is still growing his garden, he adopts Sunny and is still in the process of raising her and of creating the life he wants to live. This leads to both of their needs for love, but both are very different. Doc Hatta

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